Orange Shirt Day

September 30 is Orange Shirt Day in Canada

Orange Shirt Day logo used with permission from Orange Shirt Society

Created in 2013, Orange Shirt Day is a day for Canadians to come together to recognize our country’s residential school survivors, and those who did not survive. The day is intended to raise awareness and encourage a desire to learn about Canada’s Indian residential school system and the effect it has had on Indigenous communities for over a century; an impact that continues today. September 30 was chosen as OSD day because it was the day/time of year when Indigenous children had to leave their homes and communities to attend residential schools.

Show it by wearing it!

On September 30, Canadians can show their support – in their communities, schools and workplaces – by wearing an orange shirt (or any orange item of clothing or accessory). In addition to wearing orange in recognition of the day, Canadians are encouraged to learn more about the history of residential schools and their assimilation practices and techniques.

“Every Child Matters”

As we reflect on the vulnerable children whose lives were uprooted and forever changed by the Indian residential school system, we understand why the message of Orange Shirt Day is “Every Child Matters.”

This year, in honor of Orange Shirt Day, the AMA’s Indigenous Health Committee is seeking the support and involvement of AMA members, Board of Directors, management and staff. We hope to:

  • Create awareness of the individual, family and community inter-generational impacts of Indian Residential Schools; and
  • Inspire AMA members, Board of Directors, management and staff to initiate anti-racism/anti-bullying initiatives in the workplace.

Put on your orange and take a picture/write a caption – DEADLINE: Noon, September 29

Please ‘put on your orange’, snap a photo (of yourself, or you and your family, or you and your pet …), write a caption* and email to: by noon, September 29. Pics and captions will be posted to AMA’s social media channels.


With your photo caption (maximum 280 characters/spaces), express your support of the spirit of hope, reconciliation and education that is at the heart of Orange Shirt Day.

Orange Shirt Day resources
Watch the video featuring Phyllis Webstad, from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation, whose personal story of her new, orange shirt (taken from her on her first day at St. Joseph Residential School) was the inspiration for Orange Shirt Day.

National Center for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR)
On September 30, the National Center for Truth and Reconciliation is holding a cross-Canada live, virtual event for reconciliation, designed for students in grades 5-12.

Register in advance for the event, at which residential school survivors, elders, knowledge keepers, artists and leaders from nations and cultures across the country will share their experiences, helping Canadians to “learn, share and celebrate” as we work towards “build(ing) a better country, together!”

For more information
Welcome to Indigenous Foundations, an information resource on key topics relating to the histories, politics, and cultures of the Aboriginal peoples of Canada. This website was developed to support students in their studies, and to provide instructors, researchers and the broader public with a place to begin exploring topics that relate to Aboriginal peoples, cultures, and histories.

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