Statement from Minister Bennett and Minister Philpott on International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples


August 9, 2018 - Ottawa, ONTARIO – The Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Carolyn Bennett, and the Minister of Indigenous Services, Jane Philpott, issued the following statement today:

“We are pleased to celebrate August 9th as International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples. We encourage Canadians to join with us in acknowledging the achievements and contributions of Indigenous peoples around the world, and to learn more about the richness of their heritage, traditions, cultures and languages. We have much to learn from Indigenous ways of knowing and doing, which are rooted in deep respect for the land and all its living beings and which always considers the well-being of future generations.

Prime Minister Trudeau has emphasized that there is no relationship more important to Canada than the one with Indigenous peoples. As Ministers of two new departments, we are proud to work closely with First Nations, Inuit and Métis to make progress on joint priorities such as health, education, housing and water – areas that will help to improve socio-economic conditions for families and communities and accelerate the progress to self-determination.

We are firmly committed to implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action – which set out a road map for all levels of government, civil society, educational institutions and the private sector to ensure Indigenous rights are recognized and affirmed. The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples states that the recognition of rights is the prerequisite for the survival, dignity and well-being of Indigenous peoples. On this day, we acknowledge that the path behind us was marred by the denial of the inherent and Treaty rights of Indigenous peoples. Today, we reiterate our commitment to the path ahead being grounded in the recognition and affirmation of those rights.

As we acknowledge the wrongs of the past, we remain dedicated to achieving a profound shift in the relationship between the Crown and First Nations, Inuit and Métis – a relationship based upon the recognition of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership.

Reconciliation is not just the work of governments. On this very special day, we encourage all Canadians to honour the diverse cultures of Indigenous peoples around the globe and to reflect upon our shared responsibility in the journey of reconciliation towards a fairer, sustainable and more prosperous Canada.


James Fitz-Morris
Director of Communications and Issues Management
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

Media Relations
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

Rachel Rappaport
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Jane Philpott
Minister of Indigenous Services

Media Relations
Indigenous Services Canada

Join the conversation about Crown-Indigenous Relations and the North:

Twitter: Minister Carolyn Bennett
Facebook: Minister Carolyn Bennett

Join the conversation about services for First Nations, Inuit and Métis:

Twitter: Minister Jane Philpott
Facebook: GovCan – Indigenous Peoples

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