Statement on National Day of Truth and Reconciliation

Mayoral Candidate Reflects on Harms Caused by Residential Schools.

Toronto – Today, on the second National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day, Gil Penalosa asks the people of Toronto to join him in acknowledging how systemic racism and colonialism continue to impact Indigenous peoples in Canada today. 

“Public commemoration of the tragic and painful history of residential schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process,” said Penalosa. “I believe we must continue to create communities and systems that recognize and value Indigenous voices and rights.”

To mark the day, Gil will attend the Indigenous Legacy Gathering at Nathan Phillips Square.

“I, like many of us, have much to learn about the ongoing trauma experienced by Indigenous peoples in our community,” said Penalosa. “If I were to become mayor, I would work closely with the City’s Indigenous Affairs Office to educate myself and others about First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples and how best we can commemorate the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation in our city.” 

On September 30, Gil encourages Torontonians to join people across Canada in wearing an orange shirt to honour the thousands of Survivors of residential schools and remember those who did not make it.

Orange Shirt Day is an Indigenous-led grassroots commemorative day intended to raise awareness of the individual, family and community intergenerational impacts of residential schools, and to remind us that “Every Child Matters.” The orange shirt is a symbol of the stripping away of culture, freedom and self-esteem experienced by Indigenous children over generations. 

To learn more about National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day, please visit and the City of Toronto website.

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