Yesterday was Orange Shirt Day - a day to honour and remember residential school survivors and their families as well as children who did not come home.
Yesterday was also the first National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, a day on which we recognize and reflect on the intergenerational harm that residential schools caused to Indigenous families and communities, and honour those impacted. Our government remains committed to working with our Indigenous partners to address this dark legacy. Today is a call for us to honour survivors, their families and communities, and ensure that we continue to work together to promote reconciliation and healing.
We all have a role to play in building a more inclusive Ontario and we must continue to work together to eliminate hate, racism, and discrimination in all its forms.
In light of National Truth and Reconciliation Day, the Ontario government will ensure that First Nation, Métis and Inuit perspectives are reflected throughout the province’s curriculum. Currently, the province’s curriculum includes mandatory [Indigenous learning] in Social Studies, Grades 4-6, and History in Grades 7, 8, and 10, including mandatory learning on residential schools in Grades 8 and 10, introduced in 2018. The Ministry of Education announced a commitment to complete the full spectrum of learning across this elementary curriculum, addressing the current gap in Grades 1 and 3 by September 2023. This timeline and the curriculum development process is being co-developed with Indigenous partners to reflect meaningful collaboration while recognizing the urgency of this content in learning.
Ministers Lecce and Rickford outlined Ontario’s education plan to strengthen Indigenous learning through a meaningful co-development process with Indigenous partners, Elders and Knowledge Holders, including:
Mandatory Indigenous-focused learning added to the Social Studies, Grades 1-3 curriculum, including exploring opportunities for new learning on:
The role of family and resilience in First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities and nations
First Nations, Métis and Inuit historical and contemporary realities
Indigenous peoples’ interrelationship and connection with the land
The residential school system and the reclamation and revitalization of identity, language, culture and community connections.
Out of an abundance of caution, Ontario is issuing a preferential recommendation of the use of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for individuals aged 18-24 years old effective immediately based on the current available analysis from Ontario’s adverse events following immunization (AEFI) surveillance system.
This recommendation was based on the advice of Ontario’s Children COVID-19 Vaccine Table, Ontario Vaccine Clinical Advisory Group, and Public Health Ontario and is due to an observed increase in Ontario of the very rare heart condition called pericarditis/myocarditis following vaccination with Moderna compared to Pfizer in the 18 to 24 year old age group, particularly among males. The majority of reported cases have been mild with individuals recovering quickly, normally with anti-inflammatory medication. Symptoms have typically been reported to start within one week after vaccination, more commonly after the second dose.
This decision is also based on the increased and reliable supply of the Pfizer vaccines and the fact that individuals who received Moderna for their first dose can safely take the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for their second dose. Mixing vaccines is safe and effective, and full vaccination with two doses of the mRNA vaccine offers the greatest protection you can have against COVID-19 and the Delta variant.
As Ontario continues to respond to the fourth wave driven by the highly transmissible Delta variant, we encourage all eligible Ontarians to sign up to receive their first and second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine today.”
Queen's Park returns for its second session this upcoming Monday. Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, will deliver a Speech from the Throne when the legislature convenes on October 4, 2021 at 9:00 a.m.
My constituency office is open Monday to Friday from 10AM to 4PM. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to drop by. We encourage you to continue to contact us at (416) 781-2395 or email [email protected]. We remain ready to assist.