We recognize that our work takes place on traditional Indigenous territories across Canada. We also wish to acknowledge that Diabetes Canada’s head office is located on the traditional Indigenous territory of the Wendat, Haudenosaunee, Anishinaabeg, and the Mississaugas of the Credit.
Mis-i-SAU-guh (Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation)
This territory is part of the Dish with One Spoon Treaty, an agreement between the Anishinaabeg, Haudenosaunee and allied nations to peaceably share and care for the resources around the Great Lakes. This territory is also covered by the Upper Canada Treaties. The city of Toronto is located within the boundaries of the Toronto Purchase Treaty lands, specifically, Treaty 13 signed with the Mississaugas of the Credit, and the Williams Treaties signed with multiple Mississaugas and Chippewa bands.
Today, Toronto (Tkaronto) is still home to many Indigenous people, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to meet and work on this territory.
We wish to express gratitude for the resources on this land we are using, and honour all the First Nation, Métis, and Inuit people who have been living on the land since time immemorial.
Diabetes Canada knows that land acknowledgement is only a first step in the essential act of reconciliation and relationship building with Indigenous peoples.
Diabetes Canada recognizes that all settlers, including recent arrivants, have a responsibility to consider what it means to acknowledge the history and legacy of colonialism. Canada’s history of colonialism, including the Residential School System, has created health inequities such as a higher burden of diabetes and other chronic illness, food insecurity, and mental health crises amongst First Nation, Métis, and Inuit people. We are actively striving to understand the intergenerational trauma experienced by our Indigenous neighbours from coast to coast to coast. We recognize the need to support Indigenous leaders and communities focused on improving health outcomes for Indigenous peoples with diabetes, by supporting an Indigenous-designed and -led diabetes strategy.
To demonstrate our ongoing commitment to reconciliation, we have undertaken organizational actions, including the following:
We consulted with the Indigenous Community about the steps we could take in the short term to be more responsive to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) calls to action.
We established a Working Group on the Inclusion of Indigenous Peoples for the Diabetes 360° initiative to reduce the inequitable impact of diabetes on Indigenous communities. The group advised that this framework may serve as a starting point from which to build an Indigenous owned, led, and implemented diabetes strategy that speaks to the unique needs of Indigenous Peoples in Canada.
We continue to include articles in our publications to address some of the challenges faced by Indigenous Peoples living with diabetes, highlight diabetes initiatives in Canada, and educate diabetes health-care providers on the importance of acknowledging and incorporating Indigenous culture into health care.
We are working to include the perspective of Indigenous Peoples in our conferences.
We have worked with Indigenous leaders to created culturally appropriate resources for Indigenous communities. Specific resources can be found here.
We promote work done by Indigenous organizations, including the Indigenous Diabetes Health Circle and the National Indigenous Diabetes Association (NIDA).
We continually commit to being inclusive of Indigenous Peoples in our engagement during Mission activities and as an employer.
We recognize that reconciliation is a process rather than an act, and in addition to the steps we take to work with Indigenous Peoples to support their work to reduce the impact of diabetes, we also commit to amplifying Indigenous voices and advocating for greater supports and agency for Indigenous peoples, especially those living with and impacted by diabetes. Our work in this area continues.