By Native News Online Staff
Your questions about Indian boarding schools, as answered by our team.
Survivor of 12 years of boarding school. What is the purpose of the Federal Indian Residential Schools Initiative? Asking for an apology is putting salt on the wound, so don’t spoil it. I’m 60 now and I’ve been carrying these wounds for a very long time.
The stated purpose of the Federal Indian Residential Schools Initiative is not for the government to apologize, but rather to take responsibility and define the current responsibility of the government in rebuilding the cultures it sought to destroy.
The main objective of the survey was, for the first time in history, to identify boarding schools; the location of known and possible student burial sites located on or near school facilities; and the tribal identities and affiliations of the children buried there.
“To begin the process of healing the damage and violence caused by the policy of assimilation, the Department should affirm an express policy of cultural revitalization – supporting the work of Indian tribes, Alaska Native villages and the community Native Hawaiian people to revitalize their languages, culture and traditional food systems, and to protect and strengthen intra-tribal relationships,” Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs Bryan Newland wrote in the report’s conclusion.
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