Category Archives: Colonization

Aboriginal mom fights for custody of infant twins in dispute with ministry

Nicolette Moore says just hours after giving birth to twins, the Ministry of Children and Family Development said they would be removed from her care. (Facebook)

Nicolette Moore says just hours after giving birth to twins, the Ministry of Children and Family Development said they would be removed from her care. (Facebook)

Nicolette Moore says she’s been clean and sober for 2 years, but the ministry still took her twin babies

CBC, June 19, 2015

An aboriginal woman from the Nisga’a First Nation is fighting to gain custody of her infant children after she says she turned her life around.

The Ministry of Children and Family Development seized custody of Nicolette Moore’s infant twins this month. Moore says the ministry cited concerns about her past addiction.

“I was told future behaviour is predicted by past behaviour. I honestly don’t know where my past ends and my future begins.” Read the rest of this entry

Aboriginal history, culture coming to B.C. schools curriculum

Marines from the Royal Navy destroying a Kwakwaka'wakw village in 1850, from The 500 Years of Resistance Comic Book, by Gord Hill.

Marines from the Royal Navy destroying a Kwakwaka’wakw village in 1850, from The 500 Years of Resistance Comic Book, by Gord Hill.

‘You can’t have reconciliation unless you understand what the truth behind it is,’ said Peter Fassbender

By All Points West, CBC News, June 19, 2015

It’s meant to be a step towards reconciliation: B.C.’s new education curriculum will include more instruction on aboriginal culture and history.

The province says this is a response to a “call for action” coming out of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

“The Truth and Reconciliation Commission really showed us the urgent need we have to move forward in a very positive way,” said Education Minister Peter Fassbender.  Read the rest of this entry

Sixties Scoop victims demand apology, compensation

Wayne Snellgrove, centre, with his adoptive family. Snellgrove was one of thousands of aboriginal kids forced from their homes and adopted into mostly non-Native families during the 1960s to 80s. (Submitted by Wayne Snellgrove)

Wayne Snellgrove, centre, with his adoptive family. Snellgrove was one of thousands of aboriginal kids forced from their homes and adopted into mostly non-Native families during the 1960s to 80s. (Submitted by Wayne Snellgrove)

Some estimate more than 20,000 aboriginal kids adopted by mostly non-native families

CBC News, June 18, 2015

Aboriginal adoptees forced from their families by the Canadian government in the Sixties Scoop are expected to receive what is believed to be the first public government apology on Thursday.

Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger is set to deliver the apology, which the province has been working on for months alongside affected adoptees.

The Sixties Scoop is the name given to the period of time between the 1960s and ’80s when thousands of aboriginal children were placed with mostly non-native adoptive families. Read the rest of this entry

Sixties Scoop: ‘They just wanted to remove an Indian child into a white home’

Art by Tania Willard, Secwepemc.

Art by Tania Willard, Secwepemc.

By Chinta Puxley, The Canadian Press/CBC News, June 17, 2015

Child welfare agents took Christine Merasty from her mother’s arms shortly after her birth at a hospital on Christmas Day in 1970.

It was supposed to be a six-month arrangement to allow her mother — a residential school survivor — to get her life together after living on the streets of downtown Winnipeg.

But child-welfare workers were already showing the infant’s picture to prospective white families for adoption. Christine was taken to her new home in the rural Manitoba town of Bowsman when she was four months old.

“They didn’t give my family a chance. They just wanted to remove an Indian child into a white home,” Merasty says. “That wasn’t right. I had a family searching for me for 20 years, wanting me. They would have wanted me in 1970.”

It was called the Adopt Indian Metis program. Today it’s referred to as the Sixties Scoop. Read the rest of this entry

Truth and Reconciliation Commission: By the numbers

Residential Schools WW2 survival ratesSummary report is only one step in reconciliation

By Daniel Schwartz, CBC News, June 2, 2015

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission on Canada’s Indian residential schools uses the term cultural genocide for what happened to the 150,000 or so aboriginal children and their families while the schools operated.

“Residential schooling was always more than simply an educational program: it was an integral part of a conscious policy of cultural genocide,” the TRC’s summary report states. Read the rest of this entry

Thousands march through Ottawa in walk for truth and reconciliation

Walk for Reconciliation in Ottawa, May 31, 2015.

Walk for Reconciliation in Ottawa, May 31, 2015.

Thousands marched through the streets of Ottawa on Sunday in an effort to “transform and renew” the relationship between aboriginal people and other Canadians.

Residential school survivors, along with friends and family, made the symbolic walk under dreary skies along a five-kilometre route from Gatineau, Que., past Parliament Hill and ended at Ottawa’s City Hall.

The walk comes as the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada prepares to release its final report on residential schools Tuesday. Launched in 2009, the commission was given a five-year mandate to examine a dark chapter in Canada’s history and find out exactly how many aboriginal children died while in these schools. Read the rest of this entry

6,000 aboriginal children died in residential school system, report finds

Residential SchoolFinal report from Truth and Reconciliation Commission to be released June 3

By John Paul Tasker, CBC News, May 29, 2015

At least 6,000 aboriginal children died while in the residential school system, says Justice Murray Sinclair, the chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Sinclair, who has been tasked with studying the legacy of the residential schools, says that the figure is just an estimate and is likely much higher. Residential schools were established in the 19th century and the last ones closed in 1996. Read the rest of this entry

Alberta: Dramatic rise in Maskwacis suicide rate creates ‘critical crisis’

"Death wish" graffiti in Maskwacis, formerly known as Hobbema, near Edmonton, Alberta.  Photo: CBC News.

“Death wish” graffiti in Maskwacis, formerly known as Hobbema, near Edmonton, Alberta. Photo: CBC News.

‘It’s beyond crisis. It’s an epidemic,’ says Cree culture and education teacher

By Terry Reith and Briar Stewart, CBC News, May 20, 2015

On the hilltop beside a tiny chapel, Rick Lightning gazes at the fresh grave of his 20-year-old daughter.

The youngest of 11 children, Amber Lightning died March 4, one in a series of suicides that has shaken the small Cree community about an hour’s drive south of Edmonton. Read the rest of this entry

Missing, murdered aboriginal women crisis demands a look at root causes

Roxanne Marie Isadore.

Roxanne Marie Isadore.

New CBC database highlights some patterns behind violence

By Connie Walker, CBC News, April 10, 2015

Roxanne Isadore was already a survivor by the time she reached her sixth birthday.

“She used to scream at night … ‘That guy is after me.'” Her grandmother Angeline recalls how the sexual abuse Roxanne experienced as a child haunted her for years.

As she got older, she continued to struggle. There were suicide attempts, addictions. And when she was 24, she disappeared. Read the rest of this entry

Survivors witness demolition of dreaded First Nations residential school in Alert Bay

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