In 2015, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission released a report designed to facilitate reconciliation between the Canadian state and Indigenous Peoples. Its call to honour treaty relationships reminds us that we are all treaty people — including immigrants and refugees living in Canada. The contributors to this volume, many of whom are themselves immigrants and refugees, take up the challenge of imagining what it means for immigrants and refugees to live as treaty people. Through essays, personal reflections and poetry, the authors explore what reconciliation is and what it means to live in relationship with Indigenous Peoples.
Speaking from their personal experience — whether from the education and health care systems, through research and a community garden, or from experiences of discrimination and marginalization — contributors share their stories of what reconciliation means in practice. They write about building respectful relationships with Indigenous Peoples, respecting Indigenous Treaties, decolonizing our ways of knowing and acting, learning the role of colonized education processes, protecting our land and environment, creating food security and creating an intercultural space for social interactions.
Perhaps most importantly, Reconciliation in Practice reminds us that reconciliation is an ongoing process, not an event, and that decolonizing our relationships and building new ones based on understanding and respect is empowering for all of us — Indigenous, settler, immigrant and refugee alike.