A new report from Simon Fraser University's Centre for Dialogue highlights the ways in which Canadian society and government should approach reconciliation with communities affected by injustice.
The report details participant ideas from Reconciling Injustices in a Pluralistic Canada, one of the most comprehensive events held in Canada to discuss the experiences of those affected by historical and contemporary injustices in Canadian society.
Key themes of the report include the need for participatory decision-making, substantive government actions to demonstrate accountability and repair harm, and in-depth dialogue between communities and government to work through difficult issues and build long-term relationships.
Among the 109 participants at Reconciling Injustices in a Pluralistic Canada were members from communities affected by injustices, government officials, decision-makers, and members of the public.
The dialogue was informed by communities affected by a wide range of injustices, including Indian Residential Schools, the Chinese Head Tax and Exclusion Act, the Komagata Maru Incident, the Japanese Canadian Internment, the social and legal exclusion of LGBTQ Canadians, and Canada's refusal of Jewish refugees from the Holocaust.
Reconciling Injustices in a Pluralistic Canada was one of a series of events held between January and March 2014, as part of the programming for the 2014 Jack P. Blaney Award for Dialogue. Reconciliation Canada Ambassador, Chief Robert Joseph, is the 2014 Blaney Award recipient.
SFU's Centre for Dialogue uses dialogue to generate non-partisan and constructive communication. The centre partners with government, business, and community groups to explore issues of public importance.
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The report, Reconciling Injustices in a Pluralistic Canada: Shared Principles and Approaches, is available online: www.sfu.ca/content/dam/sfu/centre-for-dialogue/Programs/ReconcilingInjustices_FinalReport.pdf