A few weeks ago I watched a very powerful film, Oranges and Sunshine. Based on the memoir of the same name, it tells the haunting tale of British Social Worker, Margaret Humphreys and her efforts to reunite children in the Legal Care of the British State who were shipped, unescorted to Australia, principally in the post WW2 years up to and including 1970.
I am now savouring, in the painfully delicious way one can enjoy a terrible expose, the book.
Canada has played her part in this forced mass migration of Children. The website, The British Home Children & Child Migrants in Canada, begins with this declaration
“From the late 1860s right up to 1948, over 100,000 children of all ages were emigrated right across Canada to be used as indentured farm workers and domestics. Believed by Canadians to be orphans, only two percent truly were. These children were sent to Canada by over 50 organizations including the well-known and still working charities: Barnardo’s, The Salvation Army and Quarrier’s, to name a few.”
As I continue to learn about the events portrayed my Margaret Humphreys, I will also remain patriotically aware of Canada’s complicity.
How we are today defines how history will judge us.