What the Present Liberal Government has Failed to Learn
I went on a journey to Goose Bay, Nain, Hopedale, and Cartwright in early December to help members of the Residential Schools Class Action with their applications for compensation.
The Government of Canada and survivors of Newfoundland and Labrador residential schools reached a class action settlement worth over $50 million in May of 2016. Class members will receive compensation related to the duration of their attendance at residential school and level of harm suffered.
It was gratifying to meet with class members, hear their stories, and be part of the reconciliation process. Our wisdom is in our people.
This was also a great opportunity to speak with indigenous leadership and listen to their views on issues between their organizations and government. I spoke with Peter Penashue in Shesashit, Todd Russell in Goose Bay, along with Johannes Lampe, Richard Panek, and Sean Lyall in Nain, to name a few.
I came away more convinced than ever that we must respect, consult, and negotiate with the indigenous people of Labrador, a lesson that the present Liberal administration has failed to learn.
The photo on the left is Ches making a house call in Cartwright, Labrador to help Samuel Howell apply for compensation from the Residential Schools settlement. Irene Howell is on Ches’ left. The photo to the right is Ches visiting Elizabeth Mesher of Paradise River in December at the Daffodil Centre in St John's to help with her application for compensation from the Residential Schools settlement.