'Reconciliation demands honesty and transparency,' says chief of B.C. First Nation

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KAMLOOPS, B.C. — The chief of British Columbia's Tk'emlups te Secwepemc First Nation says Indigenous people have had enough apologies and now want action from the Catholic Church and federal government because reconciliation demands honesty, truth and transparency.

On the country's first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, Chief Rosanne Casimir called for the disclosure of all relevant records from the church and government to help identify missing Indigenous children at former residential school sites, including those in unmarked graves.

Casimir says they want a "meaningful apology" from the Pope for the trauma to Indigenous children and intergenerational suffering.

Tk'emlups te Secwepemc announced in May it used ground-penetrating radar in the discovery of the remains of more than 200 children long believed missing from the residential school that operated there between 1890 and 1969.

Casimir says less than a hectare of land was searched around the site of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School and about 65 more hectares still need to be explored.

Since then, other Indigenous nations have announced the discovery of unmarked graves using similar search methods around former residential schools.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 30, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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