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Posted on: May 31, 2021

Town of High Level flags flying at half mast to mark the Kamloops residential school tragedy

The Town of High Level brought its flags to half-mast today in memory of the children whose remains have been found at the site of the former residential school in Kamloops. The Town extends its sympathy to the families of the children.

“It is with deep sadness that we recognize, not only the children at the Kamloops site, but all of the children who died in the residential school system.” states High Level Mayor, Crystal McAteer, in reference to the estimated 6,000 deaths at residential schools. “It is horrific that so many children can be found in an unmarked grave with little or no record of them ever existing. Words are not enough to express our feelings about this discovery.”

While it is important to mark this event and reflect on the trauma inflicted on Canada’s First Nations over the history of this country, it cannot be a one-time event. Let this moment of shared sorrow be a call for a renewal of our efforts to address the historical wrongs suffered by our First Nations people through the 94 Calls to Action put forward by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Let this moment also show our leaders of the need to address TRC Call to Action #81:

“We call upon the federal government, in collaboration with Survivors and their organizations, and other parties to the Settlement Agreement, to commission and install a publicly accessible, highly visible, Residential Schools National Monument in the city of Ottawa to honour Survivors and all the children who were lost to their families and communities.”

Such a monument would act as a continued and sobering reminder of past injustices inflicted on Canada’s First Nations, and as a lasting promise that these types of atrocities never happen again.

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