Editor’s note: This article contains details about experiences at residential schools in B.C. and may be triggering to readers.
The Indian Residential School Survivors Society is offering toll-free 24-hour telephone support for survivors and their families at 1 (866) 925-4419. The KUU-US Crisis Line Society’s 24-hour line is available at 1-800-588-8717.
Surrey’s Civic Plaza was a sea of orange Friday afternoon (June 4).
Skookum Lab, a social innovation project led by the Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee, hosted a vigil, after the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation confirmed there were remains of at least 215 Indigenous children at the site of a former residential school in Kamloops, people have worn orange shirts in honour of the children.
Chief Rosanne Casimir of the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation said the remains of the children, some believed to be as young as three, were confirmed with the help of ground-penetrating radar.
The Kamloops Indian Residential School was Canada’s largest such facility operated by the Roman Catholic Church between 1890 and 1969 before the federal government took it over as a day school until 1978, when it was closed.
Hundreds turned out to the vigil, which included speakers Fern Gabriel and Jeska Slater and songs and a drum circle.
There is candlelight vigil planned at the same location Friday night (June 4), hosted by the BASMODI Team which has been previously planning events in support of the Indian farmers’ protests.
More to come.
– With files from the Canadian Press