The Vancouver School District acknowledges the tragic news about discovery of the remains of 215 children at the site of a former residential school in Kamloops. Hearing this news is devastating compounding the sad history and lasting negative impact of residential schools on Indigenous communities in Canada.
We extend our deepest condolences to Chief Rosanne Casimir of the Tk'emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation and community. We also offer condolences to all Indigenous staff, students, families and community members; our thoughts are with all of you.
Everyone at the District is committed to supporting students, staff and families impacted by this deeply troubling event. Supports for students and staff are available through counsellors and the District critical incident team are available to assist as needed.
As a symbol of our collective grief, all flags at schools and District sites will be flown at half-mast to pay our respects to the children of the former Kamloops residential school. We also encourage staff and students to wear orange this week to stand in solidarity of the 215 children.
We stand in continued commitment to the ongoing reconciliation work that is necessary for the truth to be known and shared through education.
The following is a list of resources and hotlines dedicated to supporting Indigenous people:
- KUU-US Crisis Line 1-800-588-8717
- Indian Residential School Survivors and Family 1-866-925-4419
Mon – Fri: 8am – 8 pm and Weekends: 10 am – 2pm
- Tsow-Tun-Le-Lum Society: 1-888-403-3123
- Aboriginal Wellness Program: 604-675-2551 or 1-866-884-0888
- Canadian Mental Health Association: 1-800-555-8222
- HeretoHelp: 1-800-661-2121
National Crisis Hotlines
- Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868
- Crisis Services Canada 1-833-456-4566 or text 45645
- First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line 1-855-242-3310