Reconciliation For First Nations Living In Canada History Essay

1284 words - 6 pages

The First Nations people were supposedly the first people living in Canada,
meaning they have been here for many years. According to a 2016 census there
are around 1.67 million people in Canada who identify as First Nation, which
means 4.9% of the Canadian population is First Nation. The population lives in a 1
variety of types of communities throughout Canada. Almost half of these First
Nations people live off reserve; the others live on reserve. In the past there were
many times when First Nations peoples were treated horribly and even to this day
there is still times when things have not been done right. Along with thinking about
present day conditions, the contemporary world also needs to first learn about the
past before spreading awareness in public and teaching our youth in the spirit of
reconciliation.
To understand what can be done in the spirit of reconciliation, we must
understand the different events that have gone on in the past and some that are still
to this day happening. One of the main things to learn about is residential schools.
What First Nations imagined residential schools to be like and how they actually
were, are two different things. At these residential schools, First Nations kids were
taken away from their families and stripped of their human rights. For example,
Government of Canada; Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada; Communications Branch. "First 1
Nations." Government of Canada; Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada;
Communications Branch.
they were not allowed to practice their religion or speak their mother tongue. “The
ongoing impact of residential schools has been felt throughout generations and
contributed to social problems that continue to exist.” The last residential school 2
closed in 1996 and many formal apologies were given by the different prime
ministers, to the First Nations peoples. Along with the residential schools there
have been many issues on reserves. In Canada, in 2011 there were approximately
360,620 First Nations reserves. The conditions on reserves are horrible. “We rank 3
no better than a third world country. There is no good reason why our people
should be as poor as they are.” An example of a reserve would be Attawapiskat. 4
The living conditions are extremely horrible here. There is no proper food or safe
drinking water. The last thing that should be learned about is First Nations right to
self-governance. In the Royal Proclamation of 1763, King George the third, of
England stated that First Nations will get half of their land. This proclamation was
never revoked and should still be valid today. “In the Deigmuukw case (1997) the
court declined to deal with the self-governance issue” . The issue of Self-5
governance was ignored in the past and still being ignored in present day. Self-
government agreements give First Nation groups greater control of decision
Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC), "Residential Schools."2
Harvey A McCue, “Reserves." The Canadian...

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