Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Northern hearings

Northern Quebec residential school survivors share truthCanada NewsWire: Monday, March 14, 2011
On Monday, all three commissioners from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) arrive in the community of Inukjuak to provide residential school survivors with the opportunity to share their truth.

This is the first time all three commissioners will visit northern Quebec together. They will hold hearings on Monday in Inukjuak before spending two days in Kuujjuaq. These visits begin the Northern Hearings where the commissioners will visit 19 northern communities over the next 3 months.

"The northern hearings are an opportunity for residential school survivors, who might not otherwise be able to come to us, to speak up, be heard and inform the commission and Canadians of the unique experiences of children who attended residential schools in Canada's north," said TRC Chair Justice Murray Sinclair.

The purpose of the Northern Hearings are to inform the public about the commission's work and statement gathering process, and provide survivors with time to reflect and share their experiences in lead up to the TRC's second national event to be held in Inuvik, NWT on June 28 - July 1, 2011.

"It is important that we come away with a better understanding of the lingering impacts of residential schools in northern communities in order to lay the groundwork that will move us beyond the truth telling of experiences to revealing gestures of reconciliation," stated Marie Wilson, TRC Commissioner.

In addition to the Northern Hearings and Inuvik National Event, there will be ongoing opportunities for survivors and communities to participate as the TRC process unfolds during the next four years.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission was established as a result of the 2007 Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement. Its mandate is to inform all Canadians about what happened in the 150 year history of the residential schools, and guide and inspire a process of reconciliation and renewed relationships based on mutual understanding and respect.

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