Today, the University of Ottawa will sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba. In doing so, it will join a network of 22 other official partners who seek to preserve the past and forge new alliances to ensure that no one ever questions the legacy of the Residential School system.
“We are thrilled to see the University take up the challenge of the Truth and Reconciliation journey,” explained Ry Moran, Director of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation. “We look forward to working closely together to advance Truth and Reconciliation in this country.”
The Centre was created by the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement and houses all of the materials gathered by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC). Its mandate is to preserve the memory of Canada’s Residential School system and its legacy, to broadly educate the public, to engage with Survivors and communities and to conduct new research.
“Working collaboratively is at the heart of the journey of Truth and Reconciliation,” explained Jacques Frémont, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ottawa. “It is a partnership that the University of Ottawa undertakes humbly and with great commitment. One that, we hope, will strengthen relationships with the Indigenous community and help to forge new alliances.”
In signing this MOU, the University of Ottawa resolves to help strengthen Canada’s relationship with Indigenous peoples in three ways:
- Deepening the understanding of Indigenous knowledge and culture among all students, staff, and faculty members;
- Increasing the University’s engagement with Indigenous communities; and
- Exploring innovations in teaching and learning to foster Indigenous student success and increase understanding of Indigenous peoples among all students.
“Through our combined efforts we can collectively aspire to create the country long-aspired for by those most harmed by it,” concludes Moran.
Establishing a National Centre to forever preserve the truths of Canada’s Indian Residential Schools was one of the most important responsibilities given to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.
The new MOU between the Centre and the University of Ottawa highlights that the path forward is one of collective actions and collective shared responsibility to remember, acknowledge, and honour the residential school survivors.
Manager (acting), Media Relations