Program & Level: Arts & Science III
Growing up as an immigrant and settler in Canada, I found that the voices and stories of this land’s Indigenous peoples were frustratingly missing from classroom discussions and the overall education system. Though I had always been interested in the healthcare field, I was unaware of the many health inequities faced by Indigenous peoples. I joined IHM to learn, and help others learn, about contemporary Indigenous health issues and medicine from a non-Western perspective. This year, I am excited to explore the theme of climate change and hear of the incredible work that Indigenous activists have long been doing to preserve our planet. I believe any successful environmental movement will have to center Indigenous voices and perspectives on environmental health; the best way to protect our environment is to uphold the sovereignty of the original stewards of the land. This year’s conference will serve as an important reminder of the interconnectedness of our world and how any harm to the environment can manifest in harm to Indigenous communities. This is why it is so important to advocate alongside Indigenous communities for a more equitable, accessible, and holistic approach to health and environment.