Indigenous-led Transitional Committee formed to establish a National Council for Reconciliation
January 18, 2021 — Ottawa, ON — Unceded Traditional Territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg Nation – Crown–Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada.
The creation of a National Council for Reconciliation (NCR) as a national Indigenous-led oversight body is a vital milestone to implementing the Calls to Action from the final report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and in particular ensures the full implementation of Calls to Action 53-56. The NCR's core mandate would be to ensure Government of Canada's accountability for reconciling the relationship with Indigenous Peoples. Establishing the National Council for Reconciliation is one of the many actions that the Government of Canada is taking to advance reconciliation in Canada and is a clear priority of Indigenous partners.
Following their inaugural meeting on December 16, 2021, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations is announcing that an Indigenous-led Transitional Committee has been established. The Committee has already begun their work through discussions on the vision for the Council, identified key milestones and timelines, as well as a proposed engagement approach.
The Committee will engage with various groups as well as provinces and territories on the legislative framework for the National Council for Reconciliation, and will provide advice and recommendations to the Minister. The Committee will set up the Council's first Board of Directors, and establish the Council as an Indigenous-led, non-political organization, working to advance reconciliation.
"The Government recognizes the critical importance behind the establishment of a National Council for Reconciliation and supports the Transitional Committee in their work to advance this Call to Action. I would like to thank each of the members for agreeing to serve on the Committee. Your passion and commitment in leading this initiative will help to greatly advance the cause of reconciliation."
The Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations
"The establishment of a National Council for Reconciliation as an independent mechanism to monitor, oversee, develop measures related to recourse or remedy or other accountability measures is a very important priority and positive element to advancing reconciliation. As a former Truth and Reconciliation Commissioner and Residential School student, I am truly honoured to join the Transitional Committee to ensure we realize our collective vision of peaceful coexistence by finding those that will fulfill the Council's mandate of implementation."
Former Commissioner for the TRC / Ermineskin Cree Nation member
"The National Council for Reconciliation will be an important tool for Indigenous peoples to hold the Government accountable to achieving meaningful change for our peoples. I am honoured to have been asked by Minister Miller to bring my experience and perspectives to the work of the Transitional Committee."
Region 4 Councillor, Provisional Council of the Métis Nation of Ontario
"It is a privilege to be invited to participate in the Transitional Committee and to collaborate in the creation of the National Reconciliation Council alongside my colleagues. I look forward to delving into this important work and initiating the conversation with diverse Indigenous and non-Indigenous groups for the fulfillment of this mandate."
Executive Director of Val-D'Or Native Friendship Centre / Anishnabe from Timiskaming First Nation
"The establishment of the National Council for Reconciliation is an important step to generating and maintaining progress toward reconciliation with Inuit, First Nations and Métis Peoples. I look forward to working alongside my colleagues on the Transitional Committee to create this critical oversight body for reconciliation progress, including the full implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action."
Interim Executive Director of Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada / From Nunavut
"This initiative is a significant, tangible sign of the Calls to Action being implemented, and I welcome the opportunity to participate in this important work. The conversations that the Committee will share – and the change that the Council will ultimately create – represent significant advancements toward true reconciliation in this country."
Dr. Mike DeGagné
President and Chief Executive Officer of Indspire / Ojibway from Animakee Wa Zhing 37 First Nation
Establishing the National Council for Reconciliation through legislation directly responds to Calls to Action #53 and #54 and contributes to Calls to Action #55 and #56 from the final report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Federal Government's commitment to implementing the Calls to Action.
In December 2017, the Prime Minister announced the creation of an Interim Board of Directors to make recommendations on the creation of a National Council for Reconciliation.
In June 2018, an Interim Board of Directors presented its final report to the Minister, which contained 20 specific recommendations relating to the name, vision, mission, mandate, structure, membership, funding, reporting, and the legislation of the National Council for Reconciliation.
The Interim Board recommended that the National Council for Reconciliation be an Indigenous-led, non-political organization mandated to monitor and report on progress towards reconciliation and the Calls to Action implementation.
The Interim Board recommended that a Transitional Committee be established to complete the task of establishing the National Council for Reconciliation.
The Transitional Committee members that have been appointed by the Minister are former Truth and Reconciliation Commissioner Wilton Littlechild, Dr. Mike DeGagné, Ms. Edith Cloutier, Ms. Rosemary Cooper and Mr. Mitch Case.
For more information, media may contact:
Office of the Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations
Crown–Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
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