Ministerial Statement – Premier Recognizes Aboriginal Peoples Week: Truth and Reconciliation at Memorial University
March 21, 2016
The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier and Minister of Labrador and Aboriginal Affairs:
Premier Recognizes Aboriginal Peoples Week: Truth and Reconciliation at Memorial University
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize Aboriginal Peoples Week, a series of important events taking place at Memorial University from March 21 to 24 in response to the release of the Final Report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.
Mr. Speaker, the significant role of education and post-secondary institutions in reconciliation was highlighted in several recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada report. It included a focus on increased access to post-secondary education for Aboriginal youth and the need for courses and programming on Aboriginal culture, language and history, as well as issues relevant to Aboriginal peoples, culture and language.
There are more than 20 thought-provoking sessions happening over a four-day period during the week, including a Harris Centre public forum on the impact of Aboriginal Residential Schools in Newfoundland and Labrador. The events are intended to spark dialogue and discussion, in addition to responding to the release of the Final Report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. They also demonstrate Memorial’s role in not only helping to safeguard Aboriginal history, cultures and languages, but also ensuring that students gain a deep understanding of Aboriginal affairs.
Mr. Speaker, Aboriginal and Indigenous studies is an important field in Canada and around the world. We all have a role to play in reconciliation and I am pleased that Memorial is moving forward with programming to educate and inform about this important part of Canadian history.