Following the resignations of the remaining two commissioners of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) on Jan. 30, the federal government announced that all parties to the Indian Residential Schools Agreement have agreed to a plan to select a new chair and commissioners.
A selection committee, led by Justice Frank Iacobucci, was charged with finding the best candidates for the panel as soon as possible in order to restart the TRC’s work, which stalled after former chair Justice Harry LaForme resigned last October.
Mr. Iacobucci, who was appointed by the federal government to help resolve problems with the TRC after Mr. LaForme resigned, said that all the parties — representatives of the Assembly of First Nations, the Métis National Council, Inuit groups, the churches and the government – came to a unanimous agreement on clarifying the governance roles of the chair and commissioners.
They also agreed to a process for, and membership of, the selection committee that will find replacements for Mr. LaForme as well as commissioners Jane Brewin Morley and Claudette Dumont-Smith.
The selection committee will include Phil Fontaine, representative plaintiff and the national chief of the Assembly of First Nations; Mary Simon, president of the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami; Michael Wernick, deputy minister of Indian Affairs; James Scott, on behalf of the Anglican Church of Canada, the Presbyterian Church in Canada, and the United Church of Canada; Pierre Baribeau, on behalf of the Catholic entities; Len Marchand, on behalf of claimants under the Indian Residential School Settlement Agreement, and Mr. Iacobucci as chair.