As articulated in the opening words of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission summary report, “the central goals of Canada’s Aboriginal policy were to eliminate Aboriginal governments; ignore Aboriginal rights; terminate the Treaties; and through a process of assimilation, cause Aboriginal peoples to cease to exist as distinct social, cultural, religious and racial entities in Canada.”
Residential schools were one of many devastating strategies to further these goals. Canadian governments continue to disregard, limit, and terminate Indigenous rights, such as land and Treaty rights, while Canadian past and current colonial practices are mirrored elsewhere in the world with Indigenous peoples.
KAIROS Canada is committed to truth, healing, and reconciliation for the past and Indigenous justice for the present. We support an active process of decolonization— with ourselves, our communities, our churches, and our country, building just and respectful relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. We support contributing towards the recognition of Indigenous peoples as distinct peoples and nations, with rights to land and self-determination.
KAIROS is committed to a new relationship with Indigenous peoples in Canada and around the globe, a relationship based on mutual respect, equity and the full realization of Indigenous peoples’ rights. Core to this commitment is the principled implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Please visit the Indigenous Rights Program page at kairoscanada.org to learn more.
Current priorities include decolonization and reconciliation education, through KAIROS Canada’s most popular teaching tool the KAIROS Blanket Exercise, implementation of the TRC Calls to Action through Winds of Change commitment to free prior and informed consent.
KAIROS supports this work through the Mother Earth and Resource Extraction, Women Defending Land and Water digital hub of information and resources. The MERE Hub, is KAIROS’ Gender Justice Program offering and exploration of the gendered impacts of resource extraction on Indigenous women, and solidarity with global, Indigenous-led struggles such as justice for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and equity for First Nations’ children.