Tag Archives: Canadian Indian Residential Schools

A brief recollection of Canada’s ‘Indian Policy’

The Kuper Island Residential School in British Columbia is picured in this June 19, 1941, archive photo.
The Kuper Island Residential School in British Columbia, where 160+ unmarked graves were discovered in July 2021, is pictured in this June 19, 1941, archival photo.

At the time of the conquest and into the 19th century, what is called “Indian policy” was diplomatic and military in orientation. Both the English and the French conquerors recognized the Indigenous peoples’ nations. Besides other proof, it is known that they sought and formed alliances with various nations on a sovereign and independent basis. They also entered into the Two Row Wampum which established nation-to-nation relations. Their military and diplomatic policy towards these nations means they were forced to form alliances with them for purposes of defence and for purposes of making advances in the fur trade, in exploration, etc. In 1763, at which time the problem of settlement began to be posed, the Crown gave an assurance by Royal Proclamation that “the Indians” would not be disturbed in their territories beyond the settled colonies. “Indian land” could be surrendered only to the Crown and only by a “General Assembly of Indians.”

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September 30, Orange Shirt Day – Drum and Sing for Missing Children of Indian Residential Schools

National Day of Truth and Reconciliation

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Honouring victims and survivors of Kuper Island Residential School: Thousands march for the children in Spune’luxutth Sulxwe’en Memorial Walk

Thousands of people from Vancouver Island and many from other parts of BC participated in the Spune’luxutth Sulxwe’en Memorial Walk (March for the Children) in Chemainus on August 2. The march was part of the healing process initiated by the Penelakut Tribe following the announcement on July 8 of the confirmation of more than 160 undocumented and unmarked graves near the site of the Kuper Island Industrial School. The school operated on what was then known as Kuper Island, now Penelakut Island, from 1889 to 1975. Like other residential schools, it was the site of cruel abuse of children stolen from their families and their communities. Chemainus is a town on the east coast of Vancouver Island that overlooks Penelakut Island which is on the traditional territory of the Penelakut Tribe.

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Over 160 unmarked graves confirmed near site of Kuper Island Industrial School in BC

(July 14) – The Penelakut Tribe is one of six tribes of the Penelakut First Nation whose traditional territories include parts of southern Vancouver Island and of some of the southern Gulf islands in the Salish Sea between Vancouver Island and the BC mainland. On July 8 Penelakut Tribe Chief Joan Brown, Council and Elders issued an invitation to join in their work to raise awareness of the Kuper Island Industrial School and to inform people of the confirmation of more than 160 undocumented and unmarked graves near the site.

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Cowessess First Nation discovers 751 unmarked graves

Chief Cadmus Delorme of the Cowessess First Nation announced on June 24 that 751 unmarked graves have been found at a cemetery near the former Marieval Indian Residential School. The Residential School operated from 1899 to 1997 in the area where Cowessess First Nation is now located. The colonial state and Catholic Church forced Indigenous children from across Saskatchewan and Manitoba to stay at the school. The RCMP and other police powers threatened Indigenous families with imprisonment if they did not hand over their children. Continue reading

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Mass grave of Indigenous children found at former BC residential school

The buried remains of 215 children who were students of the Kamloops Indian Residential School have been located on the school’s grounds with the help of a specialist in the use of ground penetrating radar, said Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Kukpi7 (Chief) Rosanne Casimir in a May 27 news release. Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc is the home community of the Kamloops Indian Residential School, the largest school in the residential school system run by Indian Affairs, a system that persisted until 1996.Casimir said the deaths were spoken about but had not been previously confirmed. “We had a knowing in our community that we were able to verify. To our knowledge, these missing children are undocumented deaths,” stated Casimir, who said the discovery is an unthinkable loss. “Some were as young as three years old. We sought out a way to confirm that knowing out of deepest respect and love for those lost children and their families, understanding that Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc is the final resting place of these children.”

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Official admission of long-concealed genocide by the Canadian ruling circles

Tens of thousands First Nation children died in residential schools. The fact that Canada’s Aboriginal peoples have not been wiped out, and are indeed growing in numbers, is not proof that genocide never occurred, as some would have us believe. The historical and psychological reality of genocide among our Aboriginal communities is very much alive and a part of living memory. The sooner we recognize this truth, the sooner accounts may be truly rendered without impunity.

Tens-of-thousands-First-Nation-children-died-in-residential-schools

By Dene Moore | The Canadian Press

(This article was originally published on March 14, 2014) – The death records of tens of thousands of First Nations children who died during the time residential schools were operating in Canada have been handed over to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Continue reading

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Tom Flanagan’s last stand

We have written before about one Tom Flanagan, a member of the so-called Calgary School, a small, shadowy group of neoliberal academics from the University of Calgary’s political science, economics and history departments. Flanagan and other members of the group played a key role in promoting and expanding the Alberta-founded Reform Party, finally facilitating its takeover of the old Progressive Conservative Party in 2003 to create the federal Conservative Party that Stephen Harper, a Calgary MP, now leads. Flanagan then became Senior Advisor to the Conservative Leader and National Campaign Chair for the Conservative Party. Flanagan is part of the U.S. fifth column in Canada that operates on different levels. He was originally hired by the University of Calgary in 1968 during the height of the youth and student movement by the first chair of the political science department, U.S.-born Edgar Burke Inlow, who himself was hired in 1961 directly from an intelligence position with the U.S. Department of Defense. Flanagan is a director of the Canadian Defence & Foreign Affairs Institute, based in the university’s Centre for Military and Strategic Studies and financed by some of the world’s largest arms contractors (General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin Canada, and Com Dev to name a few); founding member and president of the discreet, neo-liberal Civitas Society; and has been given a national platform by the CBC and the National Post. Now, his media career as a pundit has come to an end, writes PEGGY MORTON in the first of a two-part series, due to the courageous stand of First Nations’ activists in Lethbridge, Alberta.

Who speaks for Alberta?: Tom Flanagan’s last stand

By PEGGY MORTON*

ON FEBRUARY 27, 2013, the Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs (SACPA) and the University of Lethbridge hosted a talk on the abolishment of the Indian Act with Tom Flanagan. Flanagan is a University of Calgary professor of political science, former advisor to Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Wildrose campaign strategist in the 2012 Alberta election.

During the talk, Levi Little Mustache asked Flanagan about a comment made to the student paper The Manitoban back in 2009 in which he stated, “But that’s actually another interesting debate or seminar: what’s wrong with child pornography – in the sense that it’s just pictures?” Flanagan’s response was filmed by Arnell Tailfeathers and posted to YouTube. The video went viral and led to the University of Calgary announcing Flanagan’s early retirement, CBC’s Power and Politics dropping him as a commentator and the University of Calgary announcing that Flanagan would remain on sabbatical until he retired later in 2013 but would not return to the classroom. Continue reading

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At least 3,000 died in residential schools, research shows

For those who can’t access it, we are posting a Canadian Press article about some of the thousands of First Nation children that died in Canadian Indian Residential Schools. The horror of the story speaks for itself.

Dormitories for aboriginal children in disgraced system were disease ‘breeding grounds’

CP [Feb 18, 2013] – AT LEAST 3,000 CHILDREN, including four under the age of 10 found huddled together in frozen embrace, are now known to have died while they were attending at Canada’s aboriginal residential schools, according to new unpublished research.

While deaths have long been documented as part of the disgraced residential school system, the findings are the result of the first systematic search of government, school and other records. Continue reading

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