MONTREAL -- Alongside the Atikamekw Nation, the Quebec College of Physicians recognizes Joyce's Principle to curb systemic racism in the health and social services network

The Quebec College of Physicians joins its voice to those of the Conseil des Atikamekw de Manawan and the Conseil de la Nation Atikamekw, so that Joyce's Principle receives the recognition it deserves, ensuring that the tragic death of Joyce Echaquan, on September 28, 2020 at the Joliette Hospital, is not in vain.

Ms. Echaquan's fate has shocked the people of Quebec. These sad events bear witness to an evil that is still all too present in our society, that of the inequities caused by cultural barriers fuelled by prejudice that Indigenous people, and more broadly, many racialized people, suffer.

Today, our organizations are taking the "talking stick" together to name what is. We believe that the adoption of Joyce's Principle and the implementation of its recommendations should be the cornerstone of an essential shift in our society, where equity and coherence are at the center of the actions of governments, institutions, caregivers and all actors involved in health and social services.

All people, especially those in vulnerable or excluded situations, must receive the care to which they are entitled with respect and dignity, regardless of their health condition, cultural origin, beliefs, gender or living environment.

Together, let's recognize what needs to be recognized, denounce systemic racism, and take actions that will support this stance and help combat it. It is only through such actions that confidence and hope for a better future for our communities of all backgrounds can return.

Mauril Gaudreault, MD, President of the Quebec College of Physicians

Constant Awashish, Grand Chief of the Atikamekw Nation

Paul-Emile Ottawa, Chief of the Atikamekw Council of Manawan