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Charlottetown Forum

Listening, learning, and finding our way together.

The Charlottetown Forum is a newly established event that brings together artists, leaders, and the public to convene for discussions on matters of importance to Canadians.

Meeting at Confederation Centre of the Arts next to the site of the 1864 Charlottetown Conference, the Charlottetown Forum seeks to promote open learning and sharing of diverse perspectives about the evolving identity of Canada.

The Forum is part of the Centre’s wider revitalization plan, which includes the creation of a National Cultural Leadership Institute housing new spaces for the creation of art, cultural learning, and public discourse.

The inaugural Charlottetown Forum took place November 9-10, 2023 and featured three panels and post-panel discussions on the topics of immigration, economic reconciliation, and finding shared national narratives in a fractured time. Alongside the panels were networking opportunities with speakers, a thematic exploration of the Confederation Centre Art Gallery, and a walk and talk through downtown Charlottetown from both an Indigenous and colonial perspective. 

A LOOK BACK AT THE 2023 CHARLOTTETOWN FORUM

Panel #1

NEWCOMERS, IMMIGRATION, AND THE NEEDS OF A RAPIDLY CHANGING NATIONAL COMMUNITY

Canada consistently ranks as one of the most desirable destinations for immigrants and refugees from around the world, and our federal immigration policy includes 500,000 newcomers arriving by 2025.

This rapid shift in immigration creates swift demographic change, opportunity, and increased diversity, but newcomers face challenges like lack of housing and affordability. This panel dives into Canada’s immigration systems, the challenges faced by newcomers, and what belonging and integration looks like in a rapidly changing nation.

Speakers

Elamin Abdelmahmoud

Journalist and author

Nicholas Keung

Immigration Reporter, Toronto Star

Shamira Madhany

Managing and Deputy Director, WES

Taleeb Noormohamed

Member of Parliament, Vancouver Granville
Panel #2

ECONOMIC RECONCILIATION

Eight years after the 2015 final report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the continued economic disparity between Indigenous and non-Indigenous prosperity continues to persist. Economic reconciliation refers to the economic redress of historical injustices to Indigenous peoples, and this panel will discuss the growing field focused on increasing intergenerational wealth creation and prosperity in Indigenous communities.

Speakers

Harvey McCue (Waubageshig)

Anishinabe, Georgina Island First Nation

Consultant specializing in Indigienous issues

Jonathan Davey

Haudenosaunee, Lower Cayuga First Nation, Six Nations of the Grand River / non-Indigenous descent

Vice President of Indigenous Financial Services, Scotiabank

Kateri Coade

Abegweit First Nation

Executive Director, Mi’kmaq Confederacy of P.E.I.

Keith Martell

Waterhen Lake First Nation

Former CEO, First Nations Bank of Canada

Panel #3

SHARED NATIONAL NARRATIVES IN A FRACTURED TIME

In a quickly changing global landscape, including rising populism, the war in Ukraine, and a domestic landscape seeking recovery post-pandemic, Canada is negotiating its own story both at home and on the world stage. What is our collective identity, if any, and whose stories do we tell? In a moment of changing dominant narratives, new policies that legislate Canadian content, rebranding as a clean energy leader, and shifting foreign policy, we delve into our national narratives and what they may look like going forward.

Speakers

Devyani Saltzman

Writer, curator, and arts leader

Naheed Nenshi

Political commentator and former mayor of Calgary

Tanya Talaga

Journalist and author

Jesse Wente

Journalist, author, and chair of the board of the Canada Council for the Arts

Learn more about Heritage Programming

Contact Francesca Perez, Director of Arts Education and Heritage
902-629-1178 or [email protected]