Transcript: Ontario Hubs:Indigenous Allies | Dec 13, 2019

Jeyan sits in the studio. He's is in his thirties, with short black hair and a trimmed beard. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and beige plaid tie.

A caption on screen reads "Ontario Hubs: Indigenous allies. Jeyan Jeganathan. @JeyanTVO. @theagenda."

Jeyan says EVERY TWO WEEKS FOR
THE PAST FEW MONTHS, A
REMARKABLE GATHERING OF
NON-INDIGENOUS PEOPLE AND
FACILITATORS IN OTTAWA HAS
SOUGHT TO FOSTER UNDERSTANDING
OF ISSUES FACING INDIGENOUS
PEOPLE IN CANADA.
SHELBY LISK HEADS UP OUR ONTARIO
HUB THAT COVERS INDIGENOUS
ISSUES.
SHE'S BEEN LOOKING IN ON THOSE
MEETINGS AND SHE JOINS US NOW
FROM OUR STUDIO AT CARLTON
UNIVERSITY IN THE NATION'S CAPITAL.

Shelby is in her thirties, with long straight brown hair. She's wearing glasses, a beige cardigan and a black shirt.

Jeyan continues WELCOME TO THE SHOW, SHELBY.

Shelby says HI.

Jeyan says SO THE FOCUS OF
THESE MEETINGS IS THE FINAL
REPORT OF THE NATIONAL INQUIRY
INTO THE MISSING AND MURDERED
INDIGENOUS WOMEN AND GIRLS.
THAT REPORT CAME OUT IN JUNE.
CAN YOU KIND OF GIVE US A BRIEF
OVERVIEW OF THAT?

The caption changes to "Shelby Lisk. Journalist, Indigenous Affairs."
Then, it changes again to "MMIWG Report."

Shelby says THE INQUIRY INTO MISSING AND
MURDERED INDIGENOUS WOMEN AND
GIRLS WAS ESTABLISHED BY THE
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IN 2016 IN
RESPONSE TO THE DISPROPORTIONATE
AMOUNT OF VIOLENCE FACED BY
INDIGENOUS WOMEN AND GIRLS AND
LGBTQ+2 IN CANADA.
IT'S TWO VOLUMES AND OVER 1,000
PAGES.
OVER 2,000 PEOPLE PARTICIPATED
IN THE INQUIRY THROUGH
STATEMENTS FROM FAMILIES AND
SURVIVORS AND ALSO EXPERTS AND
KNOWLEDGE-HOLDERS AND ELDERS WHO
SHARED THEIR EXPERIENCES, AND
THE FINAL REPORT OUTLINES SOME
OF THE HISTORY IN CANADA TO
CONTEXTUAL INFORMATION AS WELL
AS CALLS FOR JUSTICE AS TO WHAT
CAN BE DONE MOVING FORWARD.

Jeyan says ONE OF THE CALLS OF
JUSTICE IS TO READ AND GET TO
KNOW INDIGENOUS HISTORY.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE
READING GROUP YOU WROTE ABOUT?

The caption changes to "How to create understanding."

A screenshot from the TVO website pops up showing an article. It reads "tvo.org/OntarioHubs. Current stories. Indigenous. How this group hopes to read its way toward reconciliation. By Shelby Lisk."

Shelby says THE READING GROUP WAS STARTED
WHEN ONE OF THE BOARD MEMBERS OF
KIND SPACE POSTED ON FACEBOOK
SAYING THAT NON-INDIGENOUS
CANADIANS NEED TO BE READING
THIS REPORT AND DOING THE WORK
AS WELL, AND SO SOME OF THE
BOARD MEMBERS TOOK THIS CALL TO
ACTION, AND IN RESPONSE THAT
STARTED THIS GROUP.
AND SO THE GROUP WAS ORIGINALLY
MEANT FOR NON-INDIGENOUS
CANADIANS TO READ AND DISCUSS
THE REPORT WITH EACH OTHER TO
EDUCATE THEMSELVES.
HOWEVER, NOW SOME INDIGENOUS
PEOPLE HAVE STARTED COMING TO
THE GROUP AS WELL AND THEY HAVE
BEEN WELCOMED AND THEY HAVE BEEN
ABLE TO SHARE THEIR PERSPECTIVES
AND THEIR STORIES AS WELL.

