It’s the first victory for a 60s scoop lawsuit in Canada.
Ontario Superior Court Justice Edward Belobaba found Canada had breached its “duty of care” and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent thousands of on-reserve children who were placed with non-native families from losing their indigenous heritage.
Indigenous student, Donika Stonefish says although the events occurred years ago, the implications have a ripple effect that has carried on to today.
“These kids were taken away when they were 3.. They didn’t get to know how to be a family. They didn’t get to know how to act in a normal setting.”
She has seen the effects first hand.
“My grandmother went to a residential school and my father was a 60s scoop kid. They would take away kids from their parents because they were deemed unfit when they were fine. I don’t really have a lot to do with my dad. He was a drug addict, he went to jail, he never got to know that type of family.”
Stonefish says now, Indigenous people are stereotyped as drug addicts and alcoholics because of their harsh past which Canada needs to continue to work towards understanding.
The lawsuit was launch eight years ago and wanted $1.3 billion on behalf of around 16,000 indigenous children in Ontario.
“To fully understand Canada we need to understand there are still a lot of issues we have.”