McMaster offers sincere condolences to Indigenous communities
It is with tremendous sadness that we have learned of the discovery and further exploration of hundreds of unmarked graves of Indigenous children at the site of a former residential school in Saskatchewan.
This is another heartbreaking reminder for all of us to take stock of historic truths, and to offer our deepest sympathies and support to Indigenous communities.
Coming so soon after the horrific discovery of 215 children’s remains at the former Kamloops Residential School, and as we observe National Indigenous History Month, this is a moment to acknowledge how the legacies of these past actions along with present day forms of systemic racism and colonialism persist, and to reinforce commitments to meaningfully address calls to action towards reconciliation within our educational institutions and in society.
The university flags will be lowered to half-mast beginning June 24, and will remain lowered until Monday July 5, in memory of the children who were sent to residential schools, for those who never returned and in honour of the families and communities experiencing this profound loss.
Community members seeking support can contact:
- Indigenous Wellness Counsellor, Indigenous Student Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) – for students
- Indigenous Students Health Sciences Office (email@example.com)
- Elder-in-Residence, Indigenous Student Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) – for students and employees
- Equity and Inclusion Office (email@example.com) – for students and employees
- Indian Residential School Survivors and Family Hotline, 1-866-925-4419
- Hope for Wellness Help Line, 1-855-242-3310 or connect to the online chat at hopeforwellness.ca
- Student Wellness Centre: firstname.lastname@example.org
Employees seeking support may also access support through the Employee & Family Assistance Program (EFAP):
- Contact Homewood Health through their website (www.homeweb.ca) or by phone toll-free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to book appointments, or access any EFAP service