94 Calls to Action: Truth & Reconciliation

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) was created in 2008 to acknowledge and attend to the deep harm done to Indigenous people through the Indian Residential School system.

Indian residential schools were designed to "take the Indian out of the child," in the words of Prime Minister Sir John A. MacDonald. Children as young as four were forced to attend the schools, which were paid for by the Canadian government and run by Christian churches. The students who attended these institutions were terribly abused. Although many records are incomplete and inaccessible, it is estimated that between 4,100 and 6,500 Indigenous children died while attending Indian residential schools. The last school closed in 1996. 

In 2015, the TRC published a summary of its final report, Honouring the Truth, Reconciling for the Future, opens a new window. Included in this report are 94 Calls to Action, opens a new window. Inspired by the stories painfully shared by more than 6, 000 Survivors, the 94 Calls to Action represents an act of openheartedness and generosity offered to the people of Canada. In this short document, a comprehensive plan is presented for accepting responsibility and seeking forgiveness in a spirit of reconciliation. Library copies are available for borrowing at the link above.

In the six years since, progress on the 94 Calls to Action has been mixed. As of October 2021, according to the CBC's Beyond 94 website, opens a new window, only 13 Calls to Action have been completed. It is important that Canadians honour the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission by learning from and acting on all of these recommendations.

Halifax Public Libraries' delivery on Truth and Reconciliation

Beginning in January of 2022, Halifax Public Libraries will launch a year-long, system-wide (re)examination of the TRC's 94 Calls to Action. To increase access to this report and to promote its message, the Library will present each of the 94 Calls to Action on the media screens installed in Library branches and on its social media accounts. In those branches which do not have screens, small posters will soon be available to promote branch displays of relevant Library material. The full 94 Calls to Action document can also be printed on-demand in any of our 14 branches at no cost.

We encourage everyone to engage with this important document, the history it records, and to reflect on the responsibility we each have to advance the cause of reconciliation.

Ongoing Calls to Action Sharing 

These slides are playing on Library digital TV screens throughout 2022. 

Library resources

Community resources


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