A Reconciliation Pole by Haida master carver James Hart was installed and raised at the University of British Columbia (UBC) on traditional, ancestral and un-ceded land of the Musqueam people on April 01, 2017. This event becomes a significant milestone as the country celebrates Canada 150 or the 150th year of the Canadian Confederation in 2017. Canada 150 (1867-2017).
A Haida potlatch (First Nations ceremony) took place as a ceremony to commemorate the thousands of young aboriginal children forcefully taken from their homes and sent to the Indian residential schools to ‘normalize’ them so that when they grew up, the children would fit into the larger white society. These children were forbidden to speak their native languages, practice their custom and basically stripped of their aboriginal identity. About 6,000 of these children died as a direct result of the different kinds of abuse by those who taught and operated the schools. This incident is widely seen as the Holocaust of the First Nations or native people of Canada. There are many who survived the ordeal but have to live with the horrific memory.