(Ottawa— 21 June, 2017) The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) marks National Aboriginal Day on June 21, 2017 against the backdrop of the150th anniversary of Canada’s confederation.
It is an appropriate moment to reflect upon both the countless contributions of Aboriginal Peoples, and also the historic wrongs committed against First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities in Canada.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission has documented the many pressing issues still requiring attention, and its report points to the critical role education policy can play in supporting the reconciliation process.
Indigenous rights, including the right to education, are inherent rights enshrined in Treaties, the Canadian Constitution, and international agreements. CAUT is committed to restoring, renewing, and regenerating Indigenous practices, languages, and knowledge.
On this year’s National Aboriginal Day, CAUT asks governments to provide new resources to support Aboriginal students to access post-secondary education, and urges academic staff associations and universities and colleges to support Indigenizing the academy by working together to establish equitable policies and practices that involve Aboriginal Peoples and Indigenous Knowledge in all aspects of campus life.
Lisa Keller, Communications Officer, Canadian Association of University Teachers
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