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‘This is a historic moment for the people of Canada,’ House poised to vote on papal apology for residential schools

By Jolson Lim      

The government's Indian residential schools, which ran from the 1840s until 1996, took 150,000 First Nations, Métis, and Inuit children away from their families. Some 32,000 were sexually assaulted and 6,000 died. The House will vote on Tuesday, requesting Pope Francis apologize for the Catholic Church's role in what the Truth and Reconciliation Commission calls a 'cultural genocide.'

Quebec NDP MP Romeo Saganash, who was forced to attend a residential school along with his 13 siblings, briefly noted in the House that he had not put his name forward to speak on the motion. 'The reason for that is pretty simple. I have gone to residential school, 10 years in my case. When people are being invited to speak about that experience, they are being invited to relive that trauma. I was not prepared to do that.' The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

NDP MP Gord Johns talked about his two uncles who died after their lives were “completely destroyed” by the Indian residential schools, a fact long hidden from him because it was too painful for his family to talk about. 

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UN nuclear disarmament rep ‘counting on Canada’ to help bridge tricky international divides

News|By Mike Lapointe
'Disarmament is not something idealistic or a utopian ideology,' says UN high rep for disarmament affairs Izumi Nakamitsu, and that it's 'part of security.'

Black Canadian groups call on feds to address economic inequities facing community

News|By Beatrice Paez
'The work they’re doing is going to need to speak for itself,' says Liberal strategist Tiffany Gooch, about the party's recovery from the prime minister's blackface scandal.

‘Just live your life,’ women’s rights advocate tells survivors of violence

News|By Palak Mangat
'Focusing on resilience ignores the systemic problem that forces people to fight so hard in the first place,' says Julie Lalonde.

‘A real lack of leadership’: critics call for better response from feds as Wet’suwet’en blockades continue

‘Negotiations should take as long as they need to,’ says Ellen Gabriel, a former Mohawk spokesperson during the Oka Crisis.

‘I don’t celebrate Black History Month, I celebrate Black history 12 months of the year’: Sen. Bernard on her fight for equality

News|By David Lochead
After sitting as a Senator for more than three years, Wanda Thomas Bernard says she is more determined than ever to continue fighting for causes like social justice, diversity, and inclusion.

Advocate calling for a simplified suicide hotline number gets ally in Sen. Batters

News|By Beatrice Paez
'Silence is never the right response when suicide is the subject,' says Kathleen Finlay. 'It’s too important an issue for our political leaders to stay silent on.'

Collaborate and listen: Bloc Québécois hopes to leverage minority Parliament dynamics to make mark

‘Now that it’s a minority government, they have to listen to everybody,’ says Bloc MP Rhéal Fortin, his party’s justice critic.

Tory leadership candidates champion CANZUK pact, but trade experts question idea’s merit

News|By Neil Moss
Canada already has a free trade agreement with Australia and New Zealand as part of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

‘Data, privacy, trade’: ministers tasked with AI file contending with fast, fundamental changes

News|By Mike Lapointe
But public servants say the social impact on workers is not being properly taken into account as the use of artificial intelligence in government advances.
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