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Chilean Lower House Approves Indigenous Peoples Public Holiday

Source: Ministerio del Trabajo y Previsión Social (Valparaiso)
Posted: Wednesday, May 26, 2021
Most recent follow-up news item: June 17, 2021

Chile's Chamber of Deputies has approved the bill that would declare a new annual public holiday in Chile, to commemorate the National Day of Indigenous Peoples, on the Monday closest to June 24.

Almost 15 years ago, a bill had been introduced in Chile's legislative assembly to make June 24, the indigenous Mapuche New Year, a public holiday throughout Chile (2007-07-06).

That proposal was then morphed into the replacement of the annual Día de la Raza public holiday of Chile, into a June 24 public holiday to coincide with the Mapuche Indian new year (We Tripantu) and to be called the "Día de los Pueblos Originarios" (2007-12-12 and 2009-10-08).

The topic came back to the fore a couple of years ago (2019-06-24), and a bill which would declare June 21 as a new annual non-working public holiday celebrating Chile's native people ("proyecto de ley para declarar feriado el 21 de junio de cada año como el Día Nacional de los Pueblos Indígenas") was tabled, a couple of months later (2019-09-04). But, the bill was not approved within that legislative session, thus making it void.

A year later, Chile's President, Sebastián Piñera, announced that he would soon introduce legislation to make Indigenous New Year (We Tripantu), on June 24, a new annual public holiday in Chile (2020-11-10).

As per the version of the bill passed by the Chilean Lower House, the new annual We Tripantu public holiday of Chile, on June 24, would replace the current Encounter of Two Worlds public holiday, on October 12, rather than the June 29 Saint Peter and Saint Paul Day, as initially set out in the bill, and would be moved to the Monday closest to June 24.

This would further amend the list of bank holidays and non-working public holidays in Chile for the calendar year 2022, as announced last autumn (2020-10-31), and possibly even the list of 2021 public holidays in Chile, if the legislative process is accelerated (2019-10-04).

Links and References

Below are links to the news stories referred to in the above "Chilean Lower House Approves Indigenous Peoples Public Holiday" news story, as well as links to subsequents news stories which refer to the present news story.