Call to Action # 72

We call upon the federal government to allocate sufficient resources to the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation to allow it to develop and maintain the National Residential School Student Death Register established by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

Why “In Progress?”

Nov. 9, 2022: Government of Canada announced funding of $28.5 million over five years for the NCTR including collecting, reviewing, and making accessible residential school records, and supporting community-led efforts to locate and identify unmarked burials. The funding will support numerous initiatives including the National Residential School Student Death Register, the online National Cemetery Register, and the National Advisory Committee on Missing Children and Unmarked Burials.

Oct. 19, 2021: Additionally missing are various Library and Archives Canada quality records and records from provincial governments, most of whom have not yet produced vital statistics, including death certificates for children lost at schools or coroners’ reports. The NCTR is also in negotiation with Canada concerning statistical records to be generated from the database which was used for claims resolution in the IAP.

Negotiations have been ongoing for records since the creation of the NCTR from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in 2015. This means Survivors and their families have been waiting for years and counting. At present, we are also still unable to access Indian Hospital records, federal health records, and day school records. All of these records are crucial not only to support missing children research, but to fully and truthfully document the residential school system, the children who died in the schools, and the ongoing legacy.

To truly commit to Reconciliation, the Government of Canada must work with the NCTR to make all records available and encourage provincial governments to do the same. The Government must also support delivery of all historical records as an opportunity to build partnership to fully understand the impact of residential schools.

Budget 2019 announced $33.8 million over 3 years starting in fiscal year 2019 to 2020 to develop and maintain the National Residential School Student Death Register and work with parties to establish and maintain an online registry of residential school cemeteries.

The federal government released $27M in unused funding from this budget allocation to assist communities in the search for additional graves. (C2A # 74, 75)

Current Status

In Progress

Call to Action
last updated

November 09, 2022

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