Righting Canada’s Wrongs: The Sixties Scoop and the Stolen Lives of Indigenous Children
by Andrew Bomberry and Teresa Edwards
An examination of the Sixties Scoop – a child welfare policy in Canada that saw the removal of Indigenous children from their families, often by force.
Starting in 1951, Indigenous children in Canada were taken by social welfare agencies from their families and placed in the care of non-Indigenous families. These children grew up without their birth families, cultural roots, and language. Many tried to run away and some died in the attempt. The taking of the children is known as the Sixties Scoop, though the policies and practices started before the 1960s and lasted long after. Today, Indigenous children are shockingly over-represented in the child welfare system across Canada.
Indigenous communities organized and fought back for their children. In 1985, an official government report condemned the practice.
In the 1990s, lawsuits were filed against the governments who had supported taking the children. In 2018 and 2019, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba apologized for their roles. In 2020, the Canadian government agreed to a settlement for survivors of the Scoop.
Through hundreds of photos and primary documents, readers meet many survivors of the Scoop. They learn how Indigenous communities fought back to save their children and won, and how Indigenous communities across Canada are working towards healing today.
About the Authors
ANDREW BOMBERRY works with the Legacy of Hope Foundation to promote greater understanding and awareness of the Residential School system, the Sixties Scoop and their ongoing impacts. His work includes encouraging informed action and following-up on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action. He has over ten years’ experience working in public policy and education covering Indigenous histories, cultures and identities. Andrew Bomberry is Haudenosaunee from the Six Nations of the Grand River territory. He lives in Toronto (the Dish with One Spoon territory).
TERESA EDWARDS is a member of the Listuguj Mi’gmaq First Nation in Quebec. Her ceremonial name is Young Fire Woman, a name that she strives to fulfill through her work as an International Human Rights Lawyer. Since 2017, Teresa has been the Executive Director and In-House Legal Counsel for the Legacy of Hope Foundation. The goal of her work is to address racism and injustice, as well as foster equity, education, and Reconciliation. She lives in Ottawa, Ontario.
Righting Canada's Wrongs Resource Guide
A resource guide for the Righting Canada's Wrongs series that provides lessons in historical thinking.(more)
The Righting Canada’s Wrongs series is devoted to the exploration of racist and discriminatory government policies and actions against various groups through our history, the fight for acknowledgement and justice and the eventual apologies and restitution of subsequent governments. The award-winning books in this series make a valuable addition to any classroom or library looking for kid-friendly and appealing resources on social justice and equal rights in Canada.
The engaging and curriculum-based lessons in this Resource Guide will help students to further understand some of the important events in Canada's history that helped shape our current multicultural society. Educators will find support for teaching about Canada's past treatment of minorities and how to approach the topic of racism and discrimination. As well, students will learn about the important roles that these groups have played in Canadian society.
The third edition of the Resource Guide has been updated to include the most recent books in the Righting Canada’s Wrongs series: Africville, Anti-Semitism and the MS St. Louis and The LGBT Purge.
- A different historical thinking concept is introduced in each lesson.
- Each of the main lessons are directly linked to books in the series. The Resource Guide also provides additional sections related to each book.
- Student Blackline Masters are provided for copying.
- Evaluation rubrics for your assessment of student achievement on each lesson are included.
- Video links throughout the guide will supplement your lesson and add another dimension to student learning.
Righting Canada's Wrongs: Japanese Canadian Internment in the Second World WarDuring the Second World War, over 20,000 Japanese Canadians had their civil rights, homes, possessions, and freedom taken away. This visual-packed book tells the story.$34.95, HardcoverInterest ages: 13-18
Righting Canada's Wrongs: The Komagata Maru and Canada's Anti-Indian Immigration Policies in the Twentieth CenturyA visual history of the courageous Indians who sailed to Vancouver to start a new life -- only to be turned away by a racist immigration policy$34.95, HardcoverInterest ages: 13-18
Righting Canada's Wrongs: Africville
In the 1960s, after ignoring the Black community’s repeated petitions for basic services, the City of Halifax bulldozed Africville in the name of urban renewal.$34.95, HardcoverInterest ages: 13-18
Righting Canada's Wrongs: The LGBT Purge and the fight for equal rights in Canada
Until recently, Canadian laws discriminated against LGBTq2+ people. Those in the Canadian Military, RCMP and civil service were targeted specifically.$34.95, HardcoverInterest ages: 13-18