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Judge hears dispute over fate of residential school documents

Filed Under: Canada | Education | Law
More on: abuse, ontario, residential schools

A residential school in Saskatchewan. Circa 1906. Photo by John Woodruff

A judge in Ontario heard two days of arguments over the fate of documents submitted by residential school survivors.

As part of the Independent Assessment Process, residential school survivors submitted testimony and documents about the physical, mental and sexual abuse they suffered. Chief adjudicator Dan Shapiro says the information should be kept confidential.

"It would be a betrayal of trust again," Shapiro's lawyer, Will McDowell, told the judge, the Canadian Press reported.

But the National Research Centre for Truth and Reconciliation wants to take possession of the records and see if any survivors want to share their stories. That process could fold out over the next 30 years, an attorney said.

"The minute you destroy the information, you alter the ability for generations to come to remind people of what was done to these victims," attorney Julian Falconer told the court.

It is not known when the judge will issue a decision.

Get the Story:
Destroying sensitive Indian school survivor accounts 'irreversible,' court told (CP 7/16)
Fate of survivors' documents in hands of Ontario court (The Saskatoon StarPhoenix 7/17)

Related Stories:
Court to hear dispute over residential school documents in July (06/19)
Residential school survivors want testimony kept confidential (05/15)

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