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Canada’s first-ever National Day of Truth and Reconciliation is set to take place next week on September 30, coinciding with Orange Shirt Day.
While Ontario is not recognizing the day as a statutory holiday in the province, there are still events throughout the day in Toronto to honour and support First Nations, Metis and Inuit.
As the day is not a statutory holiday in Ontario, Toronto is treating the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation as educational.
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On September 30, Toronto will fly Canadian flags at half mast on official poles at Toronto City Hall, Old City Hall, Metro Hall, civic centres, fire and paramedic stations, long-term care facilities, parks and other facilities. Toronto will also light its iconic sign orange in honour of the day.
Throughout the week, the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR) will be hosting online events and learning opportunities for both schools and the general public. They will also be producing an hour-long special to be hosted on APTN and CBC on September 30 at 9 pm.
One way to acknowledge the day, aside from wearing your orange shirt, is familiarizing yourself with the 94 calls to action put forth by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in 2015.
The Toronto Public Library has put together a reading list of Indigenous authors in collaboration with their Indigenous Advisory Council.
If books aren’t your thing, the National Film Board of Canada has compiled a list of films and documentaries by Indigenous people that you can watch.
If you are Indigenous and need support:
National Indian Residential School Crisis: 1-866-925-4419
Native Youth Crisis Line: 1-877-209-1266