Letter to PM Justin Trudeau – February 2020
Living into Right Relations
In 2008, the Truth and reconciliation Commission of Canada was established to explore and document the history and legacy of the Indian Residential School system and to make recommendations on healing and reconcilation.
The United Church of Canada ran Indian Residential Schools and as such is a signatory to the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement. The United Church ran the Edmonton Industrial School, located just outside of St. Albert on what is now the Poundmakers Lodge Treatment Centre.
We believe it is critical for us as a congregation to take seriously the Calls to Action that arose out of the Truth and Reconciliation process, particularly the call for churches and other fatih groups to adopt and comply with the principles, norms and standards of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
As such we affirm the right of Indigenous peoples to self-determination in spiritual matters, including the right to practice, devlop and teach their own spiritual and religious traditions, customs and ceremonies. We also affirm the right of Indigenous peoples to: self-determination; cultural and spiritual identity; participation in decision-making; lands and resources; free, prior and informed consent; and freedom from discrimination.
We believe that one of the ways we can live into right relations is by learning the true history of Canada and the way we have treated Indigenous people.