The February 11th “Speaking My Truth” dialogue session, held at the First Nations Longhouse, presented a unique opportunity for discussion with Shelagh Rogers, Mike Degagné, and Glen Lowry, three creators of the book, Speaking My Truth: Reflections on Reconciliation and Residential Schools. The conversation that took place between the audience and these three speakers was thought-provoking and illuminating.

The three guests provided insight into their motivations and experiences in creating their book and also gave their views on the progress and future of the truth and reconciliation movement in Canada. The speakers acknowledged that tremendous progress has been made in drawing public attention to the stories of residential school survivors. However, they emphasized that, while it is important to tell these stories and expose the truth of residential schools, progress still needs to be made to reconcile these injustices. Gestures such as the official apology by Prime Minister Harper are appreciated, but must be backed up with productive dialogue and positive action, in order to construct a relationship of mutual trust and respect. Only after this relationship is established can true reconciliation and justice be achieved.

 

~ Nick Rowlands, February 18, 2014.

 

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