On September 30, 2021, the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, we pause to reflect and acknowledge. We also grieve alongside Indigenous peoples everywhere in the world who have been dealing with the pain caused by the discoveries of thousands of known and unmarked graves in Saskatchewan and across the country. We recognize the deep intergenerational trauma the Indian residential school system has wrought on generations of Indigenous families. These discoveries not only drew attention to but heightened awareness worldwide of Canada’s systemic racism and history of genocide. We can no longer stay idle.
SODS therefore continues its commitment to building meaningful relationships between Indigenous peoples and newcomers to Canada, including immigrants and refugees arriving from around the world. We recognize that we are often the first point of contact between Indigenous individuals and newcomers and that as stewards of knowledge practices, it is part of our role to offer Indigenous peoples a strong voice and presence in our programming.
Our leaders, board members and staff are glad to celebrate the importance of Indigenous knowledges and teachings with visits to the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation Reserve, invitations to Indigenous artists, elders and leaders to our events, a media partnership with Eagle Feather News, land acknowledgments in all of our documents / our digital signature blocks, and a strong relationship with our Indigenous organizational partners such as the Office of Treaty Commissioner.
The Saskatoon Open Door Society fully supports the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and concurs with the Canadian Human Rights Commission that it provides “a strong, comprehensive, and unambiguous articulation and affirmation of the inherent rights of Indigenous peoples that sets out the obligations of States in respect to those rights and provides mechanisms to redress and protect against violations of them.’’
"We are committed to listen to the truth, learn from the past, reflect on the history and celebrate the resilience of the survivors of the Indian residential school system and their families. We remember the many Indigenous children that never came home", says Ali Abukar, CEO of Saskatoon Open Door Society.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s 94 Calls to Action
First Nations Child and Family Caring Society
Government of Canada National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
CBC’s “Beyond 94”
Orange Shirt Society
United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples