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Surprised this hasn’t become a thread yet.

any way….I know nothing about the issue. I have some questions. What were the actual living conditions like in these schools? Why are there so many deceased children at these sites? Were deaths rates for children unusually high at these locations?

I’ve heard the families willingly released their children to these schools? Is that true or were they forcibly taken from their families.

My kids completed grade 10 Canadian history recently….I still don’t think this part of the curriculum.
 

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I always heard the conditions in the schools was not good and thought of it like going to a strict religious school or something like that.

I had no idea that there were thousands of children who died in those schools and were buried on the grounds. It was never discussed in school.

No recording of the deaths ? No funerals or parents told ? Just bury the kids in unmarked graves ?

What kind of people do that ? That is a special kind of evil.

I did some research a couple years ago into mental health hospitals in Ontario....because of some connections I saw to those facilities (more than coincidences could explain) and a rash of murders in our city. Some of the suspects (in my mind) were high level people who worked as doctors and administrators in the hospitals and had connections also to universities. I think the police investigators knew it but couldn't prove it and they couldn't accuse the people because of their high profile in the community.

They were evil places as well and Ontario closed them all down after some scathing articles were written by well known Canadian journalists like Pierre Berton.

Any place where there are defenseless people..........evil tends to lurk close by.
 

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"it’s almost as if the prime conditions of the outbreak of epidemics had been deliberately created." - medial health officer Dr. Peter Bryce to his superiors at the Department of Indian Affairs.

In 1907, Canada's Chief Medical Health officer, PH Bryce, raised the alarm about death rates of 25% of children in the schools per year due to inequitable health care, poor health practices and lack of ventilation.


Daniel Kennedy (Ochankuga’he) describes his experience at the Qu’Appelle (Lebret) residential school.
"In 1886, at the age of twelve years, I was lassoed, roped and taken to the Government School at Lebret. Six months after I enrolled, I discovered to my chagrin that I had lost my name and an English name had been tagged on me in exchange… “When you were brought here [the school interpreter later told me], for purposes of enrolment, you were asked to give your name and when you did, the Principal remarked that there were no letters in the alphabet to spell this little heathen’s name and no civilized tongue could pronounce it ... "



As for agreement to send their kids ...

"An amendment to the Indian Act in 1894, under Prime Minister Mackenzie Bowell, made attendance at day schools, industrial schools, or residential schools compulsory for First Nations children.

Due to the remote nature of many communities, school locations meant that for some families, residential schools were the only way to comply.

The schools were intentionally located at substantial distances from Indigenous communities to minimize contact between families and their children.

Indian Commissioner Hayter Reed argued for schools at greater distances to reduce family visits, which he thought counteracted efforts to assimilate Indigenous children."

I did not learn about them from the school curriculum either.


There's also the Sixties Scoop ... Sixties Scoop - Wikipedia


Cheers
 

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Along with the tearing down of statues, and calls to rename universities, sports teams etc.........there is now a movement to rename Dundas Street in Ontario.

Dundas Street goes hundreds of miles. You can drive on Dundas Street (main street in London) all the way to Toronto, through cities, towns, and villages.

To change the name will cause a huge disruption and headaches for everyone who live or do business on that street.

It seems kind of pointless when hardly anyone even knew who Dundas was. I am 70 and never heard of him before now.

We should stop naming streets and buildings after famous people because who knows what is going to show up from their past.
 

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Not sure why some wiki links and a CTV news link would need review by a moderator before making the post visible. IIRC, none of other messages so tagged were made visible at a later date so here is a synopsis.

To answer the question of whether the residential schools were mandatory, go to the wiki link about them. It lists the 1894 amendment to the Indian Act attendance at day, industrial or residential schools mandatory. Indian commissioner Hayter Reed argued for schools to be at great distances to cut down on family visits. He felt these visits worked against assimilation.

The result was residential schools being located long distance away for the community. It also meant that the residential school was the only way for many families to meet the school requirement.

Some First Nations wanted education to help their community but did not expect it would include separating parents from children.

Daniel Kennedy (Ochankuga’he) describes his experience at the Qu’Appelle (Lebret) residential school in his memoires. He describes how in 1886, at the age of 12 he was lassoed, roped and taken to the residential school.

