Truth and Reconciliation

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Canada’s first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is on September 30.

To honour the healing journey of Indigenous lives impacted by the residential schools, we encourage you to join us in learning and hearing from First Nations, Inuit and Métis (FNMI) voices across Canada, through a variety of displays, virtual programs and books written by the Indigenous voices of our nation.

Please note: All Library locations will be closed on Sept. 30 as we reflect on the tragic history and ongoing legacy of residential schools, and to honour the survivors, their families and communities.

More about Truth and Reconciliation

This year, the federal government passed legislation to observe September 30 as a federal statutory holiday called the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

The establishment of the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is in response to the 80th call to action in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action.

Call to Action #80. We call upon the federal government, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, to establish, as a statutory holiday, a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation to honour Survivors, their families, and communities, and ensure that public commemoration of the history and legacy of residential schools remains a vital component of the reconciliation process.

Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC)

The official mandate of the TRC is found in Schedule "N" of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, which includes the principles that guided the commission in its important work.

  • Between 2007 and 2015, the Government of Canada provided approximately $72 million to support the TRC's work. The TRC spent six years travelling to all parts of Canada and heard from more than 6,500 witnesses. In addition, the TRC hosted seven national events across Canada to educate and engage the Canadian public about the history and legacy of the residential schools' system and to share and honour the experiences of former students and their families.
  • The TRC created a historical record of the residential schools' system, and as part of this process, the Government of Canada provided over five million records to the TRC. All of the documents collected are kept by the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba.
  • In June 2015, the TRC held its closing event in Ottawa and presented the executive summary of the findings contained in its multi-volume final report, including 94 "calls to action" (or recommendations) to further reconciliation between Canadians and Indigenous peoples.
  • In December 2015, the TRC released its entire six-volume final report. All Canadians are encouraged to read the summary or the final report to learn more about the terrible history of Indian Residential Schools and its sad legacy. To read all six-volumes of the reports, visit your nearest RHPL or visit the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation.
More about Residential Schools

The Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement 

One of the elements of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement was the establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada to facilitate reconciliation among former students, their families, their communities and all Canadians.

More than 150,000 Indigenous children were removed and separated from their families and communities to attend residential schools. While most of the 139 Indian Residential Schools ceased to operate by the mid-1970s, the last federally-run school closed in the late 1990s.

In May 2006, the Settlement Agreement was approved, and the implementation of the Agreement began in September 2007-with the intent to bring a fair and lasting resolution to the legacy of the Indian Residential Schools.

Bringing closure to the legacy of Indian residential schools lies at the heart of reconciliation and a renewal of the relationships between Indigenous peoples who attended these schools, their families and communities, and all Canadians.

For Schools and Teachers

In our Catalogue

A Subject search for Indigenous Peoples - Canada provides the results for non-fiction and fiction titles that have been filtered for children and young adults.


First Nations, Metis & Inuit Education Association of Ontario

The First Nations, Metis & Inuit Education for Association of Ontario support and help all educators understand issues related to First Nation, Metis and Inuit peoples in Canada, as well as, offer strategies for teaching this content to all learners.

Treaties in Ontario

Did you know? Legislation passed in 2016 declaring Treaties Recognition Week as the first week of November each year. Treaties Recognition Week is an opportunity to learn about the significance of treaties and the importance to all Ontarians.

Learn about treaties, treaty relationships and treaty rights in Ontario through the Provincial Government's website.

Curious to learn about treaties that cover areas where we live, work and go to school? Explore Ontario's digital treaties map.

Indigenous Peoples of Governance


Author Visit: David A. Robertson

Learn about David's many publications for young readers and adults, and hear about his journey as an Indigenous writer in Canada. Presentation will be followed by a Q&A.

Find out more

Indigenous Authors

Libraries of York and Durham Regions have come together to present three Canadian Indigenous Children's Authors: David A. Robertson, Melanie Florence and Jay Odjick.

Find out more

Did you know? Decolonizing our Catalogue

Inclusivity is an important goal of ours today and every day. Earlier this year, staff started to consider how we can contribute to Canada’s reconciliation with our Indigenous peoples. In referencing documents created by larger library systems who consulted with Indigenous peoples, we’ve completed the process of changing terms like “Eskimo” to “Inuit” or “Indians of North America” to "Indigenous peoples.”