When Was The Indian Residential School Settlement Agreement Signed

For the first time, compensation is offered to every survivor living for attending a residential school. After Fontaine`s public statement and the resistance and events around Oka in 1990, the Canadian government partially responded by initiating the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Persons. The Commission was established in 1991 and has consulted with First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities and individuals across Canada. An important finding from the Royal Commission has focused on the history of residential schools in Canada. In 1998, the Canadian government responded to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples by creating the Aboriginal Healing Foundation. The Healing Foundation has made community- and survivor-based healing projects available across Canada and has built a foundation for healing assistance and research based on community needs and the legacies of residential schools. Whereas in Canada there were already residential schools in the 17th century in New France, the residential school system did not really develop until after the Indian Act was passed in 1876, giving the federal government the right and responsibility to educate (and assimilate) Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Beginning in the 1880s, the government worked with Roman Catholic and Protestant churches to establish a system of residential schools across Canada. In 1894, the Indian Act was amended to make residential school attendance mandatory. Until 1930, when the system reached its peak, there were about 80 schools across Canada, mainly in the western provinces and territories, although some existed in northwestern Ontario and northern Quebec.

While some educators were engaged, the experience was traumatic for many Aboriginal children, who were abducted from their families and subjected to severe discipline, the devaluation of their culture and religion, and even physical and sexual abuse. In 1969, the government decided to end the partnership with churches and students were gradually integrated into provincial school systems, although the last residential school was not closed until 1996. Approximately 150,000 Aboriginal youth attended residential schools from the 1880s to 1990s, and it was estimated that 80-90,000 alumni would be affected by the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement. The IRSSA said the 50 or so Catholic groups that ran «Catholic» schools had to pay $79 million for the mistreatment of survivors. There were three components: $29 million for the now-disbanded Aboriginal Healing Foundation, $25 million in kind and $25 million through fundraising. [40] In his July 16, 2015 judgment in the Queen of Saskatchewan Court of Justice in Regina, Saskatchewan, Justice Neil Gabrielson stated that the federal government had «liberated Catholic institutions from the three financial obligations under the comparison agreement, including the «best efforts» fundraiser in exchange for a $1.2 million refund in administrative costs.» [41] The federal government, then Prime Minister Stephen Harper, had given the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development a mandate to «negotiate a comparison with Catholic institutions»[42] with respect to their financial obligations under the IRSSA. [13] In a 2016 Globe and Mail article, Gloria Galloway stated that «in an attempt to get the Catholic Church to pay the full $29 million in cash, the government inadvertently released it from any obligation it should have pursued with a desolate fundraiser.» [41] In Regina, Saskatchewan, on December 15, 2006, Justice Dennis Ball approved the «regulation of class and individual residence rights» under the IRSSA. [17] Terri Brown, the chair of the Centre`s Survivors` Circle and head of the Tahltan First Nation in British Columbia, said she had a terrible experience in the comparison process, where her assertion was ultimately rejected.