In a recent interview I heard, one of the Sixties Scoop kids said he was taken in his teens. He had never seen his mother have problems with alcohol or drugs until her seven children were taken from her.


There is also Canada's Chief Medical Health officer, Dr Peter H Bryce who in 1907 wrote in his report to his superiors at the Department of Indian Affairs that from his visits, it is almost like the prime conditions for epidemics were built into the residential schools. His reported to have raised the alarm about death rates of 25% of children in the schools per year due to inequitable health care, poor health practices and lack of ventilation.


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Along with the tearing down of statues, and calls to rename universities, sports teams etc.........there is now a movement to rename Dundas Street in Ontario ...
Sure ... though he kept the UK slave trade going longer, despite it being unpopular in the UK so I'm not sure that First Nations care much about him or why it would be relevant to learning about residential schools.

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I don't know anything about him, but here is a paragraph from Wikipedia.

Evidently, although he never set food in Canada, as the UK Home Secretary he had influence over the British colony that was Canada.

I don't think it is an indigenous issue to have the name changed, but is part of the overall rethinking of our past connections.

Given his efforts to delay the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade during the 1790s, subjugation of First Nations communities in Canada as Home Secretary,[62] as well as perceptions about the role Dundas played as Secretary of State for War, campaigners have argued against the commemoration or memorialisation of Dundas.[63][64] Following the Black Lives Matter protests in 2020, several cities around the world have made efforts to review the naming of public places and statues commemorating slave traders.[63]
 

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Surprised this hasn’t become a thread yet.

any way….I know nothing about the issue. I have some questions. What were the actual living conditions like in these schools? Why are there so many deceased children at these sites? Were deaths rates for children unusually high at these locations?
Why surprised? The issue has been well reported in some depth in the last number of weeks and there is little anyone at CMF can add to the conversation. It is a travesty of monumental proportions and the repercussions are only starting. It is going to take years to peel back all the layers of this onion. Residential school living (physical and mental) conditions were horrifying and would border on ethnic cleansing (short of outright murder) in most countries. Far too many disproportionate deaths among the student group, never mind the cleansing of first nations spirituality, culture and language.

A special prosecutor with subpoena privileges will likely be needed to unwind this mess. The evil perpetuated by religious orders, the Catholic Church in particular, and complicity of government and police forces requires an independent third party to be in charge.
 

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This will end up like most sex abuse scandals involving clergy.

The focus of the Church will never really be on the victims. Rather, the focus will be on money and on financial liability. And on protecting their rather tarnished reputation. As it always has been.

There was a commitment by the Church to fund $25 million in victim restitution years ago. They have funded approx $ 4 million to date. Claiming poverty and no available funds. Wriggling out of every financial commitment they have made to past and current victims is an clear indication of their 'caring'.

Yet the media reports in the same time frame the Church raised $292 Million additional monies for various projects. Zero comment by the Church on this of course.

Individually there may be some sense or responsibility towards the victims. Collectively there will not be.

It is all about the money. Always has been, always will be. It one of the reasons why, IMHO, the Church will make every excuse not to hand over documents or will conceal the most incriminating of them. I would prefer that the authorities make this a criminal matter and issue search and seizure warrants.

Collectively, as an organization, they have no shame whatsoever.
 

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The focus needs to be on government.
It wasn't priests who were going kidnapping children and making it mandatory to attend.
Church was complicit in actions of the government, not the other way around.
And of course it will end up exactly like every single investigation government ever did on itself.
Church really can't do anything at this point. They have no power whatsoever.
Government still has power to take children away from you and exterminate them, and nobody questions that power.
 

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Yeah, me too, I vote for Canada spending all of its GDP for the next 100 years or so on investigating and paying compensation for past wrongs. I am sure there are many more to come to light. We must leave no stone unturned, and no reason to ignore pre-confederation times. Lots of nastiness perpetrated too by those who went on to be founders of this not-so-great (as we are starting to see) nation.

