The NCTR has still not accessed records and data from some church denominations and government archives. But in January 2022, the federal government struck a deal that will see it share more than 850,000 documents related to residential schools.
The Call to Action:
We call upon provincial, territorial, municipal and community archives to work collaboratively with the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation to identify and collect copies of all records relevant to the history and legacy of the residential school system, and to provide these to the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation.
In January 2022, Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Marc Miller said the federal government had struck a deal with the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation that will see the government hand over more than 875,000 documents relating to residential schools. The government said it did not release the documents earlier because of third-party obligations to Catholic entities.
Among the records to be released are 11 school narratives — reports compiled by Ottawa outlining an institution’s history, including its administration, the number of Indigenous children forced to attend it and key events, such as reports of abuse. These new documents will be added to the narratives the NCTR has for 125 other residential schools.
Some provinces, territories and municipalities are co-operating and sharing data with the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, according to the NCTR’s Chief Archivist Raymond Frogner.
But the NCTR has still not accessed records and data (ie. student lists, photos) from some church denominations and government archives.
In June 2021, The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, the Catholic religious order that operated residential schools in Saskatchewan and British Columbia, made a formal “commitment to transparency” to disclose all historical documents in its possession that are related to the schools.