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2022 Virtual National Conference of the Catholic Health Alliance of Canada

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Date & Time
12 May 2022, 10 h 30 min - 13 May 2022, 16 h 30 min



Looking Within: Creating Culturally Safe
Environments of Care for Indigenous Peoples

hosted by St. Joseph’s Care Group in Thunder Bay,
on the traditional territory of the Fort William First Nation



Catholic health care is committed to a healing journey and learning the truth about our history with Indigenous Peoples. We are working towards fostering relationships built on the truths of colonialism and oppression, learning from the past, understanding the importance of Indigenous People’s right to self-determination in their own healing, and rebuilding trust to work towards developing healthier relationships.

The conference will showcase Indigenous speakers that will help us better understand the truth and highlight wise practices and innovative programs. It has never been more important for Catholic health organizations across this land we call Canada to embrace diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.

The conference aims to inspire action and equip leaders and organizations with insights and tools to support their efforts to ensure a culturally safe environment for all.

The Conference organizers are currently confirming an exciting array of keynote speakers and leaders. There will be opportunities for group discussions and learning.

Further details including registration information will be provided early in 2022.

Speakers and Panelists

  • Kahontakwas Diane Longboat BA, BEd, MEd
    Kahontakwas Diane Longboat is an Elder from Mohawk Nation, Turtle Clan, a traditional teacher from Six Nations Grand River Territory, and a ceremonial leader, and healer.
  • Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair, PhD
    Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair is an Anishinaabe academic and writer, activist and public speaker on Indigenous issues, and Head of the Department of Native Studies at the University of Manitoba.
  • L James Dempsey, PhD
    L James Dempsey is a member of the Blood Indian Tribe of southern Alberta and Associate Professor of the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta.
  • Harmony Johnson BA, MHA
    Harmony Johnson is of Tla’amin First Nation (Coast Salish) ancestry and Interim Vice-President of Indigenous Wellness and Reconciliation at Providence Health Care, Vancouver.
  • Lisa Raven
    Lisa Raven is from the Hollow Water First Nation in Manitoba, and Executive Director of Returning to Spirit, an organization that delivers experiential reconciliation workshops.
  • Dr. James Makokis
    Dr. James Makokis is a Cree Two-Spirit physician from Saddle Lake First Nation in Northern, Alberta. A national and internationally recognized leader and author in the area of Indigenous health and transgender health.
  • Dr. Cynthia Wesley-Esquimaux
    First Indigenous Chair for Truth and Reconciliation in Canada for Lakehead University and Chair of the Governing Circle for the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba.
  • Paul Francis Jr.
    Born and raised in Thunder Bay, with roots in Mnidoo Mnising (Manitoulin Island) and a member of Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory, Paul is the Director of Indigenous Relations at St. Joseph’s Care Group in Thunder Bay, Ontario.


May 12, 2021 ~ 10:30 – 16:30 EST

  • More details to come

May 13, 2021 ~ 10:30 – 16:30 EST

  • More details to come






Fees: $295 (Single Registrant) or $1000 (Five registrants employed by the same organization)



Virtual via Zoom Thursday, May 12, 2021 & Friday, May 13, 2021 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time).

For updates about the conference go to www.accs.ca or contact Cheryl Spencer, Administrative and Events Coordinator, e-mail: Cheryl.spencer@chac.ca