TRC to release final report on Canada's residential school legacy

OTTAWA - The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which documented the haunting legacy of Canada's residential schools, is set to present its final report Tuesday to the parties in the class-action settlement that led to its creation.

See Full Article

Justice Murray Sinclair, who has led the TRC's exhaustive investigation over the past six years, said each member of the agreement will receive a copy of the massive findings to complete the commission's obligation.

The Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement was reached after former residential school survivors took the federal government and churches to court with the support of the Assembly of First Nations and Inuit organizations.

The arrangement was designed to help repair the lasting damage caused by the schools, and - in addition to compensating survivors - to explore the truth behind the government-funded, church-operated assimilation program that existed in Canada from the 1870s to 1996.

After unveiling its summary in June, which included the key finding that the residential school system facilitated nothing short of "cultural genocide," the TRC will now release hard copies of the full report.

Each copy weighs about 25 pounds, Sinclair estimates. But that's nothing compared to the work's emotional heft.

"Every time I stand in front of a crowd - particularly of survivors, but a crowd generally - and I talk about the issue of residential schools, I always wonder if I can get through it," Sinclair said.

"It is always such a challenge because it ... has been a very demanding piece of work and that alone would be enough to cause difficulty to talk about. But more importantly, there's so many people who have been part of this who are no longer with us."

Among the commission's 94 recommendations was a national public inquiry to examine the phenomenon of missing and murdered aboriginal women - a demand long resisted by former prime minister Stephen Harper.

Last week, the new Liberal government set the wheels in motion by kicking off the "design phase" of the long-awaited inquiry.

The pre-inquiry consultation involves speaking to victims' families and aboriginal organizations.

"They've taken steps to carry out that commitment and that's important," Sinclair said.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has also approached aboriginal issues in a more respectful manner, he added.

"In our calls to action, in our summary report, we did talk about the importance in leadership and the importance of there being a national voice around reconciliation," he said.

"It is also about changing the way we talk to and about each other."

Sinclair, the first aboriginal judge appointed in Manitoba, said he's hopeful there will be a broad discussion about the inquiry and its terms of reference, and that the inquiry is tasked with exploring whether systemic issues are at play.

"I think really the emphasis is going to be to try to answer the big questions of what happened and why?" Sinclair said.

"It is not just the families, it is also Canadian society. I think Canada needs to know as well why is this happening and is it happening elsewhere? That's a bigger question ... is this going on around the world?"



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • China responsible for surge in ozone-depleting emissions, study suggests

    World News CBC News
    China is to blame for much of the increase in illegal ozone-depleting substances (ODS) since 2013, according a study published by the journal Nature on Thursday, with domestic companies accused of violating a global production ban. Source
  • Whitby, Ont., resident set to collect $55M Lotto Max jackpot

    Canada News CTV News
    A lucky Whitby, Ont., resident is set to become Canada’s newest multimillionaire, collecting a whopping $55 million Lotto Max jackpot Thursday morning.WATCH LIVE @ 11 ET: Winner of $55 million lottery jackpot revealed According to the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG), the lone mystery winner will collect the top prize from the April 5 draw the lottery prize centre in downtown Toronto at 11 a.m. Source
  • TD, RBC report 2nd quarter profits up

    Canada News CBC News
    Canada's two biggest banks posted profits of more than $3 billion dollars each in the second quarter, exceeding analyst expectations. Royal Bank of Canada earned $3.23 billion, helped by growth in its capital markets, personal and commercial banking and wealth management businesses. Source
  • 'American Taliban' Lindh being released after 17 years

    World News CTV News
    In this Jan. 24, 2002 file photo, John Walker Lindh, far right, leaves the Alexandria Detention Center in Alexandria, Va., before dawn, on the way to his first appearance in a nearby federal court. Lindh, the young Californian who became known as the American Taliban after he was captured by U.S. Source
  • John Lindh, U.S. volunteer for the Taliban, released from prison

    World News CBC News
    John Walker Lindh, the American captured in Afghanistan in 2001 while fighting for the Taliban, was released from federal prison on Thursday, according to a report. Lindh, photographed as a wild-eyed, bearded 20-year-old at his capture in November 2001, leaves a federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind. Source
  • Senior German diplomat in Tehran for nuclear deal talks

    World News CTV News
    BERLIN -- A senior German diplomat headed Thursday to Tehran to press Iran to continue to respect the landmark nuclear deal, despite the unilateral withdrawal of the U.S. and increasing pressure from Washington. Tensions have soared in the Mideast recently as the White House earlier this month sent an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers to the region over a still-unexplained threat it perceived from Iran. Source
  • 10 former health ministers urge Ontario government to reverse cuts

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Ten former Ontario health ministers representing three political parties are urging the provincial government to reverse its cuts to public-health funding. Six former Liberal ministers, three New Democrats and one Progressive Conservative have signed an open letter to Health Minister Christine Elliott, imploring her to stop what they call "drastic" cuts. Source
  • Austria: 3 women found dead in Vienna apparently starved

    World News CTV News
    BERLIN -- Austrian police say that a woman and her two daughters who were found dead at their Vienna apartment earlier this week appear to have starved to death. The bodies of the 45-year-old mother and her daughters, both aged 18, were found in municipal housing in the Austrian capital's Floridsdorf district on Tuesday. Source
  • Canadian secretly filmed allegedly hitting children in Japanese daycare

    Canada News CTV News
    A Canadian teacher has been fired from an unlicensed daycare centre in Japan after a co-worker recently shared videos online he secretly captured with a pen camera that appeared to show the man hitting and roughly handling young children. Source
  • Remains found in France identified as those of Burlington soldier who died in WWII

    Canada News CBC News
    Recently discovered remains of a Royal Hamilton Light Infantry (RHLI) soldier who died in the Second World War will be buried with the rest of his body nearly 75 years after his death. The Canadian Armed Forces say partial skeletal remains found near Verrières, a village in the commune of Saint-Martin-de-Fontenay France, have been identified as those of Sgt. Source