Jeyan says WHAT'S THE HOPE FOR
OUTCOME OF THIS READING EXERCISE?

Shelby says SO FROM TALKING TO THE
FACILITATORS OF THE GROUP, THE
OUTCOME THAT THEY ARE HOPING FOR
IS JUST TO CREATE A SPACE WHERE
PEOPLE CAN TALK ABOUT THESE
ISSUES WITHOUT FEELING SHAME AND
THEN SHUTTING DOWN AND NOT
WANTING TO CONFRONT THEM.
SO THEY CAN READ THE REPORT AND
EDUCATE THEMSELVES IN HOPES THAT
CREATING THIS COMMUNITY OF
PEOPLE WHO WANT TO EDUCATE
THEMSELVES WILL LEAD TO ACTION.

Jeyan says NOW, YOU HAD
MENTIONED OFF THE TOP, THIS
REPORT SEVERAL HUNDRED PAGES
LONG.
THEY'RE NOT GOING THROUGH THIS
REPORT FAIRLY QUICKLY, I
IMAGINE.
THIS IS KIND OF A THOROUGH AND
THOUGHTFUL KIND OF PROCESS...
RIGHT?

Shelby says YEAH, YEAH.
SO THEY READ ABOUT A CHAPTER AT
A TIME WHEN THEY MEET AND THEY
STOP WHENEVER IT ORGANICALLY
FEELS RIGHT TO STOP, IF PEOPLE
HAVE QUESTIONS OR THEY NEED TO
DISCUSS AND DIGEST SOMETHING
THAT THEY JUST READ OR IF
EMOTIONS ARE COMING UP FOR
PEOPLE, THEY PAIR PEOPLE INTO
TWOS, AND SO WHEN THEY STOP
READING, THEY CAN SIT AND HAVE
SOME PAIRED LISTENING.
YOU DON'T HAVE TO TALK IN FRONT
OF THE ENTIRE GROUP, BUT YOU CAN
TALK ABOUT EMOTIONS THAT ARE
COMING UP FOR YOU WHEN YOU'RE
READING THE REPORT.

Jeyan says YOU, AS AN
INDIGENOUS PERSON YOURSELF, SAT
IN ON THIS MEETING AS WELL.
HOW DID YOU FEEL ATTENDING THIS GROUP?

Shelby says I ATTENDED THE GROUP FOR THE
FIRST TIME ABOUT A MONTH AGO.
EVERY GROUP IS DIFFERENT.
IN THE GROUP I WAS IN, WE TALKED
A LOT ABOUT LOSS.
SO WE WENT AROUND THE TABLE AND
WE TALKED ABOUT, WHAT HAD WE
LOST IN OUR LIVES, WHETHER
THAT'S LANGUAGE OR CULTURE OR
FAMILY MEMBERS, EVERYBODY HAS
LOST SOMETHING.
AT THE END OF THE GROUP I SHARED
WITH THEM THAT I FELT THAT THIS
WAS REALLY IMPORTANT THAT
NON-INDIGENOUS CANADIANS KNOW
WHERE THEY COME FROM AND THEY
KNOW THEIR OWN TRAUMA AND THEIR
OWN HISTORY, BECAUSE I THINK
THAT THAT PREPARES THEM TO BE
ABLE TO BE ALLIES TO INDIGENOUS
PEOPLE IN CANADA.
AND SO I WAS REALLY PROUD OF THE
WORK THAT THEY WERE DOING AND I
THINK THAT IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT.

The caption changes to "Producer: Carla Lucchetta, @carrletta."

Jeyan says WELL, IT'S ALWAYS A
PLEASURE TO HAVE YOU ON THE
SHOW, SHELBY.
THAT'S SHELBY LISK, OUR ONTARIO
HUB JOURNALIST WHO COVERS
INDIGENOUS ISSUES.
THANKS AGAIN.

Shelby says THANKS FOR HAVING ME.

An animated slate reads "Ontario Hubs. Ontario Hubs are made possible by The Barry and Laurie Green Family Charitable Trust and Goldie Feldman."

Watch: Ontario Hubs:Indigenous Allies