Tag Archives: The Sixties and Seventies Scoop

Monica Wysotski


Monica Wysotski a Mohawk from Akwesasne introduces the 60’s scoop, in the wake of residential schools. Asking to meet with other First Nations people in Canada who share a similar experience with being taken from their homeland and raised in another culture and another identity. She would like to document on film with willing participants what the 60’s scoop share in common with the abuses and harms of residential schools and create a forum for healing.

Advertisements

AJE: Canada’s Secret Scoop


n another effort to assimilate aboriginal children into Anglo-society, the Canadian government took thousands of children from their families during the 1960s and adopted them into White families. Producer Chieu Luu went to Winnipeg, Manitoba and spoke to one survivor of the so-called “60’s scoop,” reporter Rob Reynolds voiced the package.

 

Hidden Colonial Legacy: The 60’s Scoop


It’s estimated that up to 18,000 thousand First Nation, Inuit and Metis children were adopted or fostered to non-native homes from the 1960’s to the early 1980s. This came to be known as the 60’s scoop. Coleen Rajotte reports from Winnipeg about a Cree man returning home to Manitoba after 39 years away, and a young boy who benefited from new strategies in adoption to ensure that Aboriginal kids stay within their communities.

http://www.cbc.ca/doczone/8thfire/2012/01/hidden-colonial-legacy-the-60s-scoop.html

Legal setback for Ontario aboriginals taken from their families during the “Sixties Scoop”

About the Filmmaker

Coleen Rajotte is a Cree filmmaker and screenwriter based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She was a television reporter for CBC TV for a decade and is now an independent filmmaker. She is a producer for episode 1 Indigenous in the City in our series 8th Fire. Read more

.

The Lost Generation


Excerpts from :

The Lost Generation First Nations Communities &  White Middle-Class Adoption by

Debra Henry & Liz Lévesque

The Sixties Scoop-Province of Manitoba

 

In March of 1982, a Manitoba family court judge named Edwin Kimelman  held hearings across Manitoba about the phenomenon of white adoption of Native children from the province. After the hearings concluded, Judge Kimelman made this statement:

“When the Indian residential schools were operating, children were

forcibly removed from their homes for the duration of the

academic year. The children were punished if they used their own

language, sang their own songs or told their own stories. But  at

least under that system the children knew who their parents were

and they returned home for the summer months. With the closing

of the residential schools, rather than providing the resources on

reserves to build economic security and providing services to

support responsible parenting, society found  it easier and cheaper

to remove the children from their homes and apparently fill the

market demand for children in Eastern Canada and the U.S”11

Kimelman agreed with Native leaders in Manitoba that  aboriginal children were the victims of a policy of “wholesale exportation” to other provinces and the U.S. Judge Kimelman reviewed ninety-three cases of adoption and found that no attempt had been made to find Native homes for these aboriginal children. Over a period of twenty years (mid-1960s to early 80s), Manitoba lost about three thousand Native children to white adoption.

The Canadian Council on Social Development in the 1980s concluded that the staff of child welfare agencies tended to be white middle-class people who assumed that low-income Native parents could only provide a less than adequate home for their children. Basically, in the eyes of the child welfare system, the sin of the Native home was poverty.

Stories of Repatriation

 

Lisa’s Story

Lisa is the daughter of a Métis family that lives in the town of Camperville in northwestern Manitoba. She was born in the town of Winnipegosis and lived with her Métis parents until she was three and a half. She was removed from their home because they were heavy drinkers. No attempt was made to place her with other Métis relatives or within that same Métis community. Instead she was adopted out to a white middle-class couple in Montreal. Her adopted father started to sexually abuse her at the age of eleven. That same year the family moved with Lisa to the U.S. She was removed from the house and put into a series of foster homes after the abuse was reported. By the time she was fifteen she was working as a prostitute, had suffered every kind of STD imaginable, had an alcohol problem and a series of psychological and emotional problems for which she was under a doctor’s care. She was reunited with her family in April of 1985 at the age of sixteen. The reunion with her Métis family was one of “trying to recapture the lost years.” Lisa is still angry at the child welfare officials in Manitoba who “ruined my life and childhood.”*

 

 

