Tag Archives: Christy Jordan-Fenton and Margaret Pokiak-Fenton

These Are My Words

By Manda Aufochs Gillespie

As an immigrant to Canada, I was shocked to learn about the Canadian legacy of residential schools. I had no idea growing up in the U.S. that such things were happened and had happened just north of the border. The indigenous residential schools operated in Canada starting in the 1870s with the last one not closing until1996. Children as young as four were taken—often against the will of their families or with coercive techniques such as threatening jail time—and it is estimated that over 150,000 Indian, Inuit, and Métis children attended residential school. I was reminded that it is a  legacy that continues to shade aspects of Canadian culture and identity for all Canadians this year when I became a citizen. At the ceremony, the judge encouraged all of us new Canadians to make the act of reconciliation personal and spoke about how she was doing that in her life. 

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