First Nations: Did some of your members go to residential school?

Children & Youth | Remedies

First Nations: Did some of your members go to residential school?

If yes, there is a class action underway now that may apply to you, as a First Nation. This class action is asking for a decision from your First Nation by the end this month – that’s right, by May 31, 2022.

Currently many First Nations are busy assisting their members with the Day Schools settlement, which survivors can apply to up to July 13th, 2022 (possibly a few months beyond if an extension request is granted). There is also attention to the new $20B settlement on child & family services, which is not yet open for applications.

Meanwhile, OKT is involved in a settlement on drinking water on reserve. We have been busy reaching out to both individuals and First Nations, to try to ensure everyone eligible understands their rights and can participate if they choose to. You can also visit OKT’s page.

With all this going on, you may have missed the news about the Day Scholars case and their Band Class. Day Scholars?

One part of the Day Scholars claim applies to individuals who attended an Indian Residential School during the day, but came home at night. A settlement was reached for compensation to these individual survivors. These survivors have until October 2023 to apply. If you are a survivor or are unsure if you qualify, you can find more info here. Because the deadline is not until 2023, that part is not urgent.

However there is a second part of this case which is for First Nations themselves. This part of the case is quite different. It is much broader, because it applies to any First Nation that either:

  • had members who attended residential school – whether overnight or during the day, or
  • had a residential school located on its reserve.

Here is the list of eligible residential schools for this case. It comes from the original 2006 settlement on Indian Residential Schools.

For First Nations, there is an opt-in deadline of May 31, 2022 – just a few weeks away.

Over 100 First Nations have opted in, but many more are likely eligible. We recommend that First Nations take a look at this soon, to make an informed decision by end of May.

More information is available here: https://www.justicefordayscholars.com/band-class/

The contact person is : Cory Wanless, (647) 261-4486, cory@waddellphillips.ca 

Please note that OKT is not involved in the Day Scholars case. This blog is for information only.

 

Judith Rae is an partner at OKT who brings a social work background to her legal practice. She is committed advancing Indigenous peoples’ goals in governance, child welfare, education, and many other issues.

jrae@oktlaw.com

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