Schools commission to examine 'disappearances of children'
BILL CURRY AND JOE FRIESEN
Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20081027.wgraves28/EmailBNStory/National/home October 27, 2008 at 8:01 PM EDT
OTTAWA and TORONTO — The commission examining Indian residential schools is launching a massive new research project to find out who is buried on school grounds and what happened to the young aboriginal boys and girls who left for boarding schools and never returned home.
Kimberly Phillips, a spokesperson for Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission, said the expanded research has been approved by Claudette Dumont-Smith, one of the commissioners. The “Missing Children Research Project,” as it has been named, will include “an examination of the number and cause of deaths, illnesses and disappearances of children at the residential schools as well as the location of burial sites,” Ms. Phillips said. Ms. Phillips said researchers will go through all relevant church and federal government records to find information that will help families looking for lost children. They will also prepare a questionnaire, and encourage former students and people who worked at the schools to come forward with their stories. According to a commission document obtained by The Globe and Mail, one option involves “visiting residential school sites where graves of Missing Children are located or the cemeteries near the schools where Missing Children have been buried.” Tuberculosis was the most common reason cited for deaths at schools across the country, however, survivors have said that rumours have circulated over the years that some of the forgotten children died of neglect, abuse or even murder. Read more ...