In June 2021, the federal government passed legislation marking September 30 as the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This day is a response to the 80th call to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. It is a day to “honour Survivors, their families, and communities, and ensure that public commemoration of this history and legacy of residential schools remains a vital component of the reconciliation process.” In 2021, Civida decided to close its operations to recognize the history and ongoing legacy of residential schools. Again this year, our offices will be closed on September 30.
Civida acknowledges that we work and serve customers on Treaty 6 territory and within the Métis homelands and Métis Nation of Alberta Region 4, which has been home to Nehiyawak (Cree), Anishinaabe (Saulteaux), Niitsitapi (Blackfoot), Dene and Nakota Sioux long before any Civida homes were built. We recognize that our work and presence has an impact on the people with whom we share this territory. We are all treaty people. Housing is important in the journey of reconciliation, and as such we have an inherent responsibility to foster relationships with First Nations Peoples and further the Calls to Action.
Civida currently provides, and plans to continue to provide, education opportunities to its staff for learning more about Indigenous history. We recognize that many of our developments have Indigenous names such as Kameyosek, Meyokumin, and Sakaw. Commissioned research has been done on the origins of our building names.
On September 30, we encourage our staff and customers to honour survivors, their families and communities by reflecting on the history and ongoing legacy of the residential school system.