For those who attended residential schools run by the Catholic Church and have been waiting on the final 30 per cent of their settlement cheques, the wait is now over as the church has settled with the federal government instead of making individual reparation cheques to survivors.
As survivors began filing their claims last September, many were surprised when cheques for 70 per cent of the funds owed to them arrived with letters stipulating that the Catholic Church would be sending cheques covering the balance. Victims who had attended residential schools of other denominations, however, were receiving full compensation cheques without delay.
Though the multibillion-dollar compensation deal between the remaining 80,000 survivors and the government went into effect last September, the Catholic Church did not agree to the deal to pay out the balance and remained in negotiation with the federal government.
The Catholic Church was liable for a fee of $54 million but they have instead made a deal to pay $25 million into a healing and reconciliation fund, to open the church’s archives, and provide counselling and other services to survivors.
Each denomination was responsible for paying out compensation funds to the survivors, including $2.1 million from the Presbyterian Church and $25 million from the Anglican Church. The Anglicans are now angling for a similar deal received by the Catholic Church.