We took away your past, present and future’

Published April 1, 2011

Advocates, archivists and abuse survivors convened in Vancouver in early March to examine the challenges of documenting and preserving the stories of abuse victims in countries around the world. Called “Sharing the Truth,” the conference was organized by Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). More than a dozen expert speakers outlined human rights abuses in countries such as Serbia, Bosnia, Kozovo, Rwanda, Chad, Francoist Spain, Guatemala, Mexico and El Salvador. “While memory is a dimension of justice, we must record the truth in the ethical context,” said Dr. Doudou Diene, a Senagalese human rights advocate and former UN special rapporteur. “We need to examine the human values that were the basis of these practices.” Briton Stephen Smith, executive director of the Shoah Foundation in Los Angeles and a leading Holocaust educator, stressed the need for accountability to the survivors of the residential schools. “We must challenge and change our conscience,” he said. “We took away your past, present and future, and we need to be accountable for what we did in the past.” Ω


  • Diana Swift

    Diana Swift is an award-winning writer and editor with 30 years’ experience in newspaper and magazine editing and production. In January 2011, she joined the Anglican Journal as a contributing editor.

Related Posts

Skip to content