Ottawa – We recognize this news release may contain information that is difficult for many and that our efforts to honour Survivors and families may act as an unwelcome reminder for those who have suffered hardships through generations of government policies that were harmful to Indigenous Peoples.
The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line offers emotional support and crisis referral services for residential school Survivors and their families. Call the toll-free crisis line at 1-866-925-4419. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The Hope for Wellness Help Line also offers support to all Indigenous Peoples. Counsellors are available by phone or online chat. This service is available in English and French, and, upon request, in Cree, Ojibway, and Inuktitut. Call the toll-free Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat at www.hopeforwellness.ca.
The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Crisis Line is available to provide emotional support and crisis referral services to individuals impacted by the issue of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls and 2SLGBTQQIA+ individuals. Call the toll-free Crisis Line at 1-844-413-6649. This service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
September 29, 2022 — Saskatoon Tribal Council, Treaty 6 Territory, Saskatchewan — Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
The locating of unmarked burials at former residential school sites across Canada is a tragic reminder of the abuse that many Indigenous children suffered in these institutions. The Government of Canada is working with Survivors, Indigenous leaders and affected families and communities to address historical wrongs and the lasting physical, emotional, mental and spiritual harms related to the legacy of residential schools. Part of this work includes efforts being made to locate and commemorate missing children who attended residential schools, as well as responding to Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action 72 to 76.
Today, Tribal Chief Mark Arcand, of Saskatoon Tribal Council, and the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations announced funding of $368,079 in 2021-22 to support education and awareness activities related to the legacy of residential schools in Saskatoon.
The Saskatoon Tribal Council (STC), in partnership with the City of Saskatoon, will continue to host education and awareness activities on topics including reconciliation, and the legacy or residential schools. The STC has been coordinating monthly events including awareness walks, public information and educational workshops, and healing ceremonies. In addition, the STC is working with the community to plant a memorial garden and has launched the Orange Banner Project in Saskatoon. All events are recorded and will be made into a series of educational videos and personal stories from Elders, Survivors and their families. This community-led process will ensure the STC can undertake this work in their own way and at their own pace.
Addressing the harms suffered by Survivors, their families and communities is at the heart of reconciliation and is essential to renewing and building relationships with Indigenous Peoples, governments, and all Canadians.
“Speaking the truth about reconciliation is the first step, along with that truth comes education and action. We must have truth before reconciliation can make a difference in our people’s lives. Honouring our survivors through this project and having the federal government support a great initiative in the City of Saskatoon shows a commitment to improve the lives of indigenous people that have been affected by residential schools.” – Tribal Chief Mark Arcand, Saskatoon Tribal Council
“Education is the key to understanding the truth and the devastating legacy of residential schools. I encourage all Canadians to learn and participate in awareness events like those organized by the Saskatoon Tribal Council and other Indigenous organizations across the country; it is an important step towards building a reconciled country for all.” – Marc Miller, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations