FREDERICTON (GNB) – The following message was issued by Premier Blaine Higgs to mark New Brunswick Day, Monday, Aug. 2:

The past 17 months have been challenging for all New Brunswickers, as we adjusted our lives to follow new Public Health guidelines, doing whatever was required to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Everyone has a story of how this pandemic impacted them. Some of those stories are tragic, as we lost 46 New Brunswickers to COVID-19 or complications arising from contracting the virus. I want to offer my condolences to all the families who have lost loved ones.

At the same time, the discovery of unmarked graves across our country and the innocent lives lost have us all examining our past and recommitting to a more just future. We must do better.

This New Brunswick Day is like no other. It offers an opportunity to celebrate our move to Green and all that we have achieved as a province to get us to this point.

The pandemic has taught us that when we work together we can achieve anything we put our minds to. We not only rose to the challenge, we often led the way through the pandemic and the first stages of recovery.

New Brunswickers showed the rest of Canada that they are resilient, hardworking and invested in the well-being of their loved ones and communities – and Canada took notice. We have gone from being a have-not province to a province that has it all. There is a renewed interest in our province as a place to live and do business, and that is thanks to you.

While it is wonderful that the rest of the country is seeing us in a new light, what’s even more important is that we are seeing ourselves this way.

I believe this is only the beginning. This is a pivotal time for our province. We must continue to build on the momentum we have generated to get to this point and show the world just how great New Brunswick can be.

This New Brunswick Day let’s celebrate together. Let’s be proud of what we have achieved. And let’s commit to moving forward with confidence, knowing that anything is possible when we work together.

Happy New Brunswick Day!