May we never forget. May we learn. May we do better.
On Friday, May 28 2021, all of Canada learned the devastating news that the remains of 215 Indigenous children were discovered in Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc near Kamloops, British Columbia. Their remains were found on the grounds of what was once Canada’s largest Indian Residential School. The heart-breaking news brings back the painful reminders of a time in history that requires everyone’s knowledge and respect to fully understand the grief and loss being felt by Indigenous people across Canada.
Prairie Mountain Health acknowledges that for a time in history there were five Indian Residential Schools in the geographical mapping of this health region. If one can imagine the significance of that one fact, we can begin to understand how this tragic event is affecting Indigenous people that we know and work with.
On behalf of Prairie Mountain Health, we extend our deepest sympathy and express sorrow during this difficult time.
Prairie Mountain Health encourages all who deliver health services on the original lands of First Nations people, and on the homeland of Métis citizens to recognize the ongoing obligation to deliver culturally safe care. As an organization, let us embrace the distinct cultural knowledge, practices and traditions of Indigenous Peoples and continued efforts to strengthen relationships with the Indigenous communities and peoples who we serve.
National and Regional Support Services
The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line provides support for former students and others affected.
Crisis referral services can be accessed by calling the 24-hour national crisis line: 1-866-925-4419
Hope for Wellness, set up in 2018 by the federal government, offers immediate mental health counselling and crisis intervention to Indigenous people across Canada.
Online chat is available in English and French by visiting their website: https://www.hopeforwellness.ca
Or by phone in English, French, Cree, Ojibway, and Inuktitut at: 1-855-242-3310
Talk 4 Healing line at 1-855-554-HEAL, or text WELLNESS to 741741 at any time.
Indian Residential Schools Resolution Health Support Program Phone toll free: 1-866-818-3505