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Statement from Ministers Carolyn Bennett, Daniel Vandal, Marc Miller and Steven Guilbeault on National Indigenous History Month

Statement from Ministers Carolyn Bennett, Daniel Vandal, Marc Miller and Steven Guilbeault on National Indigenous History Month and Indigenous Reads

Canada NewsWire

OTTAWA, June 1, 2020 /CNW/ - The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services, the Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister of Northern Affairs, and the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage issued the following statement today:

"June is National Indigenous History Month, a time for celebrating Indigenous traditions, values, and cultures, as well as the strength of Indigenous Nations and communities.  It is a time for learning about, appreciating and acknowledging the contributions First Nations, Inuit and Métis people have made in shaping Canada .

We recognize the importance and sacred nature of cultural ceremonies and celebrations that usually occur during this time. While celebrations and events for National Indigenous History Month may be different this year than those in past years, we can share and learn from stories, traditions and culture in new ways that still keep us together and connected.

Indigenous peoples on this land have relied on oral traditions - stories, lessons and knowledge - to maintain a historical record and sustain their cultures and identities from one generation to the next. This year, the technologies we now rely upon can provide even more opportunities for us to learn and communicate.

Through the month of June, we will be sharing our recommendations of stories about Indigenous issues, cultures and history as part of #IndigenousReads. Sharing a variety of works by Indigenous authors and helping to empower their voices is a critical part of  reconciliation.

Many of the recommendations are available in e-book, audio format online, or available for online ordering and pick up from your local bookstore. Let others know what books you've chosen by sharing the titles on social media using #IndigenousReads.

We all play a role in healing the relationship between Indigenous peoples and non-Indigenous Canadians, which requires each of us to be action-oriented and address  misinformation and racism. Understanding, empathy, compassion, education and action can help break down racism, and stories are a remarkable tool. That's why it's so important for all Canadians to learn about Canada's colonial history and issues including residential schools. Understanding the spirit and intent and the history of the Treaties, as well as Indigenous peoples' contributions to Canada as it is today is an opportunity ‎to take part in  those difficult conversations  on our path to reconciliation. It's an opportunity to build a renewed relationship based on affirmation of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership with Indigenous peoples.     

We encourage all Canadians to celebrate National Indigenous History Month by participating in the #IndigenousReads Campaign, among other initiatives that will be available to you online through our website and social media platforms. This month you will be able to watch an online stream of a concert, or play, or  film. Tour a virtual exhibit from one of Canada's many museums. Learn about Indigenous languages, crafts, cooking and relationship with the natural world. Support an Indigenous community event or institution.

Make this a month for learning about the history of  First Nations, Inuit, and Métis people. As the historical backbone of our nation, the First Peoples of Canada, will provide a leadership role in its development and future."

Stay connected

Join the conversation about Indigenous peoples in Canada:

Twitter: @GCIndigenous 

Facebook: @GCIndigenous 

Instagram: @gcindigenous

Twitter: @CrownIndigenous 

Facebook: @CrownIndigenous

You can subscribe to receive our news releases and speeches via RSS feeds. For more information or to subscribe, visit www.cirnac.gc.ca/RSS.

SOURCE Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC)



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