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The Royal BC Museum agrees with the recent statement by the First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC). The Sisters of St. Ann have a responsibility to be completely transparent about their archival records related to residential schools. The Sisters of St. Ann now have an opportunity to clearly identify what records they hold and provide better accessibility of these records to the public—but particularly to Indigenous communities whose members attended residential schools that the order once operated.
This level of transparency can only help the overall goals of truth-telling and reconciliation.
The Sisters St. Ann archives are located on the same precinct as the Royal BC Museum, but have their own locked and self-contained office space. The Royal BC Museum neither stewards nor has access to the records held by the Sisters of St. Ann. They manage their own records and processes in this private archives.
The Museum entered into this agreement with the Sister of St. Ann a decade ago with the understanding that the records revert to the BC Archives in 2027. We call upon the Sisters to revisit the agreement to allow transfer all the records to the BC Archives immediately so that we, working with our partners at the Indian Residential School History and Dialogue Centre, can facilitate unmediated access to Indigenous communities in a manner that’s respectful of the cultural experiences of survivors and their relatives.
View original signed Agreement