Bill Advances for Truth and Healing Commission Regarding Abuse at Government-Run Residential Schools

A House committee gave preliminary approval Wednesday to a bill that would create a commission to investigate historic abuses at Indian boarding schools, despite Republican concerns about the commission’s scope and power.

Cronkite News Digest reports that the Truth and Healing Commission would investigate federal and mission boarding schools, which operated from the late 1800s to the 1900s.

The schools were widely seen as an attempt to erase Aboriginal society and culture from Aboriginal children, who were often abused and sometimes killed.

The commission will be tasked with uncovering historical records, documenting unmarked burial sites, investigating cases of abuse and making recommendations on how the federal government should respond.

Meanwhile, the U.S. military began exhuming the remains of eight Native American children who died at a government-run boarding school that operated in Pennsylvania between 1879 and 1918.

The exhumation process began last weekend at a cemetery on the grounds of the US Army War College in Carlisle.

Custody of the remains will be transferred to the children’s next of kin.

This is the fifth such process since 2017. More than 20 sets of remains have been transferred to family members in previous exhumations.

The Carlisle school housed thousands of First Nations children who were taken from their families and forced to assimilate into white society.

About Jefferey G. Cannon

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