Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is attending the UN General Assembly in New York this week.
In his opening statements he made a bold move to say Canada is not as perfect as some people think. We took a wrong turn a long time ago and now it is time to fix it.
This years theme is People: Striving for Peace and a Decent Life for All on a Sustainable Planet. Trudeau talked about how equity for everyone everywhere is a priority for Canadians, but he didn’t forget to mention our colonial past and challenges stating “Canada is not a wonderland” and that we are continuing to be a work in progress.
Trudeau says our issues aren’t unique, nor their solutions. He went on to elaborate although Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday it is far older than that and was home to people for thousands of years. It is built on ancestral land, and became a country that didn’t utilize the ‘meaningful participation’ of our First Nations.
His speech elaborated the First Nations were not respected by their government and they were victims. Their government undermined their rights and dignity, that tried to rewrite their history and imposed colonial life on them. One that didn’t protect them, their land, their waters, cultures or traditions.
Many are criticizing Trudeau for not talking about more global issues happening, like the displacement and genocide of Myanmar or the starvation and poverty in Venezuela, instead Trudeau talked about an issue affecting somewhere close to home. Others are praising Trudeau, saying that he is leading by example and promote his new government’s re-engagement with the UN and reconciliation with it’s First Nations.
Canada is currently lobbying to be part of the UN Security Council and is promoting themes of togetherness and inclusive. Canada was recently voted Most Influential Country by a global marketing survey conducted by ISPOS.
His full speech is here: