Producer/Host: Meredith DeFrancesco
Issue: Environmental and Social Justice
Program Topic: The Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission and outreach for commissioner nominations
a) This spring, a Declaration of Intent to commit to a truth and reconciliation process was signed by the Wabanaki tribal governments of the Penobscot Nation, the Passamaquoddy Tribe at Sipayik, the Passamaquoddy Tribe at Motahkmikuk, the Aroostook Bands of the Mic Macs, the Houlton Band of the Mailiseets and the Maine state government. This is the first of it’s kind Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) process.
b) October 1st is the deadline for nominations for the five commissioners for the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission .
c) Over the next 27 to 33months, commission members will collect stories from the five tribal communities and from non-tribal Maine residents and will compile a final report. The stories expected to be shared will come from both direct experiences and the conveyed experiences of others who were impacted by historically overt federal and state child welfare practices to assimilate indigenous children. The TRC also will observe how the separation of children from their communities has impacted the tribes. The Truth and Reconciliation process aims to collectively recognize history, improve child welfare practices and facilitate a process of decolonization for tribal and non tribal Maine residents.
A) Esther Attean Altivator,Passamaquoddy tribal member, Muskie School of Public Service lead staff person on the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission process
B) Carolyn Morrison, Interium Director for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission