Ontario observes an annual Treaties Recognition Week the first week in November. This is a time for all Canadians to learn about the importance of the treaties and treaty relationships that shape Ontario.

Ontario as we know it today exists because of treaties – they underpin the places where we live, work and learn. The Treaties are legal agreements signed more than a century ago that form the basis of the relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. 

While you may have heard the expression, “We are all treaty people” you may wonder what it means. First Nations people are the original occupants of the land now called Canada. They signed the Treaties in good faith as independent, self-governing nations with the expectation that the government would fulfill the promises they made to share the rich natural resources.

Unfortunately the government failed to act as a mutually respectful partner. Instead, the government targeted Indigenous peoples using colonial policies designed to exploit, assimilate and eradicate them. 

The Ontario government is currently working to rebuild its fractured relationship with Indigenous peoples and to educate all Ontarians about the value the treaties hold.


Links to learn more:


Related books in our collection:


Futher resources to learn more about Treaties Recognition Week: 

  • Treaties Recognition Week (Ontario Ministry of Indigenous Affairs) - Resources to support learning about treaties, treaty relationships, and treaty rights that shape Ontario.