When Lynn Beyak recently suggested “some good” came out of Canada’s residential schools, the Conservative Senator touched off a firestorm that prompted her removal from the Senate’s committee on Aboriginal Peoples late Wednesday.
Shortly after Ms. Beyak made her comments challenging the verity of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and Indian Residential School Survivors’ experiences, I started a petition demanding the resignation or dismissal of Ms. Beyak from Canada’s Senate.
The petition has been sponsored by MP Romeo Saganash, who himself is an Indian Residential School Survivor.
Senator Beyak’s now famous comments suggested the “good deeds” of “well-intentioned men and women” in Residential Schools have gone “unacknowledged for the most part and are overshadowed by negative reports.”
This view is at odds with the findings of the TRC that spent six years examining the abuse and mistreatment in the government-funded, church-run institutions that operated from 1870 to 1996.
Because Ms. Beyak continues to stand by her comments, this petition is calling for her resignation. It reads:
Petition to the Government of Canada
Senator Lynn Beyak’s comments against the verity of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) stating that Indian Residential Schools had “kindly and well-intentioned men and women…whose remarkable work, good deeds and historical tales in the Residential Schools go unnoticed” are an affront to all the work that the TRC undertook under the leadership of Senator Murray Sinclair while he was the Chair of the TRC;
Her comments epitomize the privileged position that she occupies;
She has said she “suffered with them up there. I appreciate their suffering more than they’ll ever know” and “The best way to heal is to move forward together. Not to blame, not to point fingers, not to live in the past.” and these comments are detrimental to First Nations, Inuit, and Metis Residential School Survivors, their families and all Canadians;
The last Indian Residential School just closed in 1996 and families across this country are still feeling the effects from them and are very much suffering; and
She has a lack of respect for the over 150,000 First Nation, Inuit and Metis children who were forcibly ripped from their homes and communities for over 150 years. Over 6000 of these children never left these schools as they died in them.
We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to request for the resignation or dismissal of Conservative Senator Lynn Beyak due to her lack of empathy for all Indian Residential School Survivors, their families, and all Canadians.