Brook McIlroy solemnly acknowledges and honours the 215 children found at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School, and the many others, known but yet uncounted. We pay our respects to these children, their families, and their communities, including Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation. Our support extends to all survivors of residential schools, who carry the lived experience of atrocities that First Nations, Inuit, and Métis children and families were subjected to in the attempt to erase their diverse languages, cultures, practices, and worldviews.
This is our shared history, a recent history that continues to impact Indigenous Peoples and communities today. We must learn the truth, heal, reconcile, and take action together over our collective past, present, and future. Widespread education on the rights, interests, histories, and cultures of Indigenous Peoples across Turtle Island is all the more urgent in the face of the revealed truth. All non-Indigenous Canadians have a responsibility to listen, learn, and reflect on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Final Report and Calls to Action. There are many other resources available, including other national commissions such as the MMIWG2S+ National Inquiry Calls to Justice. It is especially pertinent now, during Indigenous History Month, to reflect, learn, and take action into the long-term.
This somber reckoning strengthens our resolve to lift-up, amplify, and encourage Indigenous voices, perspectives, groups, and individuals in any of their pursuits. Whether it be seeking justice, community development, professional advancement, education, or healing and reclaiming culture through storytelling, beading, reconnecting with land—Indigenous Peoples and their knowledges, rights, and interests are important and worthy of recognition, celebration, and safeguarding. We at Brook McIlroy stand and walk with you.