Canada | Opinion

Chelsea Vowel: Adoption as annihilation of Native cultures

"If you’ve heard the term 60s scoop and thought it had something to do with ice-cream in ye olden days, I’m here to enlighten you. I prefer the term stolen generations, because the scooping I’m about to discuss didn’t end in the ’60s, and arguably still goes on today.

I am referring to the wholesale removal of aboriginal children from their families.

In the mid ’60s, the federal and provincial governments collaborated to provide child welfare coverage in First Nations communities. Before this, no real system was in place for First Nations people.

The similarity to tactics used during the height of the residential school system is eerie. Aboriginal children were taken en masse from their families and adopted out into non-Native families:

Child welfare workers removed Aboriginal children from their families and communities because they felt the best homes for the children were not Aboriginal homes. The ideal home would instill the values and lifestyles with which the child welfare workers themselves were familiar: white, middle-class homes in white, middle-class neighbourhoods. Aboriginal communities and Aboriginal parents and families were deemed to be “unfit.”"

Get the Story:
Chelsea Vowel: Adoption as Cultural Annihilation (Indian Country Today 4/5)

Join the Conversation