UNA marks National Indigenous People’s Day 

Today is National Indigenous People’s Day and United Nurses of Alberta honours the contribution of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples to our union, our province and Canada.

UNA is proud to represent many nurses of Indigenous heritage, including those employed by the Blood Tribe Department of Health in Stand Off, near Cardston, and by Aakom Kiyii Health Services of the Piikani Nation, at Brocket.

In co-operation with Indigenous organizations, the Government of Canada chose June 21, the summer solstice, for National Aboriginal Day, now known as National Indigenous Peoples Day. For generations, many Indigenous peoples and communities celebrated their culture and heritage on or near this day because of the significance of the summer solstice as the longest day of the year.

UNA members are encouraged to take part in National Indigenous People’s Day events held in communities across Alberta.

National Aboriginal Day was proclaimed by then governor general Romeo Leblanc in 1996 and was renamed National Indigenous Peoples Day in 2017.

The Canadian Constitution recognizes three distinct groups of Indigenous peoples with unique histories, languages, cultural practices and spiritual beliefs: First Nations (still referred to in federal legislation as Indians), Inuit, and Métis. 

National Indigenous Peoples Day provides an opportunity for all Canadians to learn more about Indigenous people and show their respect for their vast contribution to Canada.

National Indigenous People’s Day is a statutory holiday in Yukon and the Northwest Territories. It is an observance in Nunavut and the 10 provinces.