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September 24, 2020
Members of the Brock University and Niagara communities are invited to wear orange shirts Wednesday, Sept. 30 to raise awareness of the history and ongoing effects of Canada’s residential school system.
Orange Shirt Day has its origins in 1973, when Phyllis (Jack) Webstad was stripped of a new orange shirt purchased by her grandmother on her first day at the St. Joseph Mission residential school in Williams Lake, B.C., leaving her feeling worthless and insignificant.
Sandra Wong, Aboriginal Academic Support Program Co-ordinator/Instructor in Aboriginal Student Services (AbSS), said wearing an orange shirt allows allies to join together with Indigenous communities as they remember the approximately 150,000 children forced to attend residential schools, where many experienced physical and sexual abuse, as well as more than 6,000 students who did not survive.