Cameron’s Story

Cameron was born on the Sioux Valley Indian reserve in southwestern Manitoba. He was removed from his home at the age of eight because his parents were heavy drinkers. At age eleven, the Children’s Aid Society of Western Manitoba sent Cameron to live with a bachelor businessman in Wichita, Kansas (U.S.). Within six months he was running away from this home. A year and a half later the single man adopted Cameron after the Aid Society insisted that there were no local foster homes or adoptive parents. It is unknown whether or how hard the Aid Society looked  for local reserve homes. The adoption was a disaster. Cameron continued to run away from this home. At age thirteen he revealed that this man had been sexually abusing him. He would not testify against his adoptive father in court because this man had threatened him with physical violence. Cameron stayed in this home five more years after he had revealed the sexual abuse. At the age of eighteen he left the home but still remained in the city of Wichita. After he turned nineteen, he went on a drinking binge, broke into the home of his adoptive father and beat him to death with a baseball bat. Ironically, he served a fifteen year sentence for this murder in Stoney Mountain Penitentiary north of Winnipeg. His whereabouts today are unknown, but it is assumed that he has returned to the Sioux Valley reserve to try and pick up the pieces of his life.*

*These stories are found in The Dispossessed  by Geoffrey York.

Lisa and Cameron’s stories are only a few of the thousands of stories that have yet to be written and published. There are many more adopted children out there with similar stories. We cannot say that all of these adoptions turned out the way that Lisa and Cameron’s did. What we can say  is that these stories let the wider North American population know that there are Aboriginal individuals and communities that have been consistently victimized in this way with dehumanizing consequences that include: culture shock, identity crisis, psychiatric problems, prolonged grief, drug and alcohol problems, uncontrollable anger/rage and a myriad of other symptoms resulting from sexual and other kinds of abuse.

Anglo-American Worldview

  • our way is the best way
  • the world and various forces (illness/death) can be controlled by human beings
  • basic problem is ignorance and the solution is more information (education)
  • technology/technique is moving us toward perfection**
  • our faith in human ability to correct and control is virtually boundless
  • history is evolutionary. We are in a steady movement from inferior societies to our own
  • change is better than stability, conquest is better than holding a position, and the new is better than consolidating the old
  • our “superior” way of life will be the ascendant way for others
  • the good of the individual is more important than the good of the group
  • success (material/numerical, etc.) is the goal and failure must be avoided at all costs
  • scientists are our new priests and prophets. Science is our true religion. That means that scientific education is the great hope for our nation and the world12

Native Worldview

  • group has supremacy over the individual; values are learned collectively
  • harmony of individual with the tribe
  • harmony with the tribe and the land

harmony with the land and the Great Spirit (monotheism


 

The Kimelman Report. Quotes


In the early 1980s, following the notorious Sixties Scoop,[1] in which many children were removed from aboriginal families for adoption by non-aboriginal parents, the Manitoba government established a Review Committee on Indian and Métis Adoptions and Placements. Judge Edwin C. Kimelman chaired the Committee. In 1984, “After reviewing the file of every Native child who had been adopted by an out-of-province family in 1981, Judge Kimelman stated: ‘having now completed the review of the files… the Chairman now states unequivocally that cultural genocide has been taking place in a systematic, routine manner’.”[2]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kimelman_Report

1984 File Review Report of the committee in 1981 over 53% of the children placed outside of the Province of Manitoba were sent to the United States and over 86% of the children placed in care of adopted families and foster homes outside of Manitoba  were aboriginal ancestry.

File Review page 51

In  No Quiet Place, Kimelman J. describes the Province of Manitoba’s approach to aboriginal child welfare as being a continuation of policies, approach, and attitudes of Indian residential school era stating: “ with the closing of the residential schools, rather than providing the resources on reserves to build ecomonic security and providing the services to support responsible parenting, society found it easier and cheap to remove the children from their homes and apparently fill the market demand for children in Eastern Canada and the United States” (No Quiet Place, page 330)

Chief Judge Edwin C. Kimelman of the Provincial Court, Family Division, to head an inquiry into the child welfare system and how it affected Aboriginal people. In his final report, No Quiet Place, Chief Judge Kimelman concluded that the Aboriginal leaders were right; the child welfare system was guilty of “cultural genocide.

