Home » What You Need to Know About National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30

What You Need to Know About National Day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30

by Shanine Sealey

Canada currently celebrates a total of five “statutory” holidays, which are holidays that all employees are entitled the day off with pay, that take place throughout all of the provinces and territories. These include New Year’s Day, Good Friday, Canada Day, Labour Day and Christmas Day.

In Saskatchewan, we have a total of ten “statutory” holidays, which add extra Provincial holidays, including Family Day, Victoria Day, Saskatchewan Day, Thanksgiving Day and Remembrance Day.

Additionally, some businesses choose to recognize Boxing Day and/or Easter Monday as a complimentary day off; however, it is not an obligation.

This September 30th marks the first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in Canada, which coincides with Orange Shirt Day, a day that was created as a way to honour Indigenous children and help teach Canadians about the residential school system and the impact that they had on Indigenous communities.

This day comes following a call to action by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission that took place in 2015.
When it comes to the new National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, it is a paid requirement for federal employees so places such a Canada Post, Via Rail, banks, post offices and others that work under federal regulations will be closed for the day.

Some provinces and territories, which include British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and the Northwest Territories have chosen to observe this day; however, it is not mandatory and is left to the discretion of the business owner.

Saskatchewan, Alberta, New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario, have chosen not to recognize September 30th as a statutory holiday. For Saskatchewan specifically, it is noted that “this is a new statutory holiday for federally regulated workplaces, or those who have a collective bargaining agreement that identifies they will observe federal statutory holidays.” It also states that the day is not a statutory holiday in Saskatchewan for employees who are not federally regulated.

The municipal governments in Regina, Saskatoon and Prince Albert all announced that they will be recognizing September 30 as a statutory holiday. The City of Martensville will also be closing all city-ran facilities to honour the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

“It is in our work to try to be part of the reconciliation process, and it is also in the collective bargaining agreement that if there is a new statutory holiday set by the federal government, it will be honoured,” Dillon Shewchuk, City of Martensville Community Economic Development Manager, explained.

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