INDIGENOUS DATA SOVEREIGNTY
“In January, Kimberly Murray, Special Interlocutor for missing children and unmarked graves, convened the third of a series of national gatherings. The focus of the meeting was Indigenous data sovereignty. As undocumented graves continue to be discovered at Indian Residential School sites, and as communities seek records related to unmarked graves, the issue of the ownership, access and control of Residential School records has emerged. Murray observed that Indigenous data sovereignty was vital in ensuring that “Indigenous values, rights, [and] interests,” inform decision making about these records.
The Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre’s Interim Executive Director, Kristin Kozar, presented at the conference. She noted that colonial frameworks and policies had kept Residential School records out of reach of most Indigenous communities and she called for legislative reform that prioritized communities’ sovereign rights. Kozar drew attention to the growing number of archives in Indigenous communities, a trend that ensured archives were “accountable to their own citizens in the use and management of community information.”
Image source: CBC. Used with permission.
- The Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre Congratulates Kristin Kozar As Our Executive DirectorNovember 14, 2023 It is official, Kristin Kozar is the Executive Director of Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre. Her appointment is official as of October 18, 2023. Kozar’s affirmed position with the Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre is a welcomed and celebrated announcement. “On behalf of… Read more: The Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre Congratulates Kristin Kozar As Our Executive Director
- Stó:lō confirms 158 children’s deaths at four institutions as investigation reveals rampant neglect, abuseOur hearts are with all those affected by these institutions, and with the First Nations impacted by this news. Read Cara McKenna’s coverage of this announcement for Indiginews.
- ‘A different place’: How the missing children of a former B.C. residential school changed CanadaTricia Logan, the Interim Academic Director at the Centre, addresses the crucial significance of both the immediate local and global response to Tk’emlúps te Secwepemc’s announcement on May 27. She emphasizes the indispensable role of annual reflection in fostering widespread awareness about residential schools and illuminating Canada’s complex relationship with… Read more: ‘A different place’: How the missing children of a former B.C. residential school changed Canada
- Statement Regarding the Tseshaht First Nation Research Findings at the Site of the Former Alberni Residential SchoolFebruary 22, 2023 The Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre at UBC (the Centre) shares in deep sadness with all impacted by the announcement from Tseshaht First Nation regarding the location of 17 potential unmarked graves at the site of the former Alberni Indian Residential School (AIRS), and the… Read more: Statement Regarding the Tseshaht First Nation Research Findings at the Site of the Former Alberni Residential School
- Indigenous data sovereignty concerns raised as harm from residential schools continuesPresenting at the fourth National Gathering on Unmarked Burials, the Centre’s Interim Executive Director Kristin Kozar states that colonial frameworks and policies related to Indigenous data governance need to be changed.
The records offer diverse perspectives (former students, officials, journalists, scholars) and include Survivor testimonies, Truth and Reconciliation Commission hearings, photographs, maps, government documents, church documents, and newspaper articles.
Responding to Survivors’ desire to have a single point of access to residential school records, the Centre provides access to an online database containing digital copies of records from partner organizations. This single access point brings together records that are otherwise dispersed online and in physical spaces.
The Centre is located on the traditional, ancestral, unceded territory of the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ speaking xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam people). We are privileged to work with the Musqueam First Nation and the Musqueam Archives as community partners.
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