Mark Hill, Elected Chief from Six Nations of the Grand River, released a statement regarding Canada Day on Monday, June 27.
“As we continue to reflect on Canada’s colonial legacy and its continued impact on Indigenous peoples, Six Nations will once again not be recognizing Canada Day on July 1, 2022.
Similar to last year, we are instead encouraging everyone to wear orange to remember the children lost to the residential school system and to honour the Survivors. We hope that rather than a day of celebration, July 1 can be a day of somber reflection and renewed commitments to furthering the process of reconciliation.”
First Nations communities across Turtle Island continue to grapple with last year’s findings of unmarked graves at numerous former residential school sites across the country. Those discoveries have forced our people to relive the trauma of the residential school system, and led to a long-overdue confrontation of Canada’s role in the egregious loss of Indigenous cultures across the country.
“Although I understand that July 1st is typically a day of celebration for many, I ask that people use this day as an opportunity to reflect on what it means to be Canadian while First Nations people in this country continue to bear the scars of the residential school system,” said Elected Chief Mark Hill. “We were very touched by the support we received last year and would be pleased if that overwhelming sense of solidarity could be extended to this year’s July 1 as well.”