Archive for the 'Residential School Claims' Category

Residential School Survivor Receives First Settlement Payment

The first compensation cheque in the largest abuse claims settlement in history was issued today.

An Alberta teacher who was forced to spend 10 years in one of Canada’s Indian Residential Schools was presented with her cheque by Assembly of First Nations Chief, Phil Fontaine. You can read more here.

The Residential Schools settlement is the largest class action settlement in Canadian history and, I believe, is the largest abuse claims settlement in the world. I posted details here.

Largest Class Action in Canadian History Moves Forward

Kathy Shaw at bishop-accountability.org  has posted a link to a story in the Anglican Journal  about the Canadian Indian Residential Schools abuse claims settlement.

The article refers to the settlement as the largest class action settlement in Canadian history. It certainly is that. But more importantly it is the largest abuse claims settlement in the world. More than TWO BILLION dollars in compensation for loss of language and culture to 80,000 potential claimants . Plus a compensation program that will pay up to an additional $275,000.00 in compensation to victims of sexual abuse and serious physical abuse. 

I have represented the Association for the Survivors of the Shubenacadie Indian Residential School for twelve years. I am proud to have been part of the team that negotiated what is sure to be an historic claims settlement.

Indian Residential Schools Settlement Finalized!

The National Class action settlement to compensate up to 80,000 former residents of Canada’s Indian Residential Schools passed it’s final hurdle today.

The deadline for survivors to “opt out” of the settlement has passed and the deal is now final.

Our client, Nora Bernard was intrumental in achieving the deal, the largest class action settlement in Canada. You can read more about Nora Bernard, and the details of the settlement here and here.

I am proud to have represented Nora Bernard and the hundreds of other survivors of the Shubenacadie Indian Residential School and to have played a part in negotiating the largest abuse claims settlement in history.

History of Canada’s Indian Residential School Claims

For some background on the history behind the Indian Residential School claims, you can look here.

For some background on the claims that our firm has been handling for Survivors of the Shubenacadie Indian Residential School, check here.

Historic Abuse Claims Settlement Set to Pass Final Hurdle

The Globe and Mail has reported  that the largest abuse claims settlement in history is likely to pass it’s final hurdle today. Upwards of 80,000 former students of Church run Indian Residential schools are set to receive payments for sexual abuse, physical abuse and psychological abuse that they suffered in the schools.

Today is the deadline for former students to “opt out” of the class action settlement. If more than 5000 students drop out of the settlement, the court approval order considers the deal null and void. As of today, less than a hundred former students across the country have opted out and it is expected that the deal will be finalized today.

The class action settlement will pay out  two billion dollars in compensation to students who were forced to attend the schools.

In addition, former students who were seriously physically abused, sexually abused or who suffered serious psychological effects from attending the schools will be entitled to apply for additional payments of up to $250,000.00 each. It is expected that these payments will total an additional one billion to two billion dollars.

I am proud to have represented hundreds of survivors of the Shubenacadie Indian Residential Schools over the last dozen years. I wrote about the history of the claims negotiations here.

When the opt out deadline passes the Shubenacadie survivors, and 80,000 other former residential schools students, will have taken the final step towards receiving a recognition of the harm that they suffered as a result of Canada’s attempt at cultural assimilation to eliminate native people.

It’s about time.

Bishop sex abuser changed the law in Canada

A disgraced former Roman Catholic Bishop convicted of sexual abuse has died. Hubert O’Connor was convicted of sexually abusing children at the Cariboo Indian Residential School in British Columbia.

During his trial O’Connor’s lawyers sought access to the victims’ psychological records. The right of an accused to make an application for a court order to receive copies of a victim’s therapeutic records was eventually upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada; a procedure that became known as an “O’Connor application”.

In response to an outcry from women’s groups and abuse survivors, the Government of Canada eventually passsed Bill C-46 amending the Criminal Code of Canada to protect the privacy rights of victims of abuse.

You can read about O’Connor here and here .

660 Million Dollar Payment (second) Largest Abuse Claim Settlement to Date?

A California judge has approved a $660 million sexual abuse settlement by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles. The settlement means that 500 + victims of abuse will not have to testify in court.

Terms of the settlement also require the Church to release confidential internal files showing steps the RC Church took to cover up the abuse over many decades.

You can read more about the settlement here.

The settlement is being reported as a record breaking payment to settle abuse claims. While the agreement is certainly the largest to date in the U.S., the 660 million dollar payment pales in comparison to the 5 BILLION DOLLAR settlement that the Canadian government and several religious organizations have agreed to pay to 70,000 survivors of abuse in Canada’s Indian Residential Schools.

I posted about the Indian Residential School’s Abuse Claims settlement here.


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