Ottawa Defends Handling Of Timber Bay School Claim

Wednesday, February 11, 2009 at 14:50



Indian Affairs is standing by a decision to reject a bid by the Lac La Ronge Indian Band to have a boarding school included in a compensation agreement.


The government recently informed the band that the Timber Bay Children’s Home does not qualify under the Residential Schools Settlement Agreement — meaning former students can’t apply for compensation.


Government spokesperson Patricia Valladao says even though Ottawa had a hand in funding the institution, the Timber Bay school still doesn’t meet the two main criteria to be added to the list of eligible schools — that the institution was jointly or solely run by the government and that the children were placed there by the government.


Valladao says the settlement agreement does include an appeal mechanism for situations like this.


Band executive director Blake Charles says the band has no choice but to appeal, and calls the government’s decision “disrespectful” to the survivors.


Charles says the evidence the band has accumulated shows Ottawa had more involvement in the Timber Bay school than it cares to admit.