Following the discovery of an unmarked mass grave on the grounds of a former residential school in B.C., there are renewed calls to cancel the Canada Day holiday on July 1.
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Since Sunday evening, the hashtag #CancelCanadaDay has been trending on Twitter, with many people calling for celebrations on July 1 to be cancelled in favour of a day of reflection.
Those in favour of cancelling Canada day celebrations argue that the day should be used to reflect on the injustices inflicted on Indigenous Peoples, including the lives lost at residential schools.
The calls for traditional festivities to be scrapped have been renewed following the discovery of the remains of 215 children at a former residential school in Kamloops on May 28.
Outside of social media, Indigenous rights group Idle No More are planning protests in Vancouver and Ontario on July 1. A message on the organization’s website reads, “We will not celebrate stolen Indigenous land and stolen Indigenous lives.”
It adds, “Instead we will gather to honour all of the lives lost to the Canadian State – Indigenous lives, Black Lives, Migrant lives, Women and Trans and 2Spirit lives – all of the relatives that we have lost.”
*This article’s cover image is for illustrative purposes only.
The Indian Residential School Survivors Society Emergency Crisis Line is available across Canada 24/7. Those who may need support can call 1-866-925-4419.