Together with Canadians everywhere, we honour the rich heritage, distinct cultures, and achievements of Canada's First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. This year, it is more important than ever that we not turn away from the realities of Canada’s history and present. The recent discoveries of the mass graves of 319 children at former residential schools in Kamloops, British Columbia, and Brandon, Manitoba, is a heartbreaking reminder of the devastating impact these schools had, and continue to have, on Indigenous communities and individuals. We mourn for the children who remain lost and stand with all Indigenous communities across Turtle Island.
The Missing Children Project of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) is a systematic effort to record and analyze the deaths, as well as the presence and condition of cemeteries for the children. We support the Truth and Reconciliation Calls to Action; we echo the TRC’s calls to the federal government to make documents public, develop and maintain the National Residential School Student Death Register as well as an online registry of residential school cemeteries, and develop and implement strategies and procedures for the identification, documentation, maintenance, commemoration, and protection of residential school cemeteries. A copy of the all 94 Calls to Action can be downloaded below.
A National Indian Residential School Crisis Line is available to provide 24hr support to former residential school students and those affected by calling 1-866-925-4419. Additionally, the Indian Residential School Survivors Society (IRSSS) can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-721-0066 or on their website at irsss.ca.
BPL Events & Resources
Song of the Hermit Thrush: Birds around the world each have a distinctive sound. In Song of the Hermit Thrush, traditional storyteller Kelly Jonathan, Culture and Language Lead from Niwasa Kendaaawin Teg, shares the Indigenous creation story of how the hermit thrush got its ethereal and plaintive, high-pitched whistle song. Presented in partnership with Niwasa Kendaawin Teg and Hamilton Public Library. Watch anytime.
Summa: Free with your BPL card, you can stream thousands of Canadian documentaries and informational films featuring Indigenous voices.
Booklist: Indigenous Reads for Teens
Booklist: Indigenous Reads for Kids 2021
Booklist: Indigenous Reads for Kids 2020
Booklist: Indigenous Writers to Read
Booklist: Featured Fiction Picks by Indigenous Writers - Adults
Booklist: Indigenous Voices - Staff Non-Fiction Picks
Booklist: Featured Teen Picks by Indigenous Author
Community Virtual Events
Wed Jun 30
Indigenous History Month - Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund: Featuring Indigenous Elders, Knowledge Keepers, artists, and allies from communities coast to coast to coast. Register in advance. Live online - 2pm.
We proudly recognize that Burlington Public Library is located on the Treaty Lands and Territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit.