On this National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) is reflecting on the harm that colonization has caused for generations of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples. It is a reminder of the important work that lies ahead as we walk a path of truth and reconciliation in partnership with Indigenous Peoples.
Earlier this year, the CMA took two key steps in this journey. Led by the Guiding Circle, a group of 16 Indigenous leaders and knowledge-keepers, the CMA now has a long-term Indigenous health goal to guide the organization’s work in eliminating anti-Indigenous racism and in creating a more equitable health system for First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples. As the national voice of physicians, we also announced our commitment to an apology for the harms caused to Indigenous Peoples.
These steps are just the beginning of what we intend to be an honest, critical discussion of where we are today, how we got here, and how we can carve a path forward together.
Today, I am pleased to announce that the CMA has convened a second Guiding Circle that will identify initiatives to help us meet the aspirations of the Indigenous health goal and provide an important lens on the CMA’s efforts to advocate for a more accessible and equitable health system.
It is our sincere hope that by walking this path with Indigenous Peoples, we can create a better, more inclusive health system.
Please join us in reflecting on National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
Dr. Kathleen Ross