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Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Mapping the #60sScoop

 



But at the age of 28, sitting in a university classroom, Colleen Cardinal learned her experience was shared by many. It even had a name — the ’60s Scoop. From about 1951 until 1984, Canadian child welfare authorities took more than 20,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children from their homes and placed them with white families.

“I wanted to find all these adoptees, I wanted to know where they are, I wanted to hear what they went through,” Cardinal said.  But then, Cardinal said, that information wasn’t available.

Cardinal first decided to create a map after visiting a conference for grassroots human rights organizations in 2014.   There, Cardinal said she came across a world map drawn on a large, white bedsheet on which visitors could map their stories out with colourful yarn.

In 2019, Cardinal launched the online mapping tool.  Now, it includes the stories of more than 100 survivors who were displaced from across Canada to places as far as the U.K. and Botswana.  The map illustrates where people were born and where they were moved.  It logs birthdates, when people moved and if survivors met their biological families, the date that happened.  Each entry includes space for people to share words and videos telling their own stories and contact information for survivors to connect with others.

Genetic Detective, a genetic genealogy service near Ottawa, has offered to subsidize DNA test kits for some survivors, create a database of survivors' genetic information and connect survivors to their biological families.

A small group of survivors gathered in Ottawa last week.  They filmed themselves telling their stories in their own words, to create videos that will be posted on the map’s website.  By sharing their stories, Cardinal said she hopes to normalize their experiences and create a community for survivors.

“I know as an adoptee how lonely it is and how isolating it can be.  I needed (to find others).  So if I needed it, others need it,” Cardinal said. “And if we want it done our way, we need to do it ourselves — by survivors, for survivors.”

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Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

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ADOPTION TRUTH

As the single largest unregulated industry in the United States, adoption is viewed as a benevolent action that results in the formation of “forever families.”
The truth is that it is a very lucrative business with a known sales pitch. With profits last estimated at over $1.44 billion dollars a year, mothers who consider adoption for their babies need to be very aware that all of this promotion clouds the facts and only though independent research can they get an accurate account of what life might be like for both them and their child after signing the adoption paperwork.

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Why tribes do not recommend the DNA swab

Rebecca Tallbear entitled: “DNA, Blood, and Racializing the Tribe”, bearing out what I only inferred:

Detailed discussion of the Bering Strait theory and other scientific theories about the population of the modern-day Americas is beyond the scope of this essay. However, it should be noted that Indian people have expressed suspicion that DNA analysis is a tool that scientists will use to support theories about the origins of tribal people that contradict tribal oral histories and origin stories. Perhaps more important,the alternative origin stories of scientists are seen as intending to weaken tribal land and other legal claims (and even diminish a history of colonialism?) that are supported in U.S. federal and tribal law. As genetic evidence has already been used to resolve land conflicts in Asian and Eastern European countries, this is not an unfounded fear.

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