Why do I have to care about reconciliation? That’s a question being asked by many non-Indigenous people in Canada (i.e., settlers).
Former Governor General Michäelle Jean eloquently answered this question during the relaunch of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada in 2009: “When the present does not recognize the wrongs of the past, the future takes its revenge. For that reason, we must never, never turn away from the opportunity of confronting history together—the opportunity to right a historical wrong.”
Suncor recently launched its Journey of Reconciliation, which is an update to its 2015 social goal, that focuses on relationships with Indigenous Peoples.
The JOR recognizes something the term “social goal” didn’t convey well, and that is relationships with Indigenous Peoples are a constantly evolving journey, with no end.
For Randy Elm, a Sixties Scoop survivor and Operations Trainer at Suncor’s Edmonton refinery, reconciliation is as personal as it gets.
“Reconciliation is a big ask. My hope is for people to learn more about Indigenous history in Canada,” says Randy. “We all have to build from history, but keep looking to the future.”
To hear more of Randy’s story and learn more about the Journey of Reconciliation, watch this video.
Our hearts are heavy for Indigenous Peoples across Canada as the discovery of more unmarked graves of children come to light. These are shocking discoveries to some people and a confirmation of known truths for Indigenous Peoples, communities, and families as some children who went to Indian Residential Schools never came home.
Tragically, there will be more of these discoveries to come. It is a reminder of the painful legacy of the residential school system that continues to cause trauma for families today. The actions of every Canadian must support Indigenous Peoples and communities as we grieve. We start with acknowledging the truths of our history and the systemic racism of the present to truly advance reconciliation in this country.
Those needing support at this difficult time can access the following:
- Indian Residential School Survivors and Family 24-Hour Crisis Line: 1-866-925-4419
- Crisis Services Canada (available 24/7/365): 1-833-456-4566
- Kids Help Phone (available 24/7 in English and French): 1-800-668-6868 or text 686868
- First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line (available 24/7 in Cree, Ojibway and Inuktitut upon request): 1-855-242-3310
- Suncor employees needing support at this difficult time can access our Employee and Family Assistance Program at workhealthlife.com and 1-844-880-9142.