n. — Politics, Aboriginal, First Nations
an effort to improve the relationship between Aboriginal peoples, non-Aboriginal Canadians and official Canada, based on an understanding of Aboriginal history and issues of justice.
Type: 6. Memorial — The term reconciliation is associated with the stuggle of Aboriginal peoples to get redress for the abuse they were exposed to in residential schools. After decades of legal campaigns, in 1998 the Canadian federal government issued a Reconciliation Statement that acknowledged the abuse and established the Aboriginal Healing Foundation (see Canadian Encyclopedia reference). As awareness efforts continued, in 2007 the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement (IRSSA) was established to offer compensation and psychological support to former students, now often called residential school survivors. The IRSSA established a five-year Truth and Reconciliation Commission that provided individuals, families and communities opportunities for sharing their experiences throughout the country (see Canadian Encyclopedia reference). These efforts are continued by Reconciliation Canada, founded in 2012, with the aim of engaging people throughout the country to understand Aboriginal history and build stronger communities, through events such as Reconciliation Week (see Reconciliation Canada reference).
Critics of the term reconciliation assert that it is too narrowly focused on the context of residential schools, without taking other negative consequences of colonialism into consideration (Flisfeder 2010: 12).
See also: residential school Truth and Reconciliation Commission residential school survivor reconciliation week assimilation
- 1984  The Pope was then handed an eagle feather as a symbol of his "supreme courage and spiritual achievement." In an address to the gathering, the Pope called for reconciliation between Canada's aboriginal and immigrant peoples. "This is truly the hour for Canadians to heal all the divisions that have developed over the centuries between the original peoples and the newcomers to this continent."
- 1992  Nothing less than a complete restructuring of relations between Indians and non-Indians is needed in Canada, says a report by the federal Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples. And Indian self-government is a crucial first step toward reconciliation, says the report, released yesterday. "Recognizing the inherent right of aboriginal self-government in the constitution would be a catalyst in this task of reconstruction," it says.
- 1993  Two cultures came together in an act of reconciliation Monday as the Anglican Church returned five artifacts to the Nisga'a people. As a Nisga'a band member threw swan down over Rt. Rev. Barry Jenks as a sign of peace, the bishop of the Diocese of B.C. wafted the down over his body and crossed his hands solemnly on his chest. More than 200 natives, clergy and Anglican congregation members packed into the Mungo Martin long house heard Jenks apologize for injustices to native people.
- 1997  Like officials of other denominations, Siebert said the United Church seeks reconciliation with natives. Siebert and Millar said many abused former students have told them they wouldn't initiate civil lawsuits if the Liberal government agreed to a negotiated, collective settlement that would help resolve the residential-school legacy. The federal government is expected to make a statement about residential schools in November, when it offers a larger response to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples.
- 2001  Years later, after becoming a Senator, Douglas made an official visit to the prison that held his parents' killers. To his surprise, one of the killers approached him and, through tears and brokenness, said he was sorry for what he had done. Then Douglas did the seemingly impossible -- he forgave the killer, and later stated that this act of forgiveness finally rid him of his pain, it was like "poison draining out." THAT is reconciliation, and THAT is what Canada now needs to heal its aboriginal problems related to historic injustice and residential schools.
- 2012  Many Canadians will "see their country differently" after hearing the truth about the residential school system, said commission chair, Justice Murray Sinclair. Speaking at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, Sinclair said: "These are hard truths that we need to acknowledge in order to lay the foundation for reconciliation."
- 2012  The deal and the apology were supposed to herald a new era of reconciliation, but it hasn't turned out that way. "Disgust and apathy -- that's what a lot of them feel. It's like going back to residential school again," said Mike Cachagee, the group's executive director.
- 2014  The bill was intended to give First Nations control over their own education. But the many chiefs who oppose it say there has not been adequate consultation. They say the bill imposes standards on First Nations while allowing the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs to intervene in on-reserve education through a council dominated by his appointees.
Although the bill allocates $1.25-billion over three years in additional funding starting in 2016, some chiefs say it may ultimately be insufficient to meet the needs of a ballooning aboriginal population.
Even as he was offering his resignation, Mr. Atleo continued to speak in favour of the legislation.
"Smashing the status quo means ending the glacial pace of change for our people and providing full support for growth and success," he said. "Smashing the status quo means new approaches grounded in recognition and in reconciliation."