(Toronto, Ontario – January 18, 2023) Ontario Regional Chief Glen Hare issued the following statement on the preliminary findings on the grounds of the former St. Mary’s Indian Residential School in Kenora, Ontario:
“On behalf of the Chiefs in Ontario, our hearts are with the community of Wauzhushk Onigum Nation following their announcement of preliminary findings of ‘plausible burials’ detected in the search for unmarked graves at former St. Mary’s Indian Residential School in Kenora, Ontario,” said Ontario Regional Chief Glen Hare. “We mourn alongside Wauzhushk Onigum Nation and Survivors and families of those that attended St. Mary’s Indian Residential School.”
“These findings are a stark reminder of the dark history of residential schools. I acknowledge the courage and strength of Survivors for sharing their stories and testimonies throughout the investigation and the work and dedication of the Kaatagoging Survivors Group of the St. Mary’s Residential School Survivor Project in their search for healing and justice for Survivors and all the children taken from their families and communities.
I encourage all to keep the Survivors, families, and community of Wauzhushk Onigum Nation in your thoughts as they continue their investigation to uncover the truth on the grounds of St. Mary’s Indian Residential School.”
Ontario Regional Chief Glen Hare
If you are a residential school survivor, you are able to contact the 24-hour National Crisis Line at 1-866-925-4419 for support. First Nations can also access the Hope for Wellness Help Line at 1-855-242-3310 or online chat at www.hopeforwellness.ca.
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The Chiefs of Ontario supports all First Nations in Ontario as they assert their sovereignty, jurisdiction, and their chosen expression of nationhood. Follow Chiefs of Ontario on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram @ChiefsOfOntario.
Communications and Public Affairs Manager
Policy and Communications Sector
Chiefs of Ontario