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Supreme Court will not hear from St. Anne’s residential school survivors

Survivors have fought a years-long battle against Ottawa to release thousands of records
Assembly of First Nations National Chief RoseAnne Archibald, from left to right, lawyer Nancy Sandy, Williams Lake First Nation Chief Willie Sellars, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and Minister of Crown Indigenous Relations Marc Miller walk together on the former grounds of St. Joseph’s Mission Residential School, in Williams Lake, B.C., on Wednesday, March 30, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

The Supreme Court of Canada has decided not to heara case of residential school survivors who have fought a years-long battle against Ottawa to release thousands of records.

The group of survivors from St. Anne’s residential school in northern Ontario had looked to the country’s highest court after spending the last decade fighting the federal government to hand over documents.

The Supreme court did not provide a reason dismissing the case, as is usual.

The survivors say the federal government is in breach of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement because it withheld documentation of abuse when deciding upon their compensation.

The 2006 agreement between the federal government, residential school survivors, the Assembly of First Nations and churches governed what financial recompense survivors would receive.

Documentary evidence was supposed to help determine the payments made to those who suffered physical and sexual abuse while being forced to attend the church-run, government-funded institutions.

—Stephanie Taylor, The Canadian Press

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