By: CEO Steve Perry
The topic of truth and reconciliation is not an easy one for me to write about. Part of that is because I’m white, which means I haven’t lived the injustices it is trying to bring to light. I do, however, know that I have benefitted, like all non-Indigenous people in Canada, from practices that were carried in the creation of the country we now know.
Our Indigenous communities have been marginalized intentionally over generations. Many people have denied it and others have known but not acted. Through the work of many across Canada the truth has become undeniable. The voices are too loud and too many to ignore. I will admit that I am still learning, as are we all, but I know that I am grateful to those who have the courage and wisdom to persist. We are becoming a better country for it.
I do believe that Canada is a great country, but I also believe that we have much to understand and learn about ourselves. Carrying on without any real reflection of how we got here is empty and naïve.
September 30th is the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. As with all things that are new, they will require some adjustment. It will be hard for all communities, Indigenous and not, to bring this truth to bear. We as a nation, province and organization must be open to listening to what our Indigenous communities have to say. A day is merely one of 365 in a year, this should not mean that we hide our history away for the other 364.
Carefor is proud of our work that supports Indigenous people, including our partnership with Ottawa Inner City Health and the Shepherds of Good Hope, and our partnership with Larga Baffin to provide nursing services to local Inuit peoples.
For me as an individual and for Carefor as an organization, truth and reconciliation is a journey. One that has started long before we became aware of it. September 30th will be a milestone in this journey, but it’s not the end. We, at Carefor, will honour this day and celebrate it as an opportunity to become more aware and inclusive of the people on whose ancestral lands we operate.