Reconciliation the focus of panel discussion at Thunder Bay's Brodie library
Max FineDay hosting conversation about what reconciliation will look like in Thunder Bay
The leader of one of Canada's largest Indigenous-led charities hopes his visit to Thunder Bay, Ont., will allow him to amplify the voices of those passionate about reconciliation.
Max FineDay, executive director of Canadian Roots Exchange, will be holding a panel discussion in the city on Wednedsay to talk about reconciliation, how young Indigenous people can become leaders in an environment like Thunder Bay, and how Indigenous youth can support each other when faced with racism and sexism.
"I've the pleasure of visiting this beautiful city many times before, this beautiful territory, I know that it's filled with people who ... love their families, who care about their community, who want to see their children succeed," FineDay said.
"These are the things we have in common as Indigenous and non-Indigenous people."
"Does Thunder Bay suffer from that same sickness that the rest of the country is also suffering from, that case of colonialism? Absolutely it does."
FineDay said his panel discussion aims to continue the dialogue, but also to ask what reconciliation will look like in Thunder Bay.
"It's going to look different than reconciliation in Toronto or Vancouver or Halifax, and what's that really localized context?" he said. "That's what I hope young people and citizens in Thunder Bay are excited about talking about, and that's why I hope they show up to this event."
FineDay said reconciliation is not the job of Indigenous people.
"We have done nothing wrong," he said. "It's the job of Canada to say 'we apologize for what's happened in our past, this injustice. We're not maybe the country that we thought we were of human rights and equality, all these sorts of things, but we can be.'"
He said Canadian Roots Exchange research shows that 75 per cent of Indigenous young people, and 68 per cent of non-Indigenous young people, believe reconciliation is achievable in their lifetimes.
In Conversation with Max FineDay takes place Wednesday Sept. 18 at 6 p.m at the Brodie Resource Library.