An onlooker stands at the foot of the B.C. legislature steps, where numerous shoes, stuffed animals and candles paid homage to 215 Indigenous children whose remains were found buried at the site of a residential school in Kamloops. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

An onlooker stands at the foot of the B.C. legislature steps, where numerous shoes, stuffed animals and candles paid homage to 215 Indigenous children whose remains were found buried at the site of a residential school in Kamloops. (Don Descoteau/News Staff)

B.C. Legislative Assembly apologizes for removing memorial for the unmarked 215

Shoes, stuffies, candles taken from legislative steps after vigil for children in unmarked graves

The B.C. Legislature has issued an apology after a display honouring the 215 Indigenous children found in an unmarked, mass grave was removed from its steps without warning.

The display, featuring shoes, stuffed animals, and candles, was set up Friday evening (May 28) as a number of people gathered on the front steps to express their grief.

Later that night, after everyone had left, security officers extinguished the candles and collected the mementos, according to a statement from the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia. The items were picked up on Saturday by one of the event’s organizers.

“Compassion and sensitivity should have been exercised with the memorial items remaining in place. The Legislative Assembly offers its sincere apologies for the hurt this has caused,” reads the statement.

More memorial items have since been placed on the steps and will not be disturbed during this time of mourning.

Last week, the chief of the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced that the remains of 215 children had been found buried on the site of a former residential school in Kamloops, B.C. Chief Rosanne Casimir said the children, some as young as three, were students at the school, which was once the largest in Canada’s residential school system.

Kamloops Indian Residential School operated between 1890 and 1969. The federal government took over operation from the Catholic Church to operate it as a day school until it closed in 1978.

— with a file from Canadian Press

ALSO READ: Victoria vigil honours Indigenous children buried at Kamloops residential school

ALSO READ: Gitksan grandmother says Canadians need to face the whole truth about residential schools


 

Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

Victoria

Just Posted

Rebecca Neudorf and Siddhartha Minhas express the joyful atmosphere of this year’s grad cavalcade. Photo: Bill Metcalfe
PHOTOS AND VIDEO: Nelson grads and proud parents celebrate a community milestone

Saturday’s cavalcade was graced with perfect weather

Forty sled dogs were seized by the BC SPCA from a Salmo kennel in February. A recent ruling has decided the dogs won’t be returned. Photo: Gounsil/Flickr
BC Farm Industry Review Board rules against Salmo kennel after 40 sled dogs seized

Spirit of the North Kennels was also ordered to pay BC SPCA $64,000

Protestors blocking Columbia Avenue Saturday evening. Photo: Betsy Kline
Old growth protesters block Castlegar’s main street for 24 hours

Members of Extinction Rebellion stayed overnight in downtown Castlegar

A bear-proof waste container at Lakeside Park. Not all garbage bins at the park are bear-proof. Photo: Tyler Harper
VIDEO: Bear observed eating from garbage bin in Lakeside Park

The City of Nelson is gradually adding bear-proof bins throughout the city

Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce executive director Tom Thomson. Photo: Tyler Harper
NEWS AND VIEWS: Businesses still need assistance even in a more normal summer

Tom Thomson writes about a new Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce initiative

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

Most Read