Residential School Apology Worth More than Money

Sir Alexander Mackenzie School in the Northwest Territories was once a Residential School. Photo care of cyborgess on Flickr.

There's something big a-brewing in Canadian history that will make waves over the next few days but which seems to be low on the totem pole of recent news.

Tomorrow, Wednesday, June 11th, Prime Minister Stephen Harper will formally apologize to the thousands of abused victims of residential schools. It took years but a while back the government started compensating survivors for the abuse and trauma that they suffered in these residential schools which peppered much of the Canadian landscape in the 19th and 20th centuries. I'm not all that familiar with the systems but I have read a few accounts of what happened in these places and none of them were pretty.

I'm not going to pretend to know the details of what has transpired over the years but I do feel that it's extremely important that we, as Canadians, mark this day in Canadian history. If you're looking for more information on the residential school system, I suggest this wiki entry, the Aboriginal Canada Portal which has a fantastic collection of links to various resources and even this amazing video care of CBC's "A Lost Heritage" which shows a short clip that aired on CBC in the mid 50's.

For those individuals in the Burnaby and New Westminster area interested in seeing the apology, the Aboriginal Student Services has booked Lecture Theatre 1614 of the New West Campus to show the official stream of the Residential School Apology. The theater has been booked from 11:30 until 1:30 on Wednesday, June 11 with the hopes that there might be people wishing to view this historic moment. Any and all are welcome.

At the moment I can't find information on who will be live broadcasting the feed but if you have any information on where we can see this historic event unfold online, please leave me a comment and I will post an update.


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