The Indian Residential Schools (IRS) system has been referred to as “Canada's greatest national shame”. The IRS system is now the subject of the Canadian Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). Unlike other truth commissions that have been created due to regime change, where a majority of citizens sought a truth-seeking process, Canada’s TRC arose as a result of protracted litigation by survivors of the IRS system against the government and churches that ran the schools. This article reviews the genesis of TRC in a legal settlement agreement, along with some of the challenges this origin entails.

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