113’s United Indigenous Council leads Sunrise Ceremony to commemorate National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Brent Pelletier, a member of the United Indigenous Council of ATU Local 113, led the Sunrise Ceremony to commemorate Orange Shirt Day and the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation.

The Executive Board and Members of ATU Local 113 joined in the ceremony to acknowledge the dark history of Canada and the resilience of Indigenous Peoples of Turtle Island.

In support of the Indigenous people who are healing from the atrocities of the Residential School System, the ‘Every Child Matters’ flag was raised and the Honour Song recited to the children whose lives were taken and the survivors, families and communities that were left to put the broken pieces together.

Pelletier, a member of ATU Local 113 for 29 years, said, “The recovery of the 215 children opens the door to the truths of what the survivors have always known and reported to the Truth and Reconciliation Inquiry. Those numbers have increased to over 10,000 and still counting. We will never forget the horrific demise of our children. So, my message to our young people is: Grow your hair long for every time it was cut. Learn our language for every time you were beaten for speaking it, the same languages that were used to win the Second World War. Live your life to the fullest potential.”

President Marvin Alfred acknowledged the work of ATU Local 113’s United Indigenous Council, “Their courage to take on difficult conversations, their efforts to share their knowledge, their commitment to help bring change has led us to this moment– a moment of change in our union and in our workplace.  We will continue our work in solidarity.”