Travels

Canada apologizes to the Indians

The other day the Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, apologized to the original inhabitants of the country before the Parliament in Ottawa for decades of abuse. The politician said that it had been a mistake to take the children of these inhabitants from their families and communities to take away their culture and traditions in special internships.

The forced accommodation of children in institutes also enabled abuse. Harper referred to a "Sad chapter" in the history of the country and apologized to the victims. “Today we see that the assimilation policy was wrong, that it generated great suffering and that it has no place in our country”, Harper said in the presence of representatives of the original inhabitants.

He added that the effects had been absolutely negative and had caused lasting damage to the culture, heritage and language of the original inhabitants. “In the name of the Canadian government and of all Canadians, I find myself in front of you to apologize for the role of the Canadian state in the internship system for Indians”said Harper. He indicated that today you could verify that the forced separation of parents impaired the ability of many of these children to later assume the role of parents. This caused damage to the following generations.

Between 1870 and 1970, children of the original inhabitants of Canada were necessarily assimilated into homes managed in general by the Church. Many were mistreated or sexually abused. Of the around 150.00 children who went through these state-sponsored schools, they still live around 8. In 2006 the government in Ottawa had already paid compensation to victims of these physical, psychic and sexual abuse.

In February, the Australian government apologized for similar abuses against Aboriginal children. Unlike Canada, Australia refuses to pay compensation.

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