The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR) today announced its collaboration with First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities to produce a new broadcast special, National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, in partnership with APTN, CBC/Radio-Canada, Insight Productions and Canadian Heritage. In recognition of the new federal statutory holiday, also known as Orange Shirt Day, this unique one-hour, commercial-free primetime special honours the stories and perspectives of Indigenous Peoples affected by the tragedies of the residential school system in Canada, with musical tributes and ceremonies in Indigenous communities across the land. National Day for Truth and Reconciliation will broadcast and stream live Thursday, September 30 at 8 p.m. ET on APTN, CBC, CBC Gem, ICI TÉLÉ and ICI TOU.TV.
“The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action 80 not only called for the establishment of a statutory holiday, but it is also an invitation to Indigenous Peoples and all Canadians to continue to reflect on the legacy and true history of residential schools. This day is set aside to honour all the children who survived residential schools as well as those that did not return. We invite everyone across the country to mark September 30 — Orange Shirt Day — by wearing orange and ‘lighting up’ our communities orange.” —Stephanie Scott, Executive Director, NCTR.
NCTR is consulting with Survivors, Chiefs and Elders from several Indigenous communities to discuss the stories and perspectives that will be shared in National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. As Canada works toward reconciliation and commemorates the children who did not return home, audiences across the country will hear from residential school Survivors, Knowledge Keepers, storytellers and musical artists from Indigenous communities with a focus on Sipekne’katik in Nova Scotia, Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc in Kamloops, Mani-Utenam in Quebec, Wanuskewin Heritage Park in Saskatoon, and Carcross, Yukon. The special will broadcast in French, English and includes multiple Indigenous languages.
In addition, NCTR is asking First Nations, Métis and Inuit Peoples to celebrate their languages, culture, and connection to the land, to be potentially included as part of the September 30th broadcast or highlighted on the NCTR website. Interested families can submit their short ‘Welcome’ video clip on the NCTR website by September 20.
“It’s been a painful year for Indigenous Peoples. In light of the recoveries of the unmarked graves, and in the pursuit of truth and reconciliation, we must take pause to honour the victims, the survivors, their families and communities. Education is key to reconciliation, and we will continue to be supportive of Indigenous initiatives that encourage truth and reconciliation. The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is a day for survivors to be reaffirmed that they matter, and so do those that continue to be affected.” —Monika Ille, CEO, APTN
“CBC/Radio-Canada is honoured to be broadcasting this prime-time special on the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This new program will help all of us reflect on the past, and hear the voices and stories that are central to the process of reconciliation.” —Catherine Tait, President and CEO, CBC/Radio-Canada
“We’re incredibly honoured to collaborate with the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation and Indigenous communities across the country as we honour this day and all come together to remember and reflect on our past and work toward Reconciliation through partnership and education.” —Lindsay Cox, SVP, Insight Productions
CBC/Radio-Canada to announce additional special programming to mark the first annual National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in the coming weeks.