A year after the grim truth of 215 Indigenous children buried in unmarked graves in Kamloops, BC was uncovered for all to witness, many communities across the country have been reeling from this news. Although this was a known fact exposed by many former residential students, as well as families of those who never returned, the shock has given strength to many of us and helped with speaking power to our own truths.
During the last year, the Cree Nation of Chisasibi has spent much time with Survivors, Elders, intergenerational Survivors, as well as the community to discuss and form a plan of action concerning the Anglican and Catholic residential schools that operated on Fort George Island. After much reflection, the community has chosen to investigate five (5) sites in the area of these former institutions.
“The community of Chisasibi, after extensive consultation with members of the Cree Nation, is advancing and announcing a difficult next step. I wish to acknowledge the community for all the efforts that they have put into this process and their sensitivity to all those impacted by these schools. Although very challenging, I believe it is the right step forward in addressing long-heard concerns from former students; shining a light on something that has been kept in the dark for way too long, taking another step in the healing journey of our survivors, and seeking truth for what is a difficult part of the Cree Nation’s history.” – Grand Chief Mandy Gull-Masty
Following today’s announcement from Chief Daisy House of the Cree Nation of Chisasibi, it is with a renewed sense of collaboration and duty that the Cree Nation Government will continue to provide support to the Cree Nation of Chisasibi as they begin this sensitive but significant next step that will hopefully bring some answers and solace to the friends and families of our young ones who never had the chance to be proud of the power of their heritage or the opportunity to be part of a thriving and resilient people.
Flora Weistche, Political Attachée
Telephone: (514) 604-3276