History of National Indigenous Peoples Month
June is National Indigenous History Month. Celebrated annually on June 21, National Indigenous Peoples Day is a time for all Canadians to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. The Canadian Constitution recognizes these three groups as Aboriginal peoples, also known as Indigenous peoples.
What is National Indigenous Peoples Day?
June 21 was chosen for National Indigenous Peoples Day (formally known as National Aboriginal Day) as it falls on the summer solstice. This day is significant to many Indigenous peoples, who traditionally celebrated their culture and heritage during summer solstice, the longest day of the year.
In 1996, National Aboriginal Day was announced by then-Governor General of Canada, Roméo LeBlanc, through the Proclamation Declaring June 21 of Each Year as National Aboriginal Day. This was the result of consultations and statements of support for such a day made by various Indigenous groups.
On June 21, 2017, the day was officially renamed National Indigenous Peoples Day.