U.S. Interior Secretary Deb Haaland (Laguna Pueblