Canada Day is a day with many different meanings for all of us.  

For some it’s a celebration of our country; for many others, it’s a dark symbol of colonialism over the original inhabitants of our country: First Nations and Inuit. And for others, it’s their birthday (I see you Esther)!

It’s a pretty heavy discussion for Canada Day…but here’s a thought: instead of hitting back against something we don’t understand, let us practice acceptance. Instead of listening to the rage farming by the far ends of the political spectrum, let’s pause, take a breath, and listen to the facts, not the opinions. Let us celebrate what and who we are and commit to addressing how we got here. 

Gord Downie from The Tragically Hip challenged Prime Minister Trudeau to get busy fixing the issues identified in the report from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission…but its up to all of us to take on that responsibility—not only the Government of Canada. This country is an idea and as imperfect as it is, it’s up to all of us to make it better by recognizing its flaws and fulfilling its promise.

Why is a union tackling these issues? Because it affects our members in their workplaces and in their union. It affects how we stand in solidarity with each other. When we stand together – we win together.

Canada Day for this Union—OUR UNION—is a day where we practice the love and acceptance for each other. Where we commit to each other that we will change our future, by recognizing and addressing the harms of the past.

Respectfully,

Barbara Cape, President
SEIU-West

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