YMCAs in Canada Statement of Reconciliation
The YMCAs in Canada have a commitment to building healthy communities through the power of belonging. Communities that are safe and vibrant, with a strong economy and a sustainable environment. Communities within a Canada that demonstrates:
- leadership in improving the health of all people;
- respect for diversity and pluralism;
- combatting inequality;
- protecting its most vulnerable; and
- nurturing the potential of young people.
For our country to become the Canada We Want, the YMCA recognizes that we must place a special and intentional focus on Canada’s relationship with Indigenous Peoples.
The YMCA movement in Canada declares its commitment to reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples. We acknowledge and respect that our programs, services, and community facilities are on the traditional territory of Indigenous Peoples.
YMCAs in Canada are aware of the impact that colonial actions, including residential schools, have had on Indigenous Peoples, and we remain committed to understanding past injustices and will continue to move forward for a better future.
YMCAs in Canada are committed to playing our role in addressing the Calls to Action that have been made by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, such as:
19. …. close the gaps in health outcomes between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities;
92iii. Provide education for management and staff on the history of Aboriginal Peoples, including the history and legacy of residential schools, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Treaties and Aboriginal rights, Indigenous law, and Aboriginal Crown relations. This will require skills-based training in intercultural competency, conflict resolution, human rights, and anti-racism.
We are committed to developing and sharing program models, tools, and resources that will improve Indigenous Peoples’ access to our programs and services.
We will work with Indigenous communities as partners to find opportunities to have an active presence where it is desired.
YMCAs in Canada are committed to moving beyond a Statement of Reconciliation to the development and implementation of an Action Plan which will be reviewed regularly.
The YMCA Federation in Canada’s Statement of Reconciliation was unanimously approved by all YMCAs in Canada and strengthens our dedication to reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples and communities in Canada. It is reflective of the YMCA Federation’s commitment to fostering a sense of belonging for all and its values of inclusiveness, accountability, and collaboration.