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2022 World Press Photo Contest: Kamloops Residential School

April 8, 2022

Toronto Star: Amber Bracken is the 2022 World Press Photo global winner for a stunning photo she captured near Kamloops, B.C. last summer.

The jarring photo features red dresses hanging from wooden crosses, against a stormy skyline with the golden sun shining on the crosses and a rainbow in the distance. She was there following the horrifying discovery of the graves of 215 unidentified Indigenous chidreng who attended the Kamloops Indian Residential School. Established in 1890, the school was attended by hundreds of Secwépemc and other First Nations children.

Amber took this image while on assignment for the new York Times, beating out 4,066 photographs across 130 countries in the World Press Photo contest. She was most excited about the global exposure the win would bring to the genocide of Indigenous children. Because these crimes against humanity have barely made world news, this win is huge.

Just last November, she was arrested while embedded with land defenders battling Coastal GasLink Pipeline in Wet’suwet’en territories. She was thrown in jail for four days.