National Indigenous Peoples Day

A message brought to you by the Human Rights and Race Relations Committee

June 21 is Canada’s National Indigenous Peoples Day, which is meant to celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures, and outstanding achievements of the nation's indigenous peoples.

There are three Indigenous groups in Canada – the First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.  The day was first celebrated in 1996 after it was proclaimed by then Governor General Roméo LeBlanc, 14 years after it was first called for by several Indigenous groups.  In 2017, the federal government renamed National Aboriginal Day as National Indigenous Peoples Day - Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde said he supported the change, saying the name is consistent with the international recognition of Indigenous Peoples and a resolution from his advocacy organization.

June 21 often coincides with the summer solstice and was therefore chosen as National Indigenous Peoples Day because of its cultural significance in indigenous cultures.   National Indigenous Peoples Day has become an integral part of a series of “Celebrate Canada” days that starts with National Indigenous Peoples Day on June 21, Quebec’s National Holiday on June 24 (aka St-Jean Batiste day), Canadian Multiculturalism Day on June 27 and concluding with Canada Day on July 1.

Please join CEIU in recognizing National Indigenous Peoples Day.

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