Chief Judge Kimelman advocated a drastic overhaul of the child welfare system in Manitoba. Some of his recommendations included:

• That Aboriginal child and family services agencies be notified whenever an Aboriginal child came into care.

• That policies and standards be implemented that would improve repatriation of Aboriginal children to their own communities and reunify Aboriginal children with their own families.

• That more, and more appropriate, resources be devoted to allow for placement homes in Aboriginal communities.

• That greater support be given to Aboriginal agencies to help them provide services to their off-reserve populations.

• That greater use be made of the extended family.

• That adoption in a non-Aboriginal home be used only as a last resort.

• That cultural awareness training be provided to all those working in Aboriginal communities or with Aboriginal people.

• That there be a more vigorous and stringent court review of cases involving Aboriginal children in care.

• That a program of “affirmative action” hiring be instituted

The 60’s Scoop – “Do you know what the 60 scoop means? “


The 60’s scoop

Karyn Russell  May 17th 2011

If one were to walk down any street of Canada and ask them if they knew about an important Canadian historical fact “Do you know what the 60 scoop means? “ The answer would be a resounding “No” that is unless you are First Nations

The 60 scoop era is a very important part of Canada’s unknown and often hidden history that started right after the Residential School era, some say it started even sooner than the 60’s and many say the statistics given about the number of children is far higher than records have ever shown- if there is ever to be true reconciliation and healing there first has to be an acknowledge of a government policy in which children were removed from their homes and communities without warning or consent.

These children were then adopted out or placed into foster care within non-native homes throughout Canada, the United States and even sent as far out as Europe- far from their culture, their spirituality, their traditions, their homelands… even those who grew up just miles away from their place of birth it was like they were in another world- everything they once were was wiped away and replaced with new foreign identities which ultimately lead to a loss of self-identity and a sense of isolation.

Many of us were never taught by our adoptive families, nor by the history classes in our schools that our Aboriginal people have a rich, beautiful and spiritual culture steeped with a deep powerful connection to this land and the creator; instead we were taught all the typical stereotypes and in essence to be prejudice and ashamed against ourselves that is if we ever were told the truth about our heritage…. Many of us were given information that was misleading or simply not true maybe it was an effort to keep us from finding our way home- we may never know the truth on that matter. I often advise people in their search to find the truth out themselves rather than to rely on information given to them in their childhood.

If we just let go for one minute even the concept of race, religion and just think about the human bond between a parent and a child- if we can just think about is what if it were you- what if one day the government came into your home and took your children away- how would you feel, what would you do and how would you survive something so devastating; it is not something any parent, nor child should ever endure yet ours did and yet it is something that is marginalized, ignored and denied.

What the government forgot is you cannot wipe away the color of our skin, nor the beat of our hearts and our spirits will always call us home… and you cannot kill the Indian within.

We are no longer those children lost and confused, beaten and silenced… we are adults who each have our sorrows and childhood grief’s to overcome- we are all stronger than anyone knew that we could be and one way or another we will find our way home again and we will stand proud of who we are.

It is because of technology each of us have come to understand the truth hidden from us for so long and have learned history our people have endured for centuries. It because of technology we are now able to join forces, to extend that hand of healing and the words of encouragement to everyone on that road back to who they once were- we know that we are not alone!

Welcome to The 60’s and 70’s Scoop


Good Morning and Welcome to The 60’s and 70’s Scoop. This Blog has been created by The 60’s and 70’s Scoop to bring us together and unite. We have been taken from our homes, families and lost our culture, traditions and our Language but, we have returned! It only takes a few minutes to get to know us and you will realize that we have a voice and a say to what happens to our futures. Together we can do something to make sure our inherit rights are protected and our voices are made clear. It’s time to take back what was stolen from us.  Our Pride, Our Dignity, Our Love, Our Families, and Set our Spirits Free! Together we are strong, coming together with one unified voice.

We hope that you will find the information that you need to find out:

Who you are

Why This Happened

We hope that you can reunite with your families and be prepared for what might occur and for those of your returning to Canada we hope that you found enough information to get your life restated. If you have any questions please send me a message.

email: whitemisty@yahoo.com