Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Real reconciliation

  • Print

Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, tasked with establishing a research centre to hold all documents and materials it collects on Indian residential schools, has been given a year's extension to its mandate. It will work into the summer of 2015 to gather and analyze the documents the federal government was ordered by a court to provide. The material should be transferred without further delay.

The extension is the predictable result of a lengthy dispute over what documents are relevant and how they would be provided. In January, an Ontario court said not all documents that mention residential schools are necessary, but Ottawa must compile all material that is reasonably required to lay out the history and legacy of the schools. The government had argued it was obliged merely to open the doors of Library and Archives Canada to commission researchers.

But the scope of the job before government employees involved in identifying and compiling the volume of material -- Library and Archives Canada estimated at one point this envelope 29 departments and amass 69,000 boxes at an estimated cost of $40 million -- remains unclear. Indeed, following a report last spring by the Auditor General into the dispute, the commission noted it hoped it would not have to yet again return to court to settle the unresolved issues.

The commission began its work in 2009, but Ottawa knew of its obligation to provide the documents in 2006. Yet it was not until 2011 the work within federal departments to begin managing the task began.

The commission is writing the tale of a painful era of Canada's history in an attempt to heal a festering wound that arose from a policy that damaged First Nations and Canada's relationship with its original people. The federal government cannot stint in fulfilling its critical role in that process. After deadlines have passed, true reconciliation will compel Ottawa to disclose to the commission's national research centre at the University of Manitoba any new materials whenever they are discovered.

Editorials are the consensus view of the Winnipeg Free Press’ editorial board, comprising Catherine Mitchell, David O’Brien, Shannon Sampert, and Paul Samyn.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition November 25, 2013 A8

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

ALS Ice Bucket Weather Challenge by Doug Speirs

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Two Canadian geese perch themselves for a perfect view looking at the surroundings from the top of a railway bridge near Lombard Ave and Waterfront Drive in downtown Winnipeg- Standup photo- May 01, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A young gosling flaps his wings after taking a bath in the duck pond at St Vital Park Tuesday morning- - Day 21– June 12, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Did you suffer any damages from Thursday's storm?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google