The remains of 215 children found at the Kamloops Residential School in British Columbia is a heinous reminder of the genocide against Indigenous peoples in Canada and adds to the more than 4,100 identified children who died due to the abhorrent residential school system.
Pride Toronto condemns this tragedy and asks everyone to take a moment of remembrance with pause, and consider finding actions of solidarity to support Indigenous peoples in Canada. We are urging your Pride flags to fly at half-mast in mourning with Two-Spirit community members this Pride season.
This horrific news adds to the urgency in which we collectively must act to fulfill the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. We at Pride Toronto, along with all levels of government, community members, and settlers, must address the part we play in Indigenous histories, and take immediate action in partnership with Indigenous leaders and communities to address the current issues including, but not limited to, youth mental health, overrepresentation of Indigenous people in the correctional system, and the lack of fresh drinking water, housing, and healthcare.
We can no longer sit idly by and ignore these atrocities, which contributes significantly to intergenerational trauma that affects so many today.
And most importantly, to Two-Spirit community members and Indigenous communities at large, our hearts are aching, we are grieving, and we are committed to honouring the memories of these 215 children with you.