This time of year people reflect on the past twelve months of highs and lows, milestones and obstacles. For many groups across the country, 2022 saw major steps forward in the search for Missing Children and Unmarked Graves and Burial Sites associated with Indian Residential Schools. Momentum is growing and as a result, horrific histories are being brought to light.
For some, this is the first time they’re hearing these histories. For others, this is rather a recognition of what they’ve always known. But both outcomes of this momentum are important because they are bringing Canadians together in search for the truth and for justice.
There are still many, many challenges in this work, including funding constraints, limited timelines, legislative barriers, institutional resistance, and an aging population of Survivors.
But I am encouraged.
I’m encouraged by the collaboration occurring across the country between Nations and allies. I am encouraged by the determination and perseverance of Elders who have been undertaking this work for decades without support. And I am encouraged by the quest for justice that has awoken in the public’s consciousness
Exposing these histories is changing attitudes and bringing accountability. Past outcomes are no longer strong indicators of the future. There is real hope for systematic change.
This work will take time. We may not uncover everything right away, but we can do our best to keep up the momentum and inspire the next generation to join us.
Let’s continue to work together and keep the momentum into 2023!
Senior Researcher at Narratives Inc.