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Thursday, July 7, 2016

Sisters Torn Apart Reunited Decades Later #60sScoop

Sonya Murray, centre, made it her mission to track down her long-lost sisters Nakuset, left, and Rose Mary, right. (Submitted by Nakuset)
Sonya Murray, centre, made it her mission to track down her long-lost sisters Nakuset, left, and Rose Mary, right. (Submitted by Nakuset)


Women among thousands of First Nations children removed from their families under federal program


CBC News Posted: Jul 04, 2016 / Last Updated: Jul 05, 2016

Sonya Murray and her sister Nakuset hadn’t heard from their youngest sister Rose Mary since she was around five years old.
The two older sisters were taken from their family home in Thompson, Man., one night as part of a federal government program that’s now known as the Sixties Scoop.
Decades after being forced apart along with thousands of other First Nations children and placed in adoptive homes across Canada, the two sisters were reunited with Rose Mary Monday on CBC Montreal’s Daybreak.
Between the 1960s and 1985, the government estimates more than 11,000 Aboriginal children were removed from their families – often without the parents’ consent –  and adopted out under the program.
Nakuset
Nakuset said Rose Mary was ‘the missing piece’ and her sisters now have to make up for lost time. (Radio-Canada)

Others contend that as many as 50,000 children were adopted out under the program.
“One night, there was a knock on the door. Nakuset and I were alone in the house. I kind of opened door… and apparently some police came in and took us away,” Sonya said.
Nakuset and Sonya were kept in the same foster home for a brief period before they were separated.
‘She’s gone… that’s all I ever heard’
Sonya, who was around five years old at the time, was the eldest of the three girls.
“One morning I woke up and I looked in the bed over from me and it was all made up, and [Nakuset] was gone,” she said.
“I asked, ‘Where’s my sister?’ and they just said, ‘She’s gone.’ That’s all I ever heard.”
Nakuset was adopted by a family in Montreal, where she still lives, and Sonya was later returned to live with her mother and stepfather. She now lives near Kenora, Ont.
The emotions of that time are still raw for Nakuset, especially when she considers the loss Sonya felt and the effort she made to find her little sisters.
“Sonya made it her mission to try to find both of us, and she’s really the one that keeps us all together.”
That effort paid off last week, when she received a message from Rose Mary on Facebook last week.
Nakuset teenager
Nakuset says she grew up yearning for her native roots. ‘I so desperately wanted to belong. ‘ (Submitted by Nakuset)


The youngest sister had moved to Vienna, Austria, with her European father when she was around three years old.
“There were no goodbyes,” Sonya said. “She was just gone one day.”
The sisters’ four brothers were also taken from their mother and placed in homes.
‘She was the last missing piece of the puzzle’
The message from Rose Mary, who now lives in Horn, Austria, came as a welcome shock to Sonya.
“I couldn’t believe it. I wasn’t sure. My head was asking if this is real,” Sonya told CBC.
Since then, the three say they’ve been going “crazy” together, and they finally feel complete.
“In Austria, I used to feel lost and I never knew why,” Rose Mary said. “Now, my heart feels wide open and I’ve found new happiness.”
Rose Mary was “the missing piece,” Nakuset added, a feeling that was echoed by Sonya.
“You have a sense of emptiness, there’s always a feeling that you’re not full, you’re not complete,” she said.
“In meeting with my two sisters — now it’s ‘us’, not just me and you, like it was with Nakuset. It’s not just me and you against the world, it’s us against the world. We’re complete. She was the last missing piece of the puzzle.”
Nakuset said she can’t imagine the loneliness her youngest sister felt so far away.
“I think about how hard that must have been for her to be the only Cree in a country, you know, where there’s no one else who looks like her,” she said.
Nakuset said they’re now keen to get to Europe and teach their little little sister all about Cree culture and language. Rose Mary is already planning a visit to Canada next summer.
“We’re trying to do everything we can to make up for lost time,” Nakuset said.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/60s-scoop-reunited-sisters-cbc-1.3663770?cmp=abfb

Nakuset is one of the writers in the new book STOLEN GENERATIONS... PAPERBACK HERE: https://www.createspace.com/5982643

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Thought-provoking and moving 11 October 2012
Two Worlds - Lost children of the Indian Adoption Projects

If you thought that ethnic cleansing was something for the history books, think again. This work tells the stories of Native American Indian adoptees "The Lost Birds" who continue to suffer the effects of successive US and Canadian government policies on adoption; policies that were in force as recently as the 1970's. Many of the contributors still bear the scars of their separation from their ancestral roots. What becomes apparent to the reader is the reality of a racial memory that lives in the DNA of adoptees and calls to them from the past.
The editors have let the contributors tell their own stories of their childhood and search for their blood relatives, allowing the reader to gain a true impression of their personalities. What becomes apparent is that nothing is straightforward; re-assimilation brings its own cultural and emotional problems. Not all of the stories are harrowing or sad; there are a number of heart-warming successes, and not all placements amongst white families had negative consequences. But with whom should the ultimate decision of adoption reside? Government authorities or the Indian people themselves? Read Two Worlds and decide for yourself.

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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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