Canada's state-funded Christian schools commit ‘cultural genocide’ and sexually abuse aboriginal students, claims new report

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission has urged the government to move past apologies and into action

Justin Carissimo
Friday 05 June 2015 03:00
Comments

A new report has found that Canadian First Nation children who were forced to attend state-funded Christian schools were sexually and physically abused.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission released a damning 360-page document which claimed that more than 150,000 children were trained to lose their native cultures so they could be integrated into mainstream society, the Associated Press reported.

More than 130 of the state-funded schools operated from the 19th century through to the 1970’s, where students claimed they were beaten for speaking their native languages.

"[The children] were stripped of their self-respect and they were stripped of their identity," Justice Murray Sinclair recently announced. Mr Sinclair condemned the schools calling them the "darkest and most troubling chapters in our collective history."

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission was created from a $5 billion settlement between the government, churches and the surviving First Nation students. The commission has urged Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Canadian government to move on from apologising to fixing the devastation they’ve inflicted on hundreds of thousands of students.

The release comes after officials traveled the country for six years listening to testimonies from nearly 7,000 witnesses, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reported. Mr Sinclair told the broadcast station that he hopes the report will serve as a reference point for future generations to preserve and uphold aboriginal culture.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in