The Pilgrimage for Indigenous Rights began with a 600 km walk from Kitchener to Ottawa in support of the adoption and implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Comprised mostly of Christians, our hope was to embody a tangible response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, specifically Call #48 which summons all churches to learn about the Declaration, facilitate public dialogue around it, and embrace its minimum standards.

The first part of the Pilgrimage is done. But the Pilgrimage is far from over. Walkers and church communities continue to raise awareness of the Declaration and mobilize on behalf of Bill C-262 (a private members bill that would ensure that the laws of Canada are in harmony with the Declaration).

We invite you to join in the movement:

The Pilgrimage Planning Team

Chuck Wright, Erin Froese, Kathy Moorhead Thiessen, Steve Heinrichs

Waiting & Praying: Will 262 get to Committee in time?

We need your help friends.

Bill C-262, The Indigenous Rights Act, needs to get into Committee soon or there just won’t be enough time—it will die on the order paper before getting to 3rd reading/vote. We thought the Senate was going to refer 262 to Committee on April 21st, but Conservative Senators filibustered and prevented such (see Obstructing UNDRIP bill amounts to oppression and racism).

Our next big opportunity is Tuesday, April 30th. Please encourage the Senate to pursue reconciliation by supporting Bill C-262 and the minimum standards set forth in the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Go on Twitter and Facebook and share your support for 262. Use the attached graphic and tag the Senate and key political leaders – @SenateCA, @andrewscheer, @donplett.

It’s time for Canada to have a plan for respecting the rights of Indigenous peoples.
Canadians are waiting.
Together, let’s #passBillC262!

Fast for 262 on March 6, 2019: A Day of Prayer and Fasting for Bill C-262

Join us on March 6, 2019 for Fast 262, a Day of Prayer and Fasting for Bill C-262: The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Bill C-262 needs to get to the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples soon or there won’t be enough time for it to achieve royal assent. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission calls Canada to adopt and implement the Declaration as “the framework for reconciliation” (Call to Action #43). We need your help. Would you join us in prayer and fasting as we ask the Creator to move hearts and minds? Participate by signing up on our Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/events/2010565912312619). Let friends know that you are fasting on March 6 by posting a selfie with the hashtags #fastfor262 #passbillC262 #SenCA on your page or on the Fast for 262 Facebook page.

Posters for printing are available for download here.

Senators receive ecumenical letter

This week, Senators serving in the Upper House of Canada’s Parliament, will receive an ecumenical letter encouraging them to support Bill C-262 (The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act). Drafted and signed by leaders of various faith-based organizations—including the Canadian Baptists of Western Canada, the Quakers, the Anglican Church of Canada, Mennonite Central Committee and more—the letter urges the Senate to “make a non-partisan decision in support of legislative reconciliation.” Please pray for the Senate as they discern how Canada can move closer to honest and fair relationship with Indigenous peoples.

We’re in the Home Stretch – Time to Write the Senate!

Through the amazing work of grassroots advocacy, Bill C-262—The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act—got through the House of Commons and now sits in the Senate. We need the Senate to pass 262 by June 2019, and so we need you (and everyone in your precious circle!) to write our Senators, calling on them to “Walk the Talk” and “PASS 262.” This bill, affirming the application of the Declaration in Canadian law, is the most important piece of legislation to come before the Senate. It will make a huge difference!

-Send an electronic letter—crafted by a coalition of faith-based organizations—to all the Senators at this link and spread the word (it only takes a minute)

– Order a free pack of postcards to send to all the Senators. Postage is free and the cards come with a tips sheet so you can pull off a postcard party with your community or church group. (Handwritten cards with short messages really do have an impact).


It’s not over yet!

Friends and Supporters,

Bill C-262 will ensure that the principles and minimum standards of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples are affirmed and implemented in Canadian law. The second hour of debate on Bill C-262 takes place on February 5th and voting on the bill will happen on February 7, 2018. We must keep the pressure on and make sure all MPs vote for Bill C-262.

This week we are running a massive email lobbying effort. We need you to take part in two important ways:

  1. Watch the talk on February 05 by live-streaming the debate at http://www.cpac.ca/en/ after 11 AM EST, AND let them know you are watching
    – tag your MP on twitter or Facebook and use these hashtags: #passBillC262 #UNDRIP #indigenousrights
  2. Send an email TODAY to your local MP and”cc” the Minister of Justice, Jody Wilson-Raybould, encouraging them to stand up for justice by voting for Bill C-262 on February 7th.

Thank you for your continued support.

See the e-mail template and instructions:  MPs Email Instructions

Breaking News: Government Publicly Commits to Bill C-262

Minister of Justice Jody Wilson-Raybould has announced that the Government of Canada is supporting Bill C-262, An Act to Ensure that the Laws of Canada are in Harmony with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. “With the direction and leadership of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, our government will support Bill C-262. The Bill acknowledges the application of the UN Declaration in Canada, and calls for the alignment of the laws of Canada with the UN Declaration.”

This is incredibly encouraging… but until the actual vote happens and the Government stands in the House of Commons in support of 262, we need to continue lifting up prayers, sending postcards and meeting with MPs, applying persistent loving pressure! Together, we can do this.


Chants and busy feet declare support for Bill C-262

On Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, about 160 Indigenous and settler folk joined together to raise awareness and support for Bill C-262, a bill that seeks to ensure the laws of Canada are in harmony with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). Television (CBC, CTV, and Global) and the Winnipeg Sun covered the 12 km walk from Stephen Juba Park in downtown Winnipeg to the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation on the campus of the University of Manitoba.

Below is a short video summarizing the event.

Bill C-262: Breaking Update – Updated

Bill C-262 will be debated in Parliament following its second reading on December 5, 2017. Bill C-262 is a private member’s bill put forward by MP Romeo Saganash. It seeks to harmonize Canadian law with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

That leaves just over one month to continue raising awareness, participating in actions such as Walk the Talk (Sept. 23), Sign the Petition  and the Rolling Fast (beginning Sept. 13), and setting up meetings with your elected representatives.

Please share this information on your social media channels and use #PassC262.