Make Truth and Reconciliation Day a Yukon Statutory Holiday – Yukon NDP

Whitehorse – The Yukon NDP will be tabling a Private Member’s Bill in the Legislature, to make National Truth and Reconciliation Day a Yukon statutory holiday.

The creation of a statutory holiday is call-to-action #80 of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, one among many calls-to-action that the Liberal government has failed to implement.

There is much to be done to acknowledge the ongoing effects that colonisation and the legacy of residential schools has on indigenous people, and to honour the survivors and those who did not get to come home. Making September 30th a Yukon statutory holiday would mean space and time to come together as a community to honour survivors and those who can’t be with us today,” said Annie Blake, MLA for Vuntut Gwitchin.

In the government’s consultation report, a clear majority of Yukoners were in favour of making this day a statutory day.

“Last year, the government blamed a lack of time. A year later, we’ve yet to see concrete action from this government to allow community members to participate in this day as part of the reconciliation process. That’s why the Yukon NDP have decided to table a Private Members’ Bill to make this happen,” said Kate White, leader of the Yukon NDP.

“I call on the Liberal government to make funding available for community initiatives, so that we as a territory can mark this day with programing, events and education. This is a day to honour survivors and those who didn’t get to come home, as well as their families and loved ones. This is a day to tell stories. This is also a day to put reconciliation into action,” added MLA Blake.

As per last year, the Yukon NDP Caucus will donate their statutory holiday pay to a local Indigenous organization. We encourage those who are able to do the same by donating to community organisations such as the Committee on Abuse in Indian Residential Schools (CAIRS) or the Indian Residential School Survivors Society (IRSSS).