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Truth-telling, and TRC community consultations

Five open discussions will inform the university’s response to calls to action set by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

The Queen's Truth and Reconciliation Commission Task Force formed in early 2016 to address calls to action outlined in the December 2015 final report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada. (University Communications)

The Queen’s University Truth and Reconciliation Commission Task Force has set dates for five open consultation sessions – public meetings that provide a forum for community discussion and feedback, and will inform the university’s process of addressing calls to action set out by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

“This is a truth-telling process, and we would like all members of the community to participate in these sessions and to feel comfortable providing feedback,” says Mark Green, Professor and Associate Head, Civil Engineering, who co-chairs the task force along with Jill Scott, Vice-Provost (Teaching and Learning). “We would especially like to hear Indigenous voices, and at the same time, create a safe space for engagement with all groups – Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, faculty, staff, and community members.”

Consultation sessions

Five consultation sessions will take place over the course of the fall term:

Governance and Strategic Planning; Space and Place: Sept. 26, 2:30-3:30 pm, McLaughlin Room, John Deutsch University Centre
Student Access, Transition, and Student Support Services: Oct. 20, 4:30-6 pm, McLaughlin Room, John Deutsch University Centre
Indigenous Faculty/Staff Recruitment and Indigenous Research: Nov. 7, noon-1:30 pm, Room 202, Robert Sutherland Hall
Academic Programming and Academic Planning: Nov. 7, 3:30-5 pm, Room 202, Robert Sutherland Hall
Awareness and Climate: Nov. 23, 4-5:30 pm, Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts

Individuals or groups who wish to participate in one or more of these sessions are asked to email trctaskforce@queensu.ca for further information and to confirm attendance.

Both co-chairs emphasize the importance of participation by non-Indigenous members of the university community in the consultation process. “This is a vital part of reconciliation, and noted clearly by Justice Murray Sinclair when he said, upon delivering the federal commission’s final report: ‘Reconciliation is not an Aboriginal problem. It is a Canadian problem. It involves all of us.’ This is equally important at Queen’s,” says Dr. Green.

The consultation process follows the release of the task force’s preliminary report in August. The preliminary report details the consultation and information-gathering process, which will inform the task force’s final report and proposals.

Each of the five open consultation sessions focuses on a particular theme:

  • Governance and Strategic Planning; Space and Place
  • Student Access, Transition, and Student Support Services
  • Indigenous Faculty/Staff Recruitment and Indigenous Research
  • Academic Programming and Academic Planning
  • Awareness and Climate

To help guide the consultation process, the task force has developed a set of questions to encourage discussion and generate input from the Queen’s, Kingston, and local Indigenous communities.

In addition to the public consultation sessions, and to preserve the privacy of those who wish to provide feedback, the task force welcomes written submissions (confidential with all identifying factors removed prior to distribution to the task force) emailed to trctaskforce@queensu.ca. Community members can also participate in a small group or one-on-one meeting with a member of the task force.

More information, and the preliminary report, is available from the Office of the Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic).

See more Truth and Reconciliation Commission stories