NIAGARA FALLS, ON - On September 30th, the City of Niagara Falls and our City employees will observe the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation through education, reflection and participation in Residential School Remembrance through Orange Shirt Day.
The Government of Canada responded to “the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s call to action # 80 by creating a holiday called the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, which seeks to honour First Nations, Inuit and Métis Survivors, their families, and communities, and to ensure that public commemoration of their history and the legacy of residential schools remains a vital component of the reconciliation process.” Canada’s federal government enacted legislation on June 3rd, 2021, to establish that each year, on September 30th, the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation would be observed.
National Truth & Reconciliation Day coincides with Orange Shirt Day, a grassroots movement in recognition of Phyllis Webstad, a residential school survivor.
To mark the day:
- Council recognized September 30th as the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, and proclaimed a seven day period, beginning Thursday, September 30th, 2021 and ending Thursday, October 7, 2021 as "Residential School Remembrance Week".
The Every Child Matters Flag will be raised and then lowered to half-staff on September 30th at 9:00am in Rosberg Park (across from City Hall) to recognize Truth and Reconciliation Day, and commemorate the legacy of the residential school system and the impact it has had on Indigenous communities. The ceremony will start with a Land Acknowledgement and will include a moment of silence. The public is invited to attend.
- The City of Niagara Falls is encouraging everyone to wear orange and observe a moment of silent reflection at 9:15am on September 30th to recognize the history and legacy of the residential school system in Canada.
- We also encourage all staff and residents to take the time to listen and learn from Indigenous elders, leaders, storytellers and community members.
- The Niagara Falls History Museum will present Richard Hill, Indigenous Innovations Specialist at Mohawk College, with a Lesson from Wampum Diplomacy: From the Two Row Wampum until Today on September 30th from 3:00pm to 4:00pm via Zoom.
- Education and training will be provided to all City staff on Truth and Reconciliation beginning the week of September 27th.
The City of Niagara Falls Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee will share information on Indigenous agencies and services in the Niagara Area.
- The Falls will be illuminated in orange commencing at 6:30pm, and repeating at each half hour for 15 minutes, up to and including 11:30pm to recognize and commemorate the legacy of the residential school system and the impact it has had on Indigenous communities.
City facilities and services will remain open on September 30th, and Niagara Transit bus service will operate on a regular schedule.
For more information, contact:
Chief Administrative Officer
City of Niagara Falls
(905) 356-7521 ext 5100