Canadian Native Children were, as were Native American and Alaskan Native Children, and Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children, routinely rounded up and taken away from their families, either forcibly or by subterfuge. Initially they were sent to boarding schools where their culture was systematically beaten out of them, in an attempt to assimilate them into white society. These schools were largely phased out in the 1960s, but were replaced by putting the children in individual foster and adoptive families. This latter practice is now known as the Sixties Scoop, and was discontinued after about 20 years.
Many families the children were placed in were abusive and racist, and many grew up being told they were of French or Italian extraction, rather than Native Canadian. In addition, about 3,000 were sent south to the USA for adoption, further complicating their attempts to trace their origins. Policy now is to place native children within their extended families, with other Aboriginal families, or with well-prepared white families.
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