In support of Assiniboine Credit Union’s (ACU) commitment to truth and reconciliation, and to ensure all employees have additional time to further engage in their own personal journeys, ACU will be observing Thursday, September 30, National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, as a general holiday. The new federal statutory holiday, which was established this year as an opportunity to recognize and commemorate the tragic history and ongoing legacy of residential schools, as well as honour their survivors, their families and their communities, is currently designated as a statutory holiday for federal employees and agencies only.
“As a credit union with a mission and vision to support a sustainable future for all, we have a responsibility to engage in reconciliation.” says Kevin Sitka, ACU President & CEO. “We recognize the importance of reflecting and participating in reconciliation which means encouraging our employees to have space for important, meaningful dialogues both inside and outside of the workplace”.
Since 2016, ACU’s reconciliation journey has been led by its Indigenous Leadership Circle (ILC). The ILC consists of employees from varying backgrounds rooted in Indigenous cultures and experiences, and are also representative of cross-functional business units from across ACU. The ILC has provided opportunities for all ACU employees to participate in numerous learning activities and experiences including, but not limited to, KAIROS Blanket Exercise, Mikinak-Keya Spirit Tour and and a Treaty 1 Tour. The ILC has also made arrangements for Elders to speak to ACU employees through sessions the group has named “Feast and Teach.”
Along with its internal activities, ACU has been a leader in reconciliation within the community. As one of the first financial institutions in the country to make a public commitment in response to the 94 Calls to Action, ACU was the very first credit union to be a signatory of Winnipeg’s Indigenous Accord.
Ways to participate in the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation:
September 30 is also Orange Shirt Day which is held annually to honour survivors of residential schools. This meaningful and significant movement started in 2013 to recognize the month in which Indigenous children were removed from their parents. One significant way people show their solidarity towards the cause is by proudly wearing orange shirts – something Resident School Survivor Phyllis Webstad was not allowed to do.
ACU’s Chief People Officer Kim Champion Taylor says there is significance of Orange Shirt Day on both a personal and professional level. “Orange Shirt Day provides us with an opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to both truth and reconciliation. Wearing an orange shirt can start a conversation and continue promoting meaningful dialogue about our individual truth and reconciliation journeys.“
Another way people can participate is by engaging in the many valuable resources and educational opportunities being shared in the Truth and Reconciliation reports and Calls to Action that are available through the National Centre of Truth and Reconciliation website.
Assiniboine Credit Union is a financial co-operative in Manitoba with branches in Winnipeg, Thompson and Gillam.
As a certified B Corp, ACU uses its expertise and resources to foster self-reliant and sustainable communities, while taking care to consider the impact of business decisions on employees, members, the environment and the communities it serves.
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Assiniboine Credit Union
Assiniboine Credit Union