Statement from Catherine McKenney on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

On the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, we are reminded that all of our City’s commitments must respect the principles of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Calls to Action, United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), and the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls inquiry, while leading the City through a path of reconciliation.

We must first accept the truth to move through a path of reconciliation. Among us are residents coping with the truth of what happened to themselves and their family members in the residential school system. That trauma has a deep impact on our Indigenous friends, neighbours and colleagues.

When we walk around Ottawa, so many landmarks remind us of colonialism — when Europeans arrived and imposed their own cultural values, religions, and laws over the Indigenous peoples who have always lived on and protected this land and water.

We must acknowledge the truth of what happened. 

Among the UNDRIP’s four themes is the right to free, prior and informed consent. 

This must be reflected in the City’s approach to community wellbeing; climate action; safety for Indigenous women, girls, and 2-Spirit people; and the rest of the City’s work.

As your Mayor, I will consult and work alongside Indigenous community members and leaders to ensure the principles of reconciliation are incorporated into the City’s decision-making.

Protecting our environment and respecting Indigenous stewardship of our land is one of our biggest responsibilities.

There are many ways to learn more, including:

Today may be difficult for you. Counselling Connect offers quick access to counselling by and for First Nations, Inuit and Métis community members.



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Catherine McKenney is running for Mayor to make Ottawa the greenest, healthiest, and most connected city in Canada. For more information visit

Media contact:
Heather Badenoch, [email protected] or 613-518-3170.