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Cancel Canada Day: “Nothing to celebrate” in unmarked graves | Children’s Rights News

Warning: The following story contains details of boarding schools that may be disturbing. The Indian boarding school survivor and family crisis hotline in Canada is available 24 hours a day at 1-866-925-4419.

“Nothing to celebrate.” This is a message from many Aboriginal people from all over Canada. A few weeks after the remains of hundreds of Aboriginal children were abandoned, Canada is celebrating Canada’s National Day holiday on Thursday. Found in an unmarked grave.

The remains were found in a preliminary search by a former “boarding school”, a forced assimilation agency where indigenous children suffered physical and sexual violence, psychological harm, starvation, and other forms of abuse.

In the days leading up to Canada Day, indigenous community leaders and advocates urged people to cancel any celebrations. Instead, they asked to reflect on the true history of Canada and support the indigenous people on this day.

“We need to realize that there is nothing to celebrate in this country, especially considering the empty talk and inaction of the @JustinTrudeau government. On this day, we can mobilize to think about how to make this country a country worth celebrating,” Indigenous Novel David A Robertson (David A Robertson) wrote On Twitter.

The Oshkaatisak Committee of Nishnawbe Aski Nation, which represents dozens of aboriginal people in northern Ontario, said it will not recognize Canada Day, but instead plans to “wear orange and spread awareness of the shameful history and continuing destructive heritage of Indian boarding schools” today. .

“As an aboriginal country, we must stand up strong and speak out to the rest of Canada. The true history of this country has finally been revealed, and it is time to stand together and demand justice and accountability,” from the first of Lake Constance Mallory Solomon, member of the National Oshkaatisak Committee, said in a statement on Tuesday.

Several cities in Canada cancelled Canada’s National Day celebrations in response to the recent discovery Remains of 215 indigenous children Kamloops Indian Boarding School and Updating in British Columbia (BC) 751 unmarked graves Marieval Indian boarding school in Saskatchewan.

Jennifer Bone, Dakota chief of Sioux Valley, Central Manitoba, June also said The community believes there are 104 potential graves in the three cemeteries where the Brandon Boarding School was opened from 1895 to 1972.

The boarding school system in Canada operated from the late 1800s to the 1990s. This is part of a broader colonial project that aims to take over aboriginal lands and forcibly assimilate Aboriginal, Metis, and Inuit children into mainstream Canadian society. Various churches, including the most famous Roman Catholic church, have opened at least 139 boarding schools in Canada.

Indigenous peoples across Canada, especially boarding school survivors and their families, Experienced new trauma Since those unmarked tombs were discovered, although it has been several years Call for true accountability and justice The voices of Ottawa and the Catholic Church are getting louder and louder.

“While the aboriginals mourned, considering the challenging time we, as a Canadian nation, was in after the remains of 215 children were found in a former boarding school, the City Council decided to spend time exploring new possibilities instead of previous ’S planned virtual Canada Day broadcast,” Say On June 11, Lisa Helps, Mayor of Victoria, British Columbia.

Dave Ryan, the mayor of Pickering, Ontario, about 40 kilometers (25 miles) east of Toronto, said the city will focus on “education, reconciliation and reflection” on Canada Day. Ryan said in a statement that from June 30 to July 2, the city flag will also be lowered to half mast. video Share on social media.

“This is not the time to celebrate,” Yukon Dawson City Council also cancelled Canada Day celebrations, said in a statement. Report Canadian Broadcasting Corporation News.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said last week that Canada Day will be a time for Canadians to reflect on “reconciliation, our relationship with indigenous peoples and how it evolves and how it continues to evolve rapidly.”

He told reporters: “I think this Canada Day will be a time to reflect on what we have achieved as a country and what we still have to do.”

However, not everyone supports the call to cancel Canada Day. For example, the leader of the Federal Conservative Party, Erin O’Toole, stated that he “worries that our past or present injustices are often affected by a small group of activists. The voice of the author captures the idea of ​​who uses it to attack Canada itself.”

“As a person who serves Canada and will soon require trust to lead our country, I cannot remain silent when people want to cancel Canada Day. I am proud to be Canadian. I know most people are like that. “O’Toole wrote on Facebook. postal.

“We are not a perfect country. No country is. We must admit our shortcomings. There is a difference between legitimate criticism and always choosing to bring Canada down.”

But Idle No More, a grassroots movement led by aboriginal people, is leading the nationwide cancellation of Canada Day protests. He said that after discovering these unmarked graves, the cancellation of these activities is “the minimum recognition.”

The organization said that so far this year, at least 50 cities have decided to cancel Canada Day events.

“It is heartening to see 50 municipalities cancel Canada Day out of respect for the grief that Aboriginal people are experiencing. All other cities and towns should follow suit,” Idle No More co-founder Sheelah McLean said in a statement Say. statement on Monday. “The stolen indigenous land and the stolen indigenous life are not something to be celebrated.”



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