Land Acknowledgment

We acknowledging that we on aboriginal land that has been inhabited by Indigenous people from the beginning.

As settlers, we are grateful for the opportunity to meet here and we thank all the generations of people who have taken care of this land – for thousands of years.

Long before today, as we gather here, there have been peoples who have been the stewards of this place.  In particular, we acknowledge the Anishnabek, Haudenosaunee (Iroquois), Ojibway/Chippewa peoples.

We recognize and deeply appreciate their historic connection to this land.  We also recognize the contributions of Métis, Inuit, and other Indigenous peoples, both in shaping and strengthening this community, our province and our country as a whole.

As settlers, this recognition of historic importance must also be clearly connected to our collective commitment in making the challenge of Truth and Reconciliation an authentic and ever present reality in our community.

Indigenous Identity and Heritage

Our Commitment to Truth and Reconciliation

On June 6, 2017, the Ontario child welfare sector unanimously agreed to prioritize Reconciliation with Indigenous communities through nine key commitments. Each Children’s Aid Society (CAS) has committed to:

Reduce Children In Care

Reduce the number of Indigenous children in care.

Reduce the Number of Legal Files

Reduce the number of legal files involving Indigenous children and families.

Formal Customary Care Agreements

Increase the use of formal customary care* agreements.

Indigenous Representation and Involvement

Ensure Indigenous representation and involvement at the local Board of Directors.

Staff Training

Implement mandatory Indigenous training for staff.

Jordan’s Principle

Change their inter-agency protocol to include Jordan’s Principle** as a fundamental principle.

Develop a Unique Agency-Based Plan

In consultation with the Indigenous communities, develop a unique agency-based plan to better address the needs of the children and families from those communities.

Develop Relationships

Continue to develop relationships between their agency and the local Indigenous communities.

Historical Files

Assist those individuals wanting to see their historical files by accessing and providing the information they request.

*Customary care leaves the responsibility for the care of the child with the Indigenous community.

**Jordan’s Principle is a child-first principle aimed at ensuring that services to First Nations children are not denied, delayed, or disrupted due to jurisdictional disputes. The principle is named for Jordan River Anderson, a young boy from Norway House Cree Nation in Manitoba. Learn more here.