Truth & Reconciliation

truth and reconciliation

Grand Chief Wilton Littlechild at TRC closing events – credit Ben Powless

Truth and Reconciliation Commission – From Apology to Action

CFSC (Quakers) Indigenous Rights Icon SmallIn 2007 the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) was established as part of the legal settlement of the largest class-action lawsuit in Canadian history. The TRC’s mandate was:

to learn the truth about what happened in the residential schools and to inform all Canadians about what happened in the schools. The Commission will document the truth of what happened by relying on records held by those who operated and funded the schools, testimony from officials of the institutions that operated the schools, and experiences reported by survivors, their families, communities and anyone personally affected by the residential school experience and its subsequent impacts.

In 2015 the TRC released its report including 94 Calls to Action which we urge all Canadians to read and strive towards in the ongoing process of reconciliation.

At Canadian Yearly Meeting in 2011 Canadian Friends approved this minute:

We are being invited by the Indigenous peoples of Canada as represented by the Indian Residential School Survivors, through the Indian Residential School Survivors Settlement Agreement, to enter a journey of truth finding and reconciliation. We encourage all Friends, in their Meetings for Worship and Monthly and Regional Meetings, boldly to accept this invitation and to engage locally, regionally and nationally, actively seeking ways to open ourselves to this process.

CFSC was honoured to witness and participate in the closing events of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. Watch a clip from this powerful and important closing below:

We welcomed the report and Calls to Action of the TRC as deeply important for genuine reconciliation. Together with our partners we’ve also called on the Government of Canada to follow the lead of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

CFSC has produced a resource for Quakers and others who wish to engage with the TRC Calls to Action.

Truth and Reconciliation: Quakers in Action. (PDF)

We encourage you to make use of this resource and are happy to help, so feel free to contact us!

Indigenous Voices project

What does reconciliation mean to you?

What suggestions do you have for non-Indigenous people to respectfully engage in reconciliation?

Have you seen a change in how people are engaging in reconciliation in recent years?

If you had to choose one thing that you wish every person knew about reconciliation, what would that be?

What are your thoughts on how to be a good ally?

Many settlers wish they could ask questions like these to Indigenous people without appearing foolish or rude. Canadian Friends Service Committee knows that not every settler has the opportunity to have open dialogue with Indigenous friends and neighbours. This is why we want to give you a chance to hear the answers to these questions from some of our Indigenous partners, people that we work closely with and trust to give us honest responses, and who trust us enough to engage with this project!

Watch some of our Indigenous friends and partners responding to these questions.


Read our 2019 report of the reconciliation actions of Friends from across Canada.

Learn more about our work supporting the human rights of Indigenous peoples.