Treaties Recognition Week, 2023

map of treaties in Ontario

Submitted by Shirley Chaisson and Mary Ann Lyons, Indigenous Student Advisors 

In 2016, Ontario passed the first legislation of its kind in Canada declaring the first full week of November as Treaties Recognition Week. This year, Treaties Recognition Week is November 5-11, 2023. 
Treaties Recognition Week helps students and the public learn about treaties from diverse Indigenous perspectives and encourages greater understanding of the importance of treaties in Ontario.

Treaties negotiated in Ontario over the past 250 years are the foundation of the relationship between governments and Indigenous peoples. They represent a mutual commitment to building a prosperous future for everyone. Historical treaties are important to the ongoing relationship between the Crown and First Nations and are still relevant today. By building understanding of these agreements, we are moving towards reconciliation with Indigenous people. This helps create equitable and respectful relationships, enabling a better way forward together. 

Treaties Recognition Week also responds to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action to increase treaty awareness. Click here for additional resources and learning opportunities.

November 8: Indigenous Veterans’ Day
National Indigenous Veterans Day is a memorial day observed in Canada in recognition of aboriginal contributions to military service, particularly in the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War. It occurs annually on 8 November. The day was first commemorated in 1994  

November 15: Rock UR Mocs 

Rock Your Mocs is a worldwide social media event that began in 2011 as a way to wear moccasins in unity. The event also provides an opportunity to share stories, learn more about diversity, and promote cultural pride. Rock Your Mocs is an annual week-long campaign running from November 13th to the 19th, but the original day will always be November 15th. We encourage students and staff to wear their moccasins or mukluks this week with pride! 

November 16: Louis Riel Day

Every year on November 16th, MNO citizens, MNO Chartered Community Councils and communities hold events across the province to celebrate Métis culture, recognize the many contributions of the Métis to Canada, and to highlight the struggles that Métis continue to face. 

November 16 is the anniversary of Riel’s execution in 1885. During that year, Riel led Métis people in the Northwest Resistance, which was a stand against the Government of Canada because it was encroaching on Métis rights and our way-of-life. The Métis were defeated at the siege of Batoche and the Canadian government captured Riel. He was eventually put on trial where he was convicted of treason and executed.

As a result, Métis people across Canada were labeled as traitors and for generations many felt the need to hide their Métis culture and heritage. Despite this oppression, many Métis people found a way to preserve their way-of-life and passed it on to current generations. 

Join the MNO Post Secondary team on November 16th from 2:00pm-3:00pm for a virtual presentation honoring Métis leader Louis Riel. Register for the 2023 event here

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