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Truth and Reconciliation Day

Sept. 28, 2022

ᑕᐋᐧᐤ | Tawâw

There have been over 2,300 children found in unmarked graves. Children who never returned home to their families. There are still many to be found. On September 30, we remember the horrific history Indigenous children and their families experienced at the hands of the colonizers on their Traditional Land. Survivors of the residential school system search for justice and closure but still face inequities.

Our hearts are with the survivors and families.

Listening to the Voices

Forced assimilation is beyond the schools. It also took place in Indian hospitals and in today's health facilities. The College of Registered Nurses of Alberta (CRNA) is listening to Elders and community members from Treaty 8 Territory on their lived experiences within the health-care system.

These individuals have consented to share their recordings with registrants and staff as additions to the existing Stronger Together: Learning Through Indigenous Perspectives course. The new edition will be made available in the new year.

Expanding Our Understanding of Indigiqueer and Identity

To support the resurgence of Indigiqueer, the CRNA is making changes. Indigenous communities have diverse gender identities and expressions beyond the Western imposed binary (male and female) that has occurred as part of colonization.

The CRNA is committed to increasing its gender inclusivity and is taking these steps:

  • Adopting the updated term 2SLGBTQQIA+* for referencing the community, placing Two-Spirit at the front to recognize the individuals who were first on these lands.
  • Conducting College-wide training, in the next few days, to increase staff's understanding of the gender spectrum.
  • Implementing a gender expression and identity inclusivity plan into the College's practices.

* The term was chosen to align with the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People National Action Plan: Ending Violence Against Indigenous Women, Girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People. The term stands for Two-Spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual. The plus symbol represents the many other groups that do not see themselves as one of the other terms, such as agender, non-binary and pansexual ­­― and additional non-Western identities.

Anyone who would like further emotional assistance can find support from the Indian Residential School Survivors Society toll-free number at 1-800-721-0066 or the 24-hour crisis line at 1-866-925-4419.