Friday marks the deadline for Sixties Scoop survivors to apply for compensation under a federal class action lawsuit.
Critics of the deadline say former adoptees need more time, and that some may not even know yet about the settlement.
Colleen Cardinal, co-founder of the organization National Indigenous Survivors of Child Welfare, says people are calling her in a panic.
“They’re like, oh my God, I didn’t know — like, I may be eligible or my siblings, or somebody I know was an adoptee and they don’t know about it,” she said. “So people are scrambling to get their information.”
Nearly two years ago Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett stood with adoptees and announced each would receive $25,000 to $50,000 each in compensation for the harm they endured by being separated from their families, communities and culture.
Cardinal says word of the settlement hasn’t reached all survivors, especially those now living outside of Canada. She said she also knows individuals who believe they’re not eligible due to misconceptions.
“We know that it took place from the late ’50s up until the ’80s,” she said. “So there’s a whole bunch of people who might have missed and didn’t know. And now they only have today and tomorrow to apply.”
Cardinal believes there should be no deadline for the settlement.
APTN News reached out to Bennett’s office for comment but did not receive a response by deadline.