Agreement-in-Principle reached to resolve Percival class action lawsuit
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January 3, 2023 — Ottawa, ON — Crown–Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada
Today, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, along with Reginald Percival and Kenneth Weistche, court-appointed representative plaintiffs, announced that an Agreement-in-Principle has been reached in the Federal Indian Boarding Homes (Percival) class action.
Over the past four years, the Government of Canada and counsel for the plaintiffs have been engaged in discussions to resolve this litigation in a fair, compassionate and respectful manner.
The signing of the Agreement-in-Principle marks a significant milestone for thousands of Indigenous people who suffered cultural loss and abuse while residing in a boarding home placement overseen by the federal government for the purpose of attending school from September 1, 1951, to June 30, 1992.
The Agreement-in-Principle combines individual compensation for having been placed in a boarding home and compensation for incidents of physical and sexual or other abuse with forward-looking investments to support commemoration, healing, language and culture.
The Parties will continue to work together to reach a final settlement agreement in order to seek approval from the Federal Court of Canada. This process will unfold over the course of 2023, and more information will be forthcoming.
"I was taken from my family and community in 1968 when I was 13 years old. The impact on me, and on other kids like me, was devastating. I have spent decades since then, working to heal, to help others, and to explain to the broader community what happened. It has been a long journey but I am gratified by the steps we are now taking, as a country, to acknowledge past wrongs and to move forward together."
Court-appointed representative plaintiff
"I was in a boarding home after I was in Indian residential school. This has always been a missing part of the process. It is like a cut with a bandage, but half the cut is not covered, and that half is the boarding home experience. We never dealt with the whole experience. I am really pleased that we reached this agreement."
Court-appointed representative plaintiff for the Quebec sub-group
"This Agreement-in-Principle is a milestone for thousands of Indigenous Peoples who suffered abuse while residing in a boarding home placement overseen by the federal government between 1951 and 1992. Canada will continue to work with the plaintiffs towards a final settlement agreement and approval of the Federal Court in 2023."
The Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations
Beginning in the 1950s, approximately 40,000 Indigenous children were part of a boarding home placement for the purpose of attending school. A significant number of these placements were overseen by the federal government until program delivery slowly devolved to Indigenous control.
Key elements of the Agreement-in-Principle include:
- Individual compensation of $10,000 to recognize the losses caused by placement in a boarding home by Canada for the purpose of attending school from September 1, 1951, to June 30, 1992;
- Compensation, ranging from $10,000 to $200,000, for incidents of physical and sexual or other abuse while residing in a boarding home placement based on severity of the abuses suffered;
- $50 million will be invested to support the commemoration, healing, language, and culture;
- Funding to support class members who require assistance from legal counsel and other forms of support on their abuse claims.
For more information, media may contact:
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Crown–Indigenous Relations
CIRNAC Media Relations:
Class Counsel for representative plaintiff Reginald Percival:
Quebec Counsel for Quebec representative plaintiff Kenneth Weistche:
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