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Liberals introduce legislation to make Sept. 30 Indigenous reconciliation holiday

Click to play video 'Orange Shirt Day' Orange Shirt Day
WATCH: Orange Shirt Day – Sep 30, 2020

The Liberal government is reviving its effort to create a new statutory holiday to commemorate the victims and survivors of Indigenous residential schools.

Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault introduced legislation in the House of Commons today to establish Sept. 30 as a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation for federally regulated workers.

That date is already known as Orange Shirt Day, an occasion to commemorate the experiences of First Nations, Metis and Inuit children in residential schools.

Read more: N.B. students taught that ‘every child matters’ by Elsipogtog First Nation elder

It is so named in memory of a piece of clothing one First Nations girl in British Columbia had taken away from her on her first day at a residential school in 1973.

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Creating such a statutory holiday was one of the 94 recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which probed the history and legacy of residential schools.

The Liberal government introduced similar legislation in February 2019 but the bill died in the Senate when the last federal election was called.