Madam Speaker, September 30 is Orange Shirt Day. This marks the date on which children were taken from their homes and brought to residential schools. Orange Shirt Day evolved from the St. Joseph's Mission residential school commemoration event's retelling of Phyllis Jack's story. She had her new shirt taken away from her on the first day of school.
The legacy impacts all Canadians. However, the greatest impact plays out in indigenous communities, with the disruption of indigenous languages and cultures. The 1960s and 1970s child scoop and first nation, Inuit, and Métis in foster care, juvenile detention, and corrections directly relate, as do the wide range of health epidemics seen through high numbers of depression, alcoholism, drug abuse, and suicides today.
In the spirit of healing, reconciliation, and hope, it is past time to address policies that infringe on indigenous peoples across Canada.