Canadian residential school architect statue overthrown in Toronto Aboriginal rights news


The president of Toronto Ryerson University stated that after the protesters rally, the statue of an architect in the Canadian boarding school system has been torn down and will not be replaced. Tribute to 215 indigenous children Their remains were found in a former school.

Hundreds of people demonstrated in Toronto on Sunday Commemorate and demand justice The children found at the Kamloops Indian Boarding School in western British Columbia at the end of last month.

The statue of Egerton Ryerson was demolished and he helped create a system of boarding schools where more than 150,000 Aboriginal, Metis, and Inuit children were separated from their families and forced to attend church-run schools.

The boarding schools that opened from the 1870s to the 1990s were riddled with abuse, and it is believed that more than 4,000 indigenous children died there, in most cases from disease.

The demolition of this statue is a broader push to demolish the monument and rename the building in honor of the architect of the boarding school system [Chris Helgren/Reuters]

Ryerson University President and Vice President Mohamed Lachemi said in a statement that about an hour after the last group of protesters left, “a truck arrived… and began to overthrow Egerton Ryerson’s statue”.

“This statue will not be repaired or replaced,” Lakimi said.

When the statue collapsed, people called on the Canadian government and the Roman Catholic Church, which runs most of the boarding schools, to take concrete actions to deal with the continuing harm these institutions have caused to indigenous communities.

Over the years, students and professors at Ryerson University have been calling for the removal of the statue, joining a wider call from Canada and abroad to rename buildings and institutions—and Remove monument – Commemorate historical figures involved in the racist system, such as Slavery.

In late August 2020, the statue of John A Macdonald, Canada’s first prime minister, was removed from a plaza in downtown Montreal, and he played an important role in establishing a boarding school system.

Ryerson is a 19th-century figure who served as the director of education in Ontario.

According to a report Author: Ryerson University Indigenous Education Council (AEC), “Although [Ryerson] No implementation or supervision [residential] School, he contributed to their blueprint. “

The report cited a letter sent by Ryerson to the Department of Indian Affairs, in which he wrote of the indigenous students: “Without the help of religious feelings, there is no way to improve and improve his character and condition. This information must be added. To all other information to make the Indian a sober and hardworking person.”

Aboriginal students at Ryerson University said last month that they would start calling the school “University X” to “remove Ryerson’s name and the cultural symbol of genocide and intergenerational trauma.”

“For us, there is no dispute about reconciling Ryerson’s legacy. It doesn’t matter how many non-indigenous historians send letters of favor to Egerton. From the perspective of indigenous students, this is irreconcilable. “They wrote in a letter. Open the envelope May 11th.

At the same time, survivors of the Aboriginal communities and boarding schools are updating their Catholic Church apologizes Because of its role in the abuse of institutions.

On June 6, after the Egerton Ryerson statue was demolished by Ryerson University in Toronto, a man stepped on his head [Nick Lachance/Reuters]

Gerry Shingoose, a 63-year-old boarding school survivor, told Al Jazeera that in addition to Pope Francis’s apology, she also wanted to see the accusations against the abusers and asked the Catholic Church to publicly release all records about the boarding school.

“I am seeking justice for 215 children and children who have not yet been found. I am seeking justice for the survivors of the boarding school,” she said. “As survivors of boarding school, we share our stories over and over again-the Catholic Church has never recognized them or what they did to us in school.”

On Sunday, Pope Francis Expressing “pain” to the discovery Among the remains of 215 indigenous children in Kamloops, he did not provide the long-sought apology for boarding school survivors, their families and communities.





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