NEWS

Philippe Couillard agrees with term 'cultural genocide' to describe residential schools

06/04/2015 11:17 EDT | Updated 06/04/2016 05:59 EDT
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard says he agrees with the use of the term "cultural genocide" to refer to Canada's residential school system.

Couillard made the comments this morning in Quebec City.

He was responding to the release of a report from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which looked into the legacy of residential schools in Canada.

The long-awaited summary report, released Tuesday, condemned more than 100 years of Canada's aboriginal policy, saying the "establishment and operation of residential schools were a central element of this policy, which can best be described as 'cultural genocide.'" 

While Couillard didn't go into specifics, he said a review of the relationship with aboriginal people is needed.

He stressed the importance of aboriginal communities in helping to develop the province's economy.

The report included 96 recommendations to help Canada move towards reconciliation with its First Nations.

The recommendations apply not only to various levels of government, but to schools, societies, churches and aboriginal governments.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has so far not committed to following through on the recommendations.

During question period this week, Harper reiterated his government's support for aboriginal people, referencing the recent budget's funding and investments for First Nations.

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