Greg Clark's statement on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report
Posted on June 02, 2015 by Meagan Wade
The release of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission report is a chance for all Canadians to join together and fully support Aboriginal Communities in Alberta and Canada. I agree with the findings of this report. Our country participated in a cultural genocide against First Nations. By acknowledging this painful truth, the healing process can begin.
The release of this report is not the end. It allows the healing process to begin. It is the first step of for all Canadians to learn about the horrible injustices of the past, to learn about what happened, to understand what happened and why.
The reconciliation must continue but it needs to be done as a partnership, working together with aboriginal communities.
We cannot let this report like many others before it gather dust on a shelf and we cannot afford to do nothing.
We need to ensure the necessary resources are in place to continue the healing process. This is a generational process, the children who are now adults who continue to try and deal with what happened, their children, their grandchildren.
We must focus on breaking the cycle of poverty and addiction. We must work together to help First Nations people develop parenting skills they were denied because of residential schools. Funding for drug and alcohol addiction facilities and outreach programs must be increased simply to try and help the sheer number of people who have been affected by this tragedy. Mental health programs must be expanded to meet the needs of people. And in all cases treatment programs must be culturally appropriate.
There are still thousands of people who have not been able to come forward to tell their story because it was too difficult and brought back painful memories. We need to ensure that those people are given an avenue when they are ready to start their healing journey.
It is our moral obligation to work together to heal the injustices of the past, and to ensure a healthy future for First Nations people.