On Thursday, Chief Rosanne Casimir of the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation confirmed that the bodies of 215 Indigenous children were discovered in an unmarked mass grave at a former residential school in Kamloops, BC. This is one more piece of already overwhelming evidence of the colonial genocide of our nation toward Indigenous peoples. WLUFA is also cognizant of the fact that the Canadian education system has a history of imposing biased values, pain, and inequity upon Indigenous peoples.
WLUFA calls on all members, and the Wilfrid Laurier Administration, to commit to reconciliation, including learning more about colonial-state violence, taking the time to read the 94 recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), and actively working to implement them in our own teaching, research, and service. We should not just move on with our lives once the headlines die down. We are responsible to the memories of those children for making real change.
As such, WLUFA is committed to working with Laurier’s Indigenous Initiatives to make Laurier a safer space for all Indigenous students, staff, and faculty and pledges to continuously engage with the processes of reconciliation, decolonization and helping to create space for Laurier’s Indigenous community members to create an environment where Indigenous worldviews are able to flourish.
WLUFA is here to support all of its members. Please reach out to us.
Important Resources and Further Reading:
Truth and Reconciliation Commission Final Report:
Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action:
Indigenizing at Laurier
CAUT policy on Indigenizing the Academy:
Tuck & Yang: Decolonization is not a Metaphor
Pete: 100 ways to Indigenize and decolonize academic programs and courses