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Truth and Reconciliation Day 2023: Here's how to observe the statutory holiday in Metro Vancouver

Here are some of the ways Metro Vancouver residents can reflect on the day to honour Indigenous survivors of residential schools.

orange shirt day
File photo: Several hundred people took part in a march to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in North Vancouver on Sept. 30, 2022. Photo by Jason Payne /PNG

Saturday, Sept. 30, is Truth and Reconciliation Day in B.C., although many businesses and schools will take the statutory holiday on Monday.

The holiday is a response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action No. 80, which called on the federal government to establish a day to honour survivors, their families and communities.

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B.C. made it a paid statutory holiday earlier this year, following the federal government’s decision in 2021 to declare Sept. 30 a national truth and reconciliation holiday for its workers.

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Here are some events happening in Metro Vancouver. And, a good way to honour the Indigenous survivors and their families is to turn up in an orange shirt.

File photo: Several hundred people took part in a march to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in North Vancouver in 2022. Photo by Jason Payne/ PNG Photo by Jason Payne /PNG

North Vancouver

Indigenous artist James Harry discusses his newest project with SOS Children’s Village B.C.

Harry is of Squamish (Swxwú7meshḵ) and European descent and is the recipient of the 2022 Griffin Art Projects Indigenous Studio Award. There will also be a Q&A led by Indigenous curatorial assistant Emmett Hanly.

White Rock

Join the Semiahmoo First Nation’s 3rd Annual Walk for Truth and Reconciliation on Sept. 30, beginning near Grand Chief Bernard Robert Charles Plaza and ending at Semiahmoo Park. It runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

There will be youth speakers, Semiahmoo First Nation youth dancers, and a performance by “M’Girl,” an Indigenous women’s harmonizer and drum group. Folks can enjoy the complimentary chili and bannock, with plenty of activities for children.

Parking is free at the Semiahmoo parking lot located east of Semiahmoo Park. Organizers will hand out free orange shirts for the first 100 youth at Grand Chief Bernard Robert Charles Plaza.

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Maple Ridge

New Westminster

Attendees are encouraged to wear an orange shirt to the free family event. Organizers are also asking people not to consume drugs or alcohol out of respect.

The event runs from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.


Nisga’a Ts’amiks Vancouver Society will honour the lost children and survivors from the residential school system with a National Day For Truth And Reconciliation event at John Hendry Park at Trout Lake Community Centre on Sept. 30, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Everyone is welcome to attend and participate in the program. Orange shirts will be sold and there will be food vendors.

Also on Sept. 30:

• Song of Stars Entertainment Inc. will host a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation starting at noon at Song of Stars school (200-3466 West Broadway). To learn more, visit

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• Hastings Community Association hosts an Orange Shirt Day event at Templeton Welcome Garden. The event will include Indigenous speakers, drumming, Earth art, tea music, garden tours and ice cream.

• At UBC, there will be an Intergenerational March to commemorate Orange Shirt Day. Participants will gather at the outdoor amphitheatre starting at 11:45 a.m. and the march begins at 1 p.m.


Skookum Surrey will host an afternoon of drumming, sharing, tea and bannock at Holland Park in Surrey to mark National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. The free event on Sept. 30 runs from 3 to 5 p.m.

Is there an event for Saturday that Postmedia has missed that you would like to see included? Email

— with files from The Canadian Press

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  1. The grand entry takes place during the South Island powwow on National Truth and Reconciliation Day at Royal Athletic Park hosted by the Songhees Nation in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, September 30, 2022. The British Columbia government has introduced legislation to make Sept. 30 a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Day a paid statutory holiday.

    B.C. to make Sept. 30 a paid stat holiday for National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

  2. The Líl̓wat and N’Quatqua First Nations announced last Thursday the park would be shut down until Truth and Reconciliation Day on Sept. 30. A file photo of Upper Joffre Lake near Pemberton.

    'Reconciliation in action': Why First Nations sought to close Joffre Lakes park from the public

  3. Several hundred people took part in a march to recognize the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in North Vancouver, BC Friday, September 30. The march began at St. Thomas Aquinas Regional Secondary school and wound through North Vancouver to the Tsleil-Waututh Nation reserve. (Photo by Jason Payne/ PNG)

    Photos: 2022 Truth and Reconciliation Day in North Vancouver

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