Truth and Reconciliation
Commission of Canada (TRC)
Scope is primarily centred upon the mistreatment of
children. Its focus of research spans more than 150 years.
A government apology and reparations for harms inflicted
preceded the work of the TRC.
To lay the foundation for reconciliation, the TRC will help
educate Canadians on the importance of this history,
understand how we arrived at this moment in time and how
we can move together into the future.
It is the first court-ordered truth commission of its kind
established and as such, the court plays an ongoing role in
overseeing the process.
Indian Residential Schools
are a part of Canada’s shared
history – a history not well
understood by many.
From the 1870’s – 1990’s,
as many as 150,000 First
Nations, Métis and Inuit
children were separated
from families and placed in
Indian Residential School,
Residential Schools Map
As many as 130 schools operated across Canada.
The last one closed in the mid-90’s.
The Honourable Justice Murray Sinclair,
Marie Wilson and Chief Wilton Littlechild
Lottie May Johnson, Gordon Williams, Madeleine Basile,
Barney Williams, Terri Brown, Rebekah Uqi Williams,
Doris Young, Eugene Arcand, John Morriseau and
The TRC is gathering statements from former
students, teachers, church and government
officials of Residential Schools. Gathering
statements from the elderly or at-risk is a priority.
Nearly 1000 statements received to date. SG
initiatives across the country are just beginning.
Statements will remain in the National Research
Centre and made available to the public subject to
privacy laws. It will house one of the largest
collections of oral history in Canada.
There are many different meanings of what
reconciliation is and how it can be achieved.
Some examples are:
• apology by Prime Minister
• apology and healing initiatives by churches
• commemoration - IRS scholarship - U of Winnipeg
• individual acts of forgiveness - former teacher and
It can be influenced by one’s experiences and a
people’s distinct culture, history and language.
The TRC encourages you to consider:
• what reconciliation may look like-
• Acts or gestures that demonstrate the thought or
meaning of reconciliation;
• Meaning for young women and girls in Canada;
• Connection with the epidemic of missing and murdered
Aboriginal women ($10 million just announced over two
years- possible funding for activities);
• your role as a member of the Girls Action Foundation;
collectively and individually.
Five Year Mandate
The Commission will:
Create an accurate and public historical record of
the past regarding:
• the policies and operations of former residential schools;
• who attended the schools;
• what happened to the children;
• and what former employees recall from their experiences.
Complete a public report that will include
recommendations to all parties of the Settlement
Agreement concerning the Residential Schools
Establish a National Research Centre that will be a
permanent resource for all Canadians.
Host seven national gatherings in regions across
Canada to promote awareness and public
education about the Residential School legacy and
Support a Commemoration Initiative that will fund
projects that pay tribute to survivors.
Support community events designed by
communities to meet their unique needs.
Guide and inspire Aboriginal peoples and
Canadians in a process of truth and healing that
will lead toward reconciliation and renewed
Statement Gathering occurs in a safe, respectful
environment that recognizes ones culture, dignity
and personal privacy.
Health supports are available to all participants.
All statements are voluntary and require informed
consent of individuals.
Statement Gathering (cont’d)
If you or someone you know wishes to share an experience or
perspective about Residential Schools or reconciliation,
• record your statement - audio, video or written - send it to the
• ask us to help you record your statement.
• send us your artistic expression – songs, poetry, dance, art,
• Attend public forums (e.g. National and Community Events)
where statement takers are available for private one-on-one
interviews, as well as more public sharing circles.
• contact the TRC to make arrangements with the Statement
Winnipeg, MB - June 16 -19, 2010
• 40,000 people participated and shared their experiences.
First NE drew an overwhelming response and provided a
tremendous opportunity for healing between individuals
Inuvik, NWT - June 28 - July 1, 2011
• Planning is underway with stakeholders and local,
regional organizations. A northern tour of Community
Events leading up to the 2nd
NE is being planned.
Dates and venues to be announced for events in:
• Halifax, NS, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan,
Quebec and final closing event in Ottawa, Ontario.
Community Events offer another way for people to
contribute to and be part of the TRC process.
Communities have a chance to:
• offer gestures of reconciliation
• showcase how they have begun the process of
• involve churches, former employees and government
officials as well educate the public and foster better
relationships among local communities.
Events can take any form, as long as they reflect
the wishes of community members, making each
A Community Events Guideline and application
form is available at www.trc.ca.
$20M provided for
commemorative initiatives that
honour IRS survivors and pay
$10M of the funding will be
available April 2011.
Once in place, the TRC will
receive and evaluate proposals
for commemorative initiatives;
Indian and Northern Affairs
Canada will administer the
The Commission will issue an interim report of the
Residential School system at the two-year point of
A final report developed will examine:
• the history and legacy of the school system;
• the work of the Commission;
• provide guidance for an ongoing process of reconciliation.
A conference on the National Research Centre is
planned for March 2011 that will bring together
Missing Children &
The TRC has agreed to support the Missing
Children Research Project, including:
• examination of the number and cause of deaths, illnesses,
disappearances of children.
• location of burial sites - the TRC plans to carry out a project
that will identify and locate cemeteries and grave sites
associated with each Residential School.
• review of all relevant church and government records, as
well as information provided by survivors, staff, or anyone
What You Can Do
• Spread the word among your family, friends, neighbors
and networks about the TRC.
• Share your truth.
• Offer gestures of reconciliation.
• Provide artistic expressions.
• Attend TRC National Events.
• Organize a Community Event.
• Conduct Research.
• Visit TRC website often www.trc.ca.
• Follow us on Twitter
• Become a fan on Facebook
• Send us your thoughts and ideas.
How to Contact TRC
Mail: Truth and Reconciliation
Commission of Canada
1500 - 360 Main Street
Winnipeg, MB. R3C 3Z3
Voices of Survivors
What you are about to witness is disturbing.
The video you are about to see tells the courageous,
stories of four residential school survivors, along
with their grandchildren.
They have all agreed to share their personal stories
with the TRC and the public so that we might come to
better understand what happened.
If you feel you need help, please talk to an available
health support or call the Residential School crisis
line at 1-866-925-4419.