Air Canada held a special event at its Montreal headquarters alongside Indigenous community members to unveil an Indigenous Commitment Plaque. Permanently and prominently installed at the airline’s headquarters in Montreal, it represents the airline’s commitment to truth and reconciliation. A Montreal land acknowledgement plaque is being showcased prominently at the airline’s downtown office location acknowledging that this office is located on the traditional lands of the Kanien'kehà:ka (Mohawk) Nation situated within the Tiohtià:ke.
The event was attended by Kahnawà:ke Nation community leaders who are also Members of the Haudenosaunee External Relations Committee, Joe Deom and Kenneth Deer, Traveling Spirit Drum, who performed a ceremonial drumming, Air Canada’s indigenous consultant, Tarra Wright Many-Chief, senior Air Canada executives, and Air Canada employees. During the event, Mr. Deom performed a welcome and Mr. Deer highlighted aspects of the Kanien'kehà:ka culture and territories for the audience of Air Canada Employees.
Speaking at the event, Christianna Scott, Director, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Air Canada, introduced the airline’s commitment alongside Michael Rousseau, President and CEO of Air Canada.
“As Canada’s largest airline and the country’s flag carrier, we at Air Canada have a responsibility to support Indigenous inclusion internally and externally. We have started to engage in dialogue with Indigenous community members, at key locations where we fly across Canada. We are discussing community priorities and exploring ways in which as a company, we can meaningfully apply and deliver the corporate recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada,” said Christianna, at the ceremony.
The plaque includes artwork from Star ‘Otsisto’ Horn, an accomplished Indigenous artist from the Kahnawà:ke nation, signifying that the combination of wisdom and ideas can create strong communities with the ability to fly together and be protected by that strength.
“We have purposefully installed this commitment in a high-traffic area where it can get the recognition it deserves. This is a significant step in our journey to strengthen partnerships with Indigenous communities where Air Canada flies,” Ms. Scott concluded.
Air Canada also acknowledges Indigenous peoples’ ancestral and traditional lands it flies over in its on-board pre-flight safety video.