Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he is convinced a “solution” will be reached that will allow Canada to honor its war dead on Memorial Day by lowering the flag to half-staff.
Trudeau on Tuesday gave his strongest indication that the national flag could be hoisted and then lowered again at federal buildings on Remembrance Day.
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At a press conference during the climate talks in Glasgow, the Prime Minister said the government is working closely with indigenous groups to find ways to lower the flag to half-staff on 11 November.
Traditionally, the flag is lowered on Remembrance Day to pay tribute to veterans and Canada’s war dead.
The flag has been waving at half-staff at federal buildings since late May, following the location of what are believed to be hundreds of unmarked graves at a former residential school in Kamloops, BC
Trudeau has suggested that it would be up to the indigenous people to decide when to hoist it again.
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He said Tuesday that talks with indigenous leaders and communities on the issue are underway and that he is optimistic about reaching the “right solution.”
“There is an understanding of how important it is to be able to lower the flags on Remembrance Day to mark our veterans, to mark people – including indigenous peoples – who have gone up to fight for Canadian values and paid for it. ultimate sacrifice, “he said.
“I am convinced that the talks with the original management to ensure that we lower the flag again on 11 November will come to the right solution.”
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RoseAnne Archibald, the national head of the Assembly of First Nations, will meet with the organization’s leader this week to discuss its position, her spokeswoman said.
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs, said residential school survivors should play a key role in deciding whether or not to hoist the flag.
“We need to respect the housing movement’s survival movement,” he said. “Whatever consensus they reach should be respected.”
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Lynne Groulx, executive director of the Native Women’s Association of Canada, said: “We need to respect the veterans, many of whom were natives. We need to find a way to honor them properly on Memorial Day with traditional flag-related ceremonies. But there needs to be a solution where the children who perished in the primary schools are also honored and respected. ”
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The Royal Canadian Legion has said it plans to hoist the flag and then lower it at the National War Memorial in Ottawa on November 11th. The Legion is responsible for what happens at the Remembrance Day Memorial.
It has recommended that Legion branches also hoist and lower the flag at worship services at cenotaphs across the country.
A two-minute silence at 11 a.m. on November 11 _ which marks the time and date of the ceasefire at the end of World War I _ will accompany the lowering of the flag, along with the laying of wreaths and the Last Post bugle call.
Spectators, wearing masks and from a distance, will be able to attend the ceremony in Ottawa.
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