Ottawa – November 15, 2018 – UFCW Canada was recently invited to deliver testimony to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, which is currently examining a private member’s bill that calls for the recognition of National Indigenous Peoples Day, June 21, as an official federal holiday.
Introduced by New Democrat MP Georgina Jolibois, Bill C-369, An Act to amend the Bills of Exchange Act, the Interpretation Act, and the Canada Labour Code (National Indigenous Peoples Day), received broad support from organizations that participated in the November 8 committee hearing, including the Assembly of First Nations (AFN), the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (CAP), and UFCW Canada.
At the hearing, UFCW Canada’s Director of Human Rights, Equity, and Diversity, Naveen Mehta, discussed our union’s work on reconciliation – including UFCW Canada’s partnerships with I Love First Peoples and the First Nations Child & Family Caring Society – and our efforts to engage Indigenous members from across the country through the UFCW Canada Indigenous Sub-Committee.
Brother Mehta explained that the recognition of National Indigenous Peoples Day would serve as an important step towards reconciliation in Canada and would provide Canadians of all backgrounds with an opportunity to reflect on the achievements of First Nations citizens and honour their contributions to Canadian life.
The committee also heard from representatives from the AFN, CAP, and the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, all of whom spoke in favour of establishing National Indigenous Peoples Day as an official federal holiday.
UFCW Canada’s participation in the Canadian Heritage committee hearing was part of our union’s ongoing effort to work towards reconciliation in Canada. In addition to our hearing testimony, and our partnerships with I Love First Peoples and The Caring Society, UFCW Canada has created a Reconciliation Toolkit that is available for download on our website. To learn more about the toolkit, click here.