A report from the front lines of the search for “truth” in Truth and Reconciliation, and a look at the people trying to make history accessible to aboriginals and non-aboriginals alike.
WINNIPEG—There are two sacred boxes in the offices of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
One is a bentwood box sculpted from a single piece of cedar by an indigenous artist. Its panels are adorned with the mournful carved faces representing First Nations and Métis who suffered through the residential schools era, when government-sanctioned institutions systemically tried to eradicate indigenous culture, tore apart families and operated havens for child abuse.
At least 3,000 children, including four under the age of 10 found huddled together in frozen embrace, are now known to have died during attendance at Canada’s Indian residential schools, according to new unpublished research. Read the rest of this entry
Residential schools left lasting trauma, commission finds
By Terri Theodore, Winnipeg Free Press, Feb 25, 2012
VANCOUVER — Tears form in Barney Williams’ eyes and his hand rests over his heart when he speaks about how important a report on residential schools is for First Nations who grew up in the church-run schools.
“Many survivors are in terrible pain,” said Williams, himself a residential school survivor and an elder with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which released its interim report Friday. Read the rest of this entry