Orange Shirt Day: The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Is A Holiday In Orillia

By John Swartz

City Hall and other municipal facilities are closed Friday for the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation statutory holiday. As well Orillia OPP will be closing West Street from Brant to Mississaga Saturday between 1 and 1:30 p.m. for a National Day For Truth and Reconciliation Walk (starting at the Opera House) organized by the Orillia Native Women’s Group, Biminaawzogin Transitional Housing and  and Mamaway Wiidokdaadwin.

This is a new statutory holiday adopted by council in August. If September 30 falls on a Saturday the observance moves backward one day, and if it’s a Sunday it moves ahead to Monday.

In addition to City Hall these other facilities and services will be closed:

  • Wastewater Treatment Centre (40 Kitchener St.)
  • Waste Diversion Site
  • Municipal Operations Centre (20 James St. W.)
  • Water Filtration Plant
  • Orillia Recreation Centre
  • Brian Orser Arena
  • Rotary Place
  • Barnfield Point Recreation Centre. (Bayside Restaurant will be open with regular business hours).

The Opera House, Orillia Public Library and Leacock Museum will be closed Saturday.

Orillia Transit will operate as normal. Friday’s curbside recycling and green bin/yard waste collection will still be Friday this year.

The Orillia Farmers’ Market will operate Saturday as normal.

Flags will be lowered to half-mast beginning Sept. 29, 2023, and will remain lowered throughout the weekend to commemorate the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. The Waterfront Centre at the Port of Orillia will be lit in orange.

The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation was proclaimed in 2021 by the Government of Canada as a result of Orange Shirt Day observed in Native communities since 2013, which grew out of the revelations of residential school system. All federal employees and businesses operating under federal charter observe the holiday. Only employees of the provinces of Manitoba and Nova Scotia observe the statutory holiday. In B.C., PEI, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Yukon it is recognized as a holiday for all like any other. For more information about the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and the Commission’s 94 calls to action, visit the Government of Canada’s National Day for Truth and Reconciliation webpage.

(Image Supplied)

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