Saturday May 30, 2015

'Cultural genocide is probably the best description of what went on here'

Listen 9:20

The residential school system remains one of the darkest chapters in Canada's history -- 130 years of institutionalised violence against Aboriginal children, sent to state-funded, church-run schools that were designed to stamp out their cultural heritage. 

The last residential school closed in 1996, but the saga of the residential school system is far from over. The truth is just starting to emerge, and there's a long road ahead of healing and reconciliation, says Justice Murray Sinclair, chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

"Cultural genocide is probably the best description of what went on here," Justice Sinclair tells Evan Solomon.

Days before the TRC is set to present its final report and recommendations, Justice Sinclair joins us to discuss what he learned after six years of hearing witness testimonies, and what Canada's next steps towards reconciliation should be now that the truth is finally out.