This is to inform you that the Government of Canada has recently passed legislation to make September 30 a federal statutory holiday called the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
Article 18 of our collective agreement provides for any newly declared statutory holidays by the federal government to be applicable to our members.
While September 30, 2021, is a designated paid holiday, this National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is an opportunity for each member of our group to recognise, commemorate, and reflect on the legacy of residential schools.
As many of you know, the members of the Manitoba Association of Government Engineers (MAGE) work in various capacities in almost every part of the province.
Treaties were negotiated and established with Indigenous Peoples throughout Manitoba (numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 10) starting in August of 1871 with Treaty 1 and ending with Treaty 10 in August 1906. Treaties 6 and 10 do not have any territories in Manitoba but there are four communities that are signatories to those two Treaties. Also, the Dakota people are not part of any Treaty in the province however, they have been recognised as having use and occupation of lands in Manitoba.
Federal residential schools operated in Canada from approximately 1883, but the first residential schools can be traced to the early 1830s. The last residential school was closed in 1996.
Through open dialogue with Indigenous Peoples, we can help heal wounds that continue to this day. In this respect, I would encourage you to participate in a local or community event or spend the day in quiet reflection.
Kindly, respectfully and in solidarity,
Harald Larsen, P.Eng.