Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh and Grand Council Treaty #3 express deep condolences to the people of Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc First Nation and all communities whose children attended the Kamloops Indian Residential School. The remains of 215 students found on the school site last week is a solemn reminder of the harm inflicted by the Residential School System on First Nations communities across Canada.
“I am outraged, saddened, and completely heartbroken upon hearing the news,” said Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh. “This story has resonated with people from across the country because every First Nation person has been impacted, whether directly or from the intergenerational trauma inflicted by residential schools. The trauma inflicted by the Residential School System is still impacting our communities to this day.”
The Anishinaabe Nation in Treaty #3 calls upon all its affiliated organizations and its neighbours in the Treaty #3 territory to lower their flags to half mast this week in honour of the 215 children and all the survivors of residential schools.
“I hope that this tragic news allows Canadians to consider the harm caused by these institutions,” added Ogichidaa Francis Kavanaugh. “It hurts when people say the effects are in the past or that the policy was anything short of what it was: the crime of genocide. Survivors still face denial of the genocide including most notably from the Roman Catholic Church.”
This week will also see many ceremonies and acts of remembrance across Treaty #3 and all citizens of the Anishinaabe Nation in Treaty #3 are asked to check in with loved ones and community members that may need support.