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Thoughts to Reflect Upon for the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Thoughts to Reflect Upon for the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Create your own land acknowledgement – building on land acknowledgements from your organization (UW, UM), take time to consider what acknowledging the land means to you – the below points are based on a session one of our patient/public partners lead recently, based in part on this blog:

Start with self-reflection

  • Why am I doing this land acknowledgement? E.g. inspiring others to take action to support Indigenous communities, drawing attention to a particular issue
  • What is my end goal? What do I hope listeners will do after hearing it?


  • What are my personal values, social and geographical location, possible biases, in relation to Indigenous peoples, the land we share, and decolonization?

Do your homework

Use appropriate language

  • Racism, prejudice, stolen land, forced removal, stolen children, genocide, ethnic cleansing

Past, present and future

  • Acknowledge ongoing harms and systemic issues that Indigenous people continue to face as a result of colonization
  • Acknowledge the humanity of Indigenous people and show appreciation for their culture and contributions

Needs not be uninviting

  • Function as a celebration of Indigenous communities

#94in94 Campaign – REconciliACTION – provides 6 steps for creating your own plan.

Upcoming Events

To be announced…

  • Understanding Diversity, Equity and Inclusion – Inceptia (replay)
    Higher education is no stranger to DEI programming. Yet, with a renewed focus on creating equitable and inclusive learning spaces, there may be misconceptions as to what DEI actually IS – and what it isn’t. Join us for a thirty-minute lunch and learn session to better understand how we define diversity, equity and inclusion and how we may integrate DEI into the work we do for students. Participants will come away from the session with a resource guide for further developing DEI initiatives.
  • Broadbent Leadership Training – What is Power?
    Develop an understanding of power and social change, including practical approaches to campaigning and organizing. Learn how policies are set and decisions made, considering the change(s) you seek and who has the power to make them.
Recommended Reading

*available on

  • *How to Be An AntiRacist by Ibram X. Kendi
  • *Indigenous Writes: A Guide To First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Issues in Canada by Chelsea Vowel
  • *Me and White Supremacy: Combat Racism, Change the World and Become a Good Ancestor by Layla Saad
  • *Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada From Slavery to Present by Robyn Maynard
  • The Skin We’re In: A Year of Black Resistance and Power by Desmond Cole
  • *21 Things You May Not Know about the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality by Bob Joseph
  • Until We Are Free: Reflections on Black Lives Matter in Canada. Eds. Rodney Diverus, Sandy Hudson, and Syrus Marcus Ware
  • *White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo
  • The Equity Myth: Racialization and Indigeneity at Canadian Universities
    • Dr. Malinda Smith is a nationally recognized leader in EDI. Dr. Malinda Smith joins Uof Calgary as vice-provost (Equity, Diversity and Inclusion). She is widely regarded for her contributions to developing next-generation equity policies, including several task force reports and advisory roles in the post-secondary sector and at various levels of government. A 2018 Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Fellow, her research, “A Seat at the Table: Engendering Black Canadian Pasts and Futures,” focuses on unearthing stories of Black hidden figures in Canadian politics, law and higher education. She is co-editor of the forthcoming volume, Nuances of Blackness in the Canadian Academy. Dr. Smith also serves on Statistics Canada’s Expert Working Group on Black Communities in Canada, and on immigration and ethnocultural statistics.
    • As the first person of colour to serve on the executive of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Dr. Smith, as vice-president equity, spearheaded Equity Matters on the Ideas-Idees blog, and worked to embed EDI in Congress programming. She also has advanced equity as a member of the Canadian Association of University Teachers’ Racialized Academic Staff working group and as equity chair of her university’s faculty association. In addition, she contributed to EDI initiatives in national granting agencies, including the Dimensions EDI Charter and the Canada Research Chairs Program’s Advisory Committee on EDI Policy.
    • Dr. Smith is the co-author of The Equity Myth: Racialization and Indigeneity at Canadian Universities, editor or co-editor of five books and numerous articles and book chapters. She has received numerous awards and honours including most recently: the NBCC Rosalind Smith Professional Award (2020), the ISA’s Susan S. Northcutt Award (2020), a Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Fellowship (2018), the ISA-Canada Distinguished Scholar Award (2018-2019), and a University of Alberta Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Award, (2018).

Did you know

AESES is affiliated with the Confederation of Canadian Unions (CCU).

AESES' Charter Meeting was held in December of 1972.

We offer bursaries for AESES dependents at both universities.

Anyone can attend a Board meeting by calling the AESES Business Office prior to the meeting and confirming their attendance.

AESES requires new volunteers for various committees. Please contact the Business Office if you are an AESES member interested in joining one of our committees.