For example, as reported here: Building the Transcontinental Railroad: How 20,000 Chinese Immigrants Made It Happen
we are told of the Chinese brought over the build Canada's Transcontinental Railroad, the writer there says:

They toiled through back-breaking labor during both frigid winters and blazing summers. Hundreds died from explosions, landslides, accidents and disease. And even though they made major contributions to the construction of the Transcontinental Railroad, these 15,000 to 20,000 Chinese immigrants have been largely ignored by history.

What a shameful chapter in our history. Enough to give me the vapours and have me reaching for the smelling salts. I am sure we can locate some ancestors in China to whom to pay millions in compensation.

And there must be many owed much over the Quebec conscription crisis of 1917.

And leave us not forget the interned Japanese in WWII. Sure, some modest compensation was paid to some, but downright niggardly (can we say that anymore?) by modern standards. I think that matter needs to be reopened, Royal Commissions appointed and special prosecutors brought in with plenary powers to subpoena the dead.

I can come up with a lot more, and I am sure there are countless worthy cases with which I am unfamiliar. Canada has no business addressing trivial issues such as climate change, child poverty, health care, education to make us competitive in the future, etc., not when we have unfinished (barely started) business in identifying and making atonement for our past. That will take time, a lot. And money, a lot more. But it must be done. Ex debito justitiae.

What follows starting in the next paragraph was written recently by someone else. That individual and I are maybe the only two in Canada who share the same thinking. A cry in the wilderness. I expect some expressions of contempt, but I care not. I no longer feel the need to please anyone. I accept that AltaRed represents the overwhelming majority, who wish for us to devote endless resources and long years "to peel back all the layers of this onion". And all the onions still in the root cellar.

Because 215 children’s graves were found at the Kamloops Residential School DOES NOT constitute genocide. Moreover, it may not indicate much of anything! Of course, the Residential Schools were ill-conceived, seemingly poorly run and maybe even criminally negligent and cruel at times. But 215 children’s deaths over the 88 years of the Kamloops operation with as many as 500 kids in residence at a time when the First Nations were suffering greatly from Tuberculosis is likely close to the normal mortality rate for those unfortunate times. That works out to approximately 2.5 children per year from amongst 500 annually enrolled, underprivileged, unhealthy children. By my poor math that is .5% per year. Coincidentally, the Canadian child mortality rate in 2019 was 4.9 deaths per 1000 children or .5%.

Yes, I know that we can lament and grieve the situation they suffered and that we should. Those kids died separated from their families and were discarded heartlessly. Many of those that survived described the schools as cruel, inhumane and they clearly did not achieve what was intended, namely assimilating, educating and training the students in becoming ‘white’. Residential schools were a mistake.

But even the coldest, cruelest and stupidest of the staff, even the pedophiles (if there were), even the bullies and creeps were NOT waging genocide. They were up to all sorts of no good and definitely not enough do-good but they were not engaged in genocide.

Sometimes (most times) this nonsense of handwringing, self-flagellation and exaggerated, misplaced apologies over every perceived wrong done in the past is, at best, a dramatic self-serving (politically) apology of sorts. Sometimes it is merely stating an ugly fact about what our ancestors perpetrated in their ignorance. And maybe that is a necessary component of reconciliation. But, not only is it not working, it is making matters worse. If Trudeau admits to someone else’s genocide, then that is tantamount to pleading guilty to murder on a grand scale on behalf of someone long dead. Trudeau is accepting guilt for something he wasn’t even around for and those that were are no longer alive to defend themselves. Not in any way.

A.E Ryerson is considered the ‘father’ of modern education in Ontario and that included the concept and creation of the Residential schools. That his mission failed is fact. But, so far, that seems to be the only fact that I can discern. He did not have a mandate for genocide, he had a mandate for education. He was also a strict Methodist preacher born in 1803 to a well-off family in Ontario and was very likely not so-very-much understanding of the First Nations due to his somewhat removed and privileged place in society and politics. We have had more than our share of those kind of out-of-touch politicians. I probably would be disinclined to like A.E. Ryerson but his life history is not one of murder and cruelty.

Trudeau assuming Ryerson’s guilt (and J.A. McDonald’s) is stupid in itself but, of course, the modern politician also assumes to distribute compensation to the victim’s ancestors. Trudeau will provide money from the taxpayer, not his own pocket (how sincere and heartfelt can that be?). How does giving millions of dollars today make any sense in this matter anyway? Some 35 year old can now get an F-150 to make up for the long lost cousin who died 100 years ago in a Residential school from TB? Maybe, just maybe, some compensation might be justified for any ex-student still alive. Maybe. Sometimes, however, a mistake is just a mistake and it was unfortunate and we should all just do better now that we know better. FULL STOP.

I wouldn’t make this rant if the so-called compensation and acts of contrition weren’t clearly having the opposite effect of the intention. First Nations do not accept all the money and apologies and then say, “Oh, gee. Thanks for the moolah. Let’s be friends now.”

Of course not. They do what most people would do, they say, “Hey, you owe me even more money than that last amount. We found more evidence of wrong doing by your ancestors hundreds of years ago and now we want even more money, more apologies and more concessions.” In other words, we are perpetuating the mistake by feeding into ridiculous expectation that also DO NOT HELP the people, First Nations or General Population. This current policy of buying forgiveness is really just a separation pathway that leads to more conflict.

Put another way: I do not blame a young German for Hitler. How can anyone? My father was so shot up in the second world war that he had a 100% disability pension. Our family lives were made very difficult as a result of his war injuries. Should I sue Germany? Does Merkel owe me an apology? I think it is time to ease up on the mea culpa craze, don’t you?
 

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Along with the tearing down of statues, and calls to rename universities, sports teams etc.........there is now a movement to rename Dundas Street in Ontario.

Dundas Street goes hundreds of miles. You can drive on Dundas Street (main street in London) all the way to Toronto, through cities, towns, and villages.

To change the name will cause a huge disruption and headaches for everyone who live or do business on that street.

It seems kind of pointless when hardly anyone even knew who Dundas was. I am 70 and never heard of him before now.

We should stop naming streets and buildings after famous people because who knows what is going to show up from their past.
I also never heard about Dundas guy 😁... but because of those “rename streets “ movement” , we learn more history 🤣

P.S. I’d suggest rename all related to Mackenzie King
 

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We can't change the past, but we can shape the future. How we treat indigenous folks today is as relevant and isn't that great.
 

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Or just say Dundas street is now named after Gibor Dundas and be done with it......who ?
 

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I think a special investigation is necessary, if only to: 1) bring clarity and awareness to Canadians of this sordid century and a half of our history, 2) to force public disclosure of all the records, and 3) to get the Catholic Church to cough up the remaining $21 million of unpaid settlement (other denominations have paid out their share of the settlement).

Most Canadians know very little of this chapter of our history and the institutions and players who were front and center. If governments won't let it be taught in our schools, then disclosure must come in other ways. The Catholic Church is especially egregious in its involvement in the residential school system and it cannot seem to find $21 million even though they still raise hundreds of millions for their flashy buildings. It may well bring a true (more balanced) appreciation of the residual effects still present today. We owe it to ourselves.
 

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Why are there so many deceased children at these sites? Were deaths rates for children unusually high at these locations?
Hundred years ago “The commission ultimately determined that at least 3,200 children died while a student at a Residential School.”

And now.
  • In 2019 an estimated 5.2 million (5,200,000) children under 5 years died mostly from preventable and treatable causes. Children aged 1 to 11 months accounted for 1.5 million of these deaths while children aged 1 to 4 years accounted for 1.3 million deaths. Newborns (under 28 days) accounted for the remaining 2.4 million deaths.
  • An additional 500,000 older children (5 to 9 years) died in 2019.
  • Leading causes of death in children under-5 years are preterm birth complications, birth asphyxia/trauma, pneumonia, congenital anomalies, diarrhoea and malaria, all of which can be prevented or treated with access to simple, affordable interventions including immunization, adequate nutrition, safe water and food and quality care by a trained health provider when needed.
  • Older children (5-9 years) had one of the largest declines in mortality since 1990 (61%), due to a decline in infectious diseases. Injuries (including road traffic injuries and drowning) are the leading causes of death among older children.
3.2 k and 5.7 millions.
Honestly I think this topic with residential schools is way overblown by MSM.
 
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