Mourning the children of Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation
The Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council’s thoughts are with the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc community, and all Indigenous communities, and we join in this time of collective mourning for the heartbreaking loss of their children.
We acknowledge that the discovery of the remains of 215 Indigenous children on the grounds of a former residential school in Kamloops, British Columbia unearths more truths; the hard evidence that these innocent lives were lost at a result of colonialism, and anti-Indigenous racism and oppression. And so, while we mourn, we also stop to listen to those with lived and living experience and deeply reflect on how we as an organization can continue to practice allyship.
As part of WRSPC’s commitment to anti-racism and equity we are actively engaging in education for our staff through The Antiracism Course, and this summer we will begin undertaking an oppression audit of our website, policies and by-laws. This commitment, and the understanding that we as an organization can do better, is another small step in our journey forward.
For anyone requiring emotional assistance, please access support resources:
– 24/7 National Indian Residential School Crisis line: 1-866-925-4419
– Indian Residential School Survivors Society BC: 1-800-721-0066
– Talk 4 Healing line for Indigenous Women: 1-855-554-Heal(4985)
– Hope for Wellness help line (24/7): 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat at hopeforwellness.ca
– Kids Help Phone: text WELLNESS to 686868
– Here 24/7 (Waterloo Wellington): 1-844-437-3247
For further learning:
To increase your capacity as an individual for allyship, consider how you could learn about the past and present context of anti-Indigenous racism and oppression in Canada. The following link is a free course available from the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta and explores Indigenous histories and contemporary issues in Canada: