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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

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Advancing the discussion on a new relationship with Canada’s Indigenous Peoples

Reconciliation ‘Canada’s most important societal issue’ says former Supreme Court Justice Frank Iacobucci

The Honourable Frank Iacobucci spoke at the Legal Studies Distinguished Visitor Lecture Series hosted by the Faculty of Social Science and Humanities (October 23, 2018).
The Honourable Frank Iacobucci spoke at the Legal Studies Distinguished Visitor Lecture Series hosted by the Faculty of Social Science and Humanities (October 23, 2018).

After an extensive career in public service that included 13 years as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, the Honourable Frank Iacobucci has a long list of accomplishments that have helped shape modern Canadian society. Actively engaged in a wide range of causes in his retirement years, Mr. Justice Iacobucci says one issue tops his list and he wants everyone to know they can help make a difference.

“The relationship with Indigenous people is the most important societal issue facing our country,” says Iacobucci, who spoke on October 23 at the university’s Legal Studies Distinguished Visitor Lecture Series. “Future relationships must be based on principles and built for the long-term.”

Iacobucci spoke to an engaged audience of Faculty of Social Science and Humanities students and researchers at the event presented and sponsored by the Carpenters Union Local 397

“Mutual respect and trust are the keys to moving forward as a country,” says Iacobucci. “Positive and encouraging steps are being taken through initiatives like the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Still, there is more to accomplish. I am hopeful the Government of Canada will join in a formal commitment to promote the economic quality of Indigenous people throughout the country.”

Since retiring from the bench in 2004, Iacobucci has offered his expertise to various provincial and federal government agencies. He has led discussions related to reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada, including framework agreements and the legacy of residential schools.

Iacobucci received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the university in June 2018.