Indian Residential School Settlement Update April 5, 2007
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS
More information can be found on the AFN’s website at www.afn.ca
The Indian Residential School Settlement Agreement is in the Final stages of approval!
Judges in nine court jurisdictions have decided the Indian Residential School Settlement Agreement (IRSSA) will proceed through its final stages of approval.
A mandatory 150 day opt out period was officially launched on March 20, 2007 and ends on August 20, 2007. During this 150 opt out day period, former students and their families must decide whether they stay in the settlement or remove themselves (opt out). It is estimated that there are 80,000 people alive today who may be included under the settlement agreement.
Official Court Notification documents for the IRSSA will begin to be mailed out to former students at the end of April 2007. Newspaper, Radio and TV Announcements will also appear in many regions across the country. All of these announcements will contain the information former students need in order to make informed decisions.Beginning on April 11, 2007 through to August 20, 2007, Regional Coordinators from the AFN will be scheduling community information sessions in all 633 First Nation communities and urban centers across Canada. These sessions will include a detailed presentation on the IRSSA to explain the details and the benefits of the settlement agreement and the legal rights of former Indian Residential school students and their families.
Should the IRSSA be approved by former students and their families, after August 20, 2007, more information will be available on how to submit applications for the Common Experience Payment. All other components of the IRSSA would then begin towards implementation including the Independent Assessment Process, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Healing and Commemoration.
As mentioned above, former students will begin to receive the necessary information in the mail very soon. We thank you for your patience.
The National Chief has stated that this is a fair and timely settlement agreement and supports the finalization of the Agreement. The National Chief acknowledges that individuals have the right to make their own decision in this matter.