Federal Court of Canada approved the Gottfriedson settlement agreement for former Day Scholars at Indian Residential Schools


Ottawa, Ontario (October 1, 2021) — The Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations, Carolyn Bennett, issued the following statement today:

"The mistreatment of Indigenous children is a tragic and shameful part of Canada's history, the impacts of which are still being felt today. The Government of Canada is deeply committed to advancing reconciliation and healing for former Indian Residential School Day Scholars and their descendants.

On Friday, September 24, 2021, the Federal Court approved the Indian Residential Schools Day Scholars (Gottfriedson) Settlement Agreement. The Court ruled that the agreement is fair, reasonable and in the best interests of the Survivor and Descendant class members.

Canada is pleased with this important step forward on the journey of reconciliation and healing with Indigenous Peoples. We are proud of the work we have accomplished together with Survivors and their counsel toward a lasting and meaningful resolution for the thousands of Day Scholars who suffered harm while attending an Indian Residential School.

The settlement agreement combines individual compensation of $10,000 for harms experienced in attending an Indian Residential School as a Day Scholar with forward-looking investments to support healing, wellness, education, language, culture, heritage and commemoration for Survivors and Descendants.

To ensure that the aging survivors receive compensation in their lifetime, the parties have agreed to separate the Band Class claims in order to focus on the settlement of the Survivor and Descendant classes.

The parties to the settlement will continue to work collaboratively toward implementing the settlement following the 60-day appeal period.

As the process going forward can have a re-traumatizing effect, Canada has health supports in place for Survivors and their families. The Hope for Wellness Help Line offers immediate access to experienced and culturally competent Help Line counsellors to all Indigenous Peoples across Canada. Counsellors can help those who want to talk, who are in distress, who are having a strong emotional reaction or who are triggered by painful memories. The Hope for Wellness Help Line offers counselling and crisis intervention and is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1-855-242-3310 or by connecting to the online chat at hopeforwellness.ca.

The advocacy, perseverance and commitment of former Indian Residential Schools Day Scholars to address past wrongs will not be forgotten."


For more information, media may contact:

Ani Dergalstanian
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

Media Relations
Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

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