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JIBC campuses closed Sept. 30 for NDTR in recognition of residential school system impacts, need for healing and education

To the JIBC community,

Like many across the country, JIBC students, staff and faculty will be off tomorrow, Sept. 30 for the second National Day for Truth and Reconciliation (NDTR), an opportunity to acknowledge the horrific realities and lasting impacts of the residential school system for Indigenous Peoples in Canada. It will be a time for people to become involved in healing and education, improving our understanding, and learning the Truths about Canada’s colonial history.

According to the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, for more than 150 years “First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation children were taken from their families and communities to attend schools which were often located far from their homes.”

It is difficult to comprehend but the last such residential school in Canada did not close until the late 1990s. Further, the report of thousands of unmarked graves at former residential schools as recently as 2021, is a stark reminder of the ongoing, brutal and traumatic impact these places have had on Indigenous communities across Canada including in British Columbia.

The NDTR represents our moral obligation to honour and remember the Survivors of residential schools and those who did not come home, and the responsibility for Redress and Reconciliation.

To wear Orange is a visible reminder that all Indigenous children matter. I hope you will join me in wearing Orange tomorrow to visibly demonstrate your commitment to acknowledging Truth. A stronger, more inclusive, and just Canada depends on it.


All my relations,

Dr. Michel Tarko
JIBC President and CEO


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