by Richard Long,
Today is a red-letter day for our friends in Grise Fiord and Resolute Bay. They got their apology!
We have been praying with them for several years that they would get an official formal apology for the forced relocation that their people endured more than 50 years ago, when they were essentially used as “human flagpoles” by the government of the day. By that I mean, using the words of the survivors, that they were used to prove the ownership of the high arctic, in that Canada could say, “we have people living up there.”
This has been a long-awaited day, and we need to thank God for the brand new Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs – John Duncan for this swift and good decision. We praise God for this day and pray that it would continue the healing that forgiveness and repentance works in a nation and a people.
Here’s the opening lines of the CBC story on this apology
The federal government says it “deeply regrets” the forced relocation of Inuit to the High Arctic in the 1950s.
Indian and Northern Affairs Minister John Duncan issued a formal apology on Wednesday for the government’s controversial High Arctic relocation program, in which a total of 19 Inuit families from northern Quebec were moved about 1,200 kilometres to the far northern settlements of Grise Fiord and Resolute, in what is now Nunavut.
The transplanted Inuit had to cope with unfamiliar conditions and little government support.
“The government of Canada apologizes for having relocated Inuit families and recognizes that the High Arctic relocation resulted in extreme hardship and suffering for Inuit who were relocated,” Duncan stated in a release at midday Wednesday.
“We deeply regret the mistakes and broken promises of this dark chapter of our history.”