Abdul Mohammed – Tamanawis Secondary

Submitted By: Abdul Mohammed

Dear Stephen Harper,
I have recently learned of the cruel treatment that was subjected onto the children of the Sto: Lo nation. They were taken from their families and put in resedential schools where they were stripped of their language, cultures, and beleifs. This was called ” taking the indian out of the child ”. What really disgusts me however is how these children were treated and the poor conditions they had to live in. I can’t believe that my government played a part in this unhamane event. Words can not describe the anger and disgust I felt while watching the video describing what these children had to put up with from the very government that is supposed to protect and help us. These children were sexually abused, beaten, and even killed. Killed for what? It’s for something as simple as speaking your native language. Lets put it this way, imaging you are put in a school where you are told to speak chinese. Now, the only language you can speak is English but that’s not what they want you to be speaking, so you are beat if you are ever heard of speaking any word in english. What do you think Mr. Harper? Would you want your children to be subjected to this? I’m sure you would’nt so what makes it ok to do this to the children of the Sto: Lo nation. Now I understand that this happened in the past and there is nothing that can be done to change this but we can still help those children that have been permanently scarred from attending these schools. Not only were those children physically abused, they have also lost their Sto: Lo cultures and traditions as they were never taught them. I believe that to these people their traditions and culture means everything to them so we must put in place some sort of class which they can attend to learn all these traditions that they were never given the chance to learn. I am aware that their are reparations being made to the children that attended resedential schools but I feel that money can’t fix everything that happened. I call for more services to be provided, one of them being free counselling available to all resedential school survivors.
Thank you for reading this letter Mr. Stephen Harper and I really hope that you will not only read it but also act upon some of these suggestions I have put forth.

Abdul, Dylan

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