Canada school survivor: ‘We experienced all levels of abuse’

Government-run boarding schools in Canada were part of a policy to attempt to assimilate Indigenous children and destroy Indigenous cultures and languages.

News of the remains of 215 children found at one such institution has brought new attention to their lasting impact.

Canada issued a formal apology to the former students of residential schools in 2008, calling them a “sad chapter in our history”.

The Catholic church, which ran many of the schools, has not directly apologised.

But in an address on Sunday, Pope Francis said that he was pained by the discovery of the remains and urged Canadian political and religious leaders to “cooperate with determination” to shed light on the finding and seek reconciliation and healing.

Residential school survivor Geraldine Lee Shingoose spoke to the BBC about the abuse she experienced as a child at an institution in Saskatchewan – and what’s needed for reconciliation.

Video by Dan Lytwyn


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