National Indigenous Peoples Day, Statement from Premier
Today, June 21, is National Indigenous Peoples Day, a time to recognize and celebrate the cultures and contributions of the First Nations, Inuit and Métis in Canada.
The celebrations will be much different this year because of COVID-19, but the spirit and meaning of this important day are in no way diminished.
In fact, given the experiences and tragedies in different parts of our country in recent months, this day takes on even more significance.
There have been many conversations about the sad reality that Indigenous people are still subject to racism, both systemic and overt. This is unacceptable and we all have a role to play in ensuring we have a fair and just society for all.
A key part of that journey is raising cultural awareness and understanding, something we have committed to do with the strong, vibrant Mi’kmaw culture in Nova Scotia. We continue to develop resources in our schools and have made the promotion of Mi’kmaw culture a major part of our Culture Action Plan.
I am proud of how much we have achieved together to recognize the Mi’kmaw language, promote treaty education and celebrate Mi’kmaw culture and heritage, and I look forward to accomplishing much more.
Unfortunately, we have lost a wonderful educational opportunity this summer with the postponement of the North American Indigenous Games due to COVID-19. This celebration of sport and culture would have drawn more than 5,000 participants from across the continent to our province. While disappointing, we continue to work with the games’ host society on the way forward.
In Nova Scotia, we recognize the importance of Mi’kmaw culture every day. On National Indigenous Peoples Day, let us all reflect on the contributions of Indigenous people across the country.
902-221-3719 Email: Kristina.Shannon@novascotia.ca