Following on from my post highlighting the appalling socio-economic conditions Canada’s native peoples live in comes this news via Vice webzine on the still developing “St. Anne’s” scandal:
“The Ontario Superior Court of Justice has ruled that the Canadian Federal Government has to disclose thousands of police documents concerning the torture of native children at St. Anne’s residential School in Fort Albany, Ontario. The infamous school—where children as young as six were disciplined in an electric chair—is, at least to this date, perhaps the most egregious example of the abuses inflicted upon children who were forced into the residential school system. The government has been withholding transcripts and documents related to a police investigation that took place when group of former students jointly filed their complaints in the early ‘90s. The Harper government and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Vaillancourt has cited “privacy concerns” as reason not to produce the documents, although it appears they may simply want to avoid the possibility of having to pay any compensation to the aging survivors.
In his ruling last Tuesday, Justice Paul Perell ripped into the government for their shrewd and insensitive treatment of abuse victims, showing once again that they’re unwilling to comply with their obligations in regards to land treaties or reconcile with any spirit of openness, authenticity, or healing.”
Read the full article including an interview with Fay Brunning who has been working on behalf of former students at St. Anne’s. More analysis here.