Our Commitment to Truth and Reconciliation
The Family Support Institute of BC stands for Truth and Reconciliation. We commit to supporting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth, adults and families across the province.
We are guided by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which establishes the individual and collective rights of Indigenous peoples and protects them from discriminatory policies and practices. We call for an end to the systemic inequities faced by Indigenous people and their communities. As a provincial organization that supports individuals and families with disabilities we recognize and acknowledge that intersections of race and disability bring with them multiple marginalization. We commit to creating equitable spaces for Indigenous peoples, Indigenous staff, partners, and community members and will raise our voices in efforts to elevate issues and strive for positive change.
- We acknowledge that Indigenous peoples have suffered under colonial and postcolonial policies.
- We believe that to work respectfully with Indigenous nations, we all need to be aware of the collective impact that intergenerational trauma continues to have on Indigenous children, youth, adults and families and the intersections of disability and identifying as Indigenous.
- We need to learn and understand our shared history in a way that moves us towards a stronger and healthier future, with relationships rooted in mutual understanding and respect.
- We acknowledge and support the “Child Welfare” recommendations in their entirety knowing the prevalence of Aboriginal children in care.
- Given the FSIBC mandate of supporting children with disabilities, we emphasize that it is the Federal and Provincial governments responsibility to fully implement Jordan’s principle, and ensure that culturally safe supports and public services are also provided to Métis and Inuit children and to all Indigenous children living off-reserve in urban centres not covered under Jordan’s Principle. (TRC Calls to Action 1-5)
- We stand in solidarity with Indigenous peoples as we call upon all levels of government to provide annual reports or any current data requested by the National Council for Reconciliation so that it can report on the progress towards reconciliation. (TRC Calls to Action 55).
- Through this advocacy we will stand in solidarity to call for statistics of aboriginal children in care, and hold them accountable to the reasons for child apprehension, and give equitable access for culturally appropriate health support. (TRC Calls to action 55 i-vii)
- We know that by supporting Indigenous peoples and their right to self determination and choice, we strengthen society overall.
- We also know that our ability to provide transformative spaces and meaningful opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous leaders to forge new pathways together is a crucial contribution to Truth and Reconciliation.
- We are guided by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), which establishes the individual and collective rights of Indigenous peoples and protects them from discriminatory policies and practices, in particular we will advocate for stronger health policies to protect Indigenous people with disabilities in the Health systems (TRC Call to Action 23), and to for a government that will undertake reforms to the criminal justice system to better address the needs of offenders with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder – FASD. (TRC Calls to Action 34 i-iv)
- We recognize that we have a lot to learn about Indigenous rights, laws, governance systems, cultural identities, languages, and worldviews, and contributions to Canada’s history.
- We strive to be open, receptive, and respectful.
- We challenge ourselves to check and unlearn ingrained assumptions.
- We will Build knowledge and awareness of Truth and Reconciliation at FSI by offering learning/unlearning and capacity-building opportunities for staff, board and volunteers that will increase understanding of Indigenous peoples, cultures, languages, communities, histories, the impact of colonial actions, intergenerational trauma, and the role that we can play in walking the path of Reconciliation (TRC Calls to Action 92iii and 62i).
- We will seek meaningful and sustained relationships with Indigenous communities and organizations, locally, provincially and nationally, based on equality, good faith, and mutual respect, to work collaboratively towards equitable, accessible, and culturally relevant and responsive services for Indigenous children, youth, and families (TRC Call to Action 66).
FSI’s Truth and Reconciliation Commitment Statement has been developed with FSI’s Board and staff from across the province, in consultation with the FSI Diversity committee and other stakeholder partners from Indigenous communities.