Sign Petition

We demand the resignation of Senator Lynn Beyak and issuance of a formal apology.

1,962 Signatures Goal: 1,000

NDP MP Romeo Saganash is calling on Conservative Senator Lynn Beyak to resign after comments she made about residential schools.

Saganash, the Member of Parliament for Abitibi—Baie-James—Nunavik—Eeyou, is a residential school survivor.

"It is clear that the schools have been, arguably, the most damaging of the many elements of Canada’s colonization of this land’s original peoples and, as their consequences still affect the lives of Aboriginal people today, they remain so."
—John S. Milloy, A National Crime

“I speak partly for the record, but mostly in memory of the kindly and well-intentioned men and women and their descendants — perhaps some of us here in this chamber — whose remarkable works, good deeds and historical tales in the residential schools go unacknowledged for the most part,” Beyak said Tuesday in the Senate.

Her statements minimize the experiences of thousands and thousands of aboriginal children who were ripped away from their families (many by police officers who had a duty to protect them from harm), forced to learn English (or French), not allowed to speak their own mother tongue, not permitted to participate in their culture and traditions, not permitted to practice their faith, raped, sodomized, beaten, underfed, and not provided proper medical care, to name just a few of the sins that were inflicted whether or not by “well intentioned religious teachers” or paedophiles without a single good intention. This forced integration and the denial of the child’s culture, language and customs was done under threat of torture and actual torture.

Beyak, who lives in Dryden, Ont., is a member of the Senate committee of Aboriginal Peoples. She was appointed to the Senate in 2013 by former prime minister Stephen Harper.

It's not the first time Beyak has made controversial remarks. On Feb. 28, she questioned the need to add protection for transgender people in the Canadian Human Rights Act and advised people in the LGBTQ community not to draw attention to themselves, citing friends of hers.

If you believe that it is unacceptable for a Canadian Senator to trivialize one of the darkest chapters of Canadian history, then sign the petition and contact her directly at lynn.beyak@sen.parl.gc.ca or phone the senate (1-800-267-7362) and demand her resignation.

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March 11
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  • Danica Evering
    Danica Evering Canada, Montr
    May 10, 2017
    May 10, 2017
    Given these comments, Senator Lynn Beyak has demonstrated that she does not deserve the title of being part of the chamber of "sober second thought." The reduction of what demonstrably amounts to cultural genocide to the realm of well-intention and good deed is egregious. Removal from the Aboriginal peoples committee is not enough. Beyak's doubt over adding protection in the Human Rights Act for transgender people and advising them to not draw attention to themselves is another angle for Beyak's complete incapacity to make decisions that are in the best interests of Canadians. She must resign immediately.
  • Russ baker
    Russ baker Canada, Airdrie
    Apr 28, 2017
    Apr 28, 2017
    There must be someone who doesn't need to be taught about empathy for communities that are marginalized.
  • Leanne James
    Leanne James Canada, Nanaimo
    Apr 12, 2017
    Apr 12, 2017
    Her comments regarding aboriginal people is an affront to all Canadians. I do not want her words reflecting our values as Canadians!
  • veronica stevens
    veronica stevens Canada, Nanaimo
    Apr 10, 2017
    Apr 10, 2017
    I do not want this woman representing me. She is totally out of touch
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