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BCAFN Honours Indigenous Military Service and Contributions during the 26th Annual Aboriginal Veteran’s Day on November 8th

Press Release

(Lheidli T’enneh Territory, BC – Nov. 8, 2019) – BC Assembly of First Nations’ (BCAFN) honours and commends First Nations’ traditions, both past and present, of serving and contributing to Canada’s military efforts. First Nations faced and overcame many hardships and hurdles, including poverty and racism, to contribute to the protection of their lands, communities and to Canada.

“First Nations celebrate Aboriginal Veteran’s Day as an action of respect and justice as we honour and make visible the sacrifices First Nations peoples made for their lands, communities and Canada,” stated Regional Chief Terry Teegee.

Indigenous women and men must be recognized for their wartime efforts. Although women were not permitted to enlist as soldiers in the First World War, both Indigenous men and women made important contributions to this war effort, as well as the Second World War, the Korean War and the Gulf War. Many First Nations strongly supported the war efforts and worked in their communities and regions at charitable fundraising and contributed thousands of dollars during times of great need. Indigenous Canadian Armed Forces members have risked their lives defending their values of peace, freedom, and democracy in such recent missions as Canada’s engagements in Bosnia, Kosovo, Afghanistan, and other UN-led and humanitarian missions.

National Aboriginal Veterans Day began to be observed in 1994 in an effort to recognize the service and contributions of Indigenous peoples to the Canadian war efforts when Indigenous veterans were not recognized in National Remembrance Day activities.

For further information, contact:
Annette Schroeter, Communications Officer, cell phone (778)281-1655.

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