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This Coffee Company's Canada 150 Sign Includes An Important Reminder

Mi'kma'ki 13,000.

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A coffee business in Nova Scotia has a brilliant roadside sign, which highlights not just Canada's 150th birthday, but the fact that the country exists on Indigenous territory that is much older.

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The Just Us Coffee Roasters Co-op, located in Grand-Pré, has an eye-catching sign along the highway. It reads "CANADA 150" and "MI KMAKI 13000."

Nova Scotia (and much of the rest of Atlantic Canada) is on the traditional territory of the Mi'kmaq people. The land itself is known as Mi'kma'ki, and Mi'kmaq people have lived in the area for 13,000 years.

The Just Us photo has been shared more than 2,200 times since it was posted, and most of the comments are super supportive.

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"The message was not meant to be anti-Canadian in any way," general manager Joey Pittoello told BuzzFeed Canada.

Still, some people are interpreting it that way.

"The message was meant to provoke and spur discussion," he said. "It’s a challenging topic for everyone, including settlers."

People are really liking this take on Canada 150.

I'm liking this #Canada150 sign. https://t.co/5f6tVuR4mx

"Love this sign!!"

CANADA 150 MI KMAKI 13000 Love this sign!! https://t.co/VURIx0KKfX

Canada Day on July 1 will mark the 150th anniversary of the founding of Canada.

Although the federal government has been heavily promoting the occasion, many Indigenous people in Canada see little reason to celebrate. The Canadian government has been responsible for many abuses over the last 150 years, including dispossession, starvation, and cultural genocide against Indigenous peoples in the form of residential schools.

"Settlers should be equally proud of the Indigenous history and culture that existed here for millennia. The fact that we barely acknowledge it perpetuates the injustice," Pittoello said.

Just Us! / Facebook

He said the response to the sign has been mostly positive, from both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

"We just wanted to be sure we all acknowledge this heritage and history and start to have the difficult discussion with one another about how we can make it possible to truly move forward."

Ishmael Daro is a social news editor for BuzzFeed and is based in Toronto.

Contact Ishmael N. Daro at ishmael.daro@buzzfeed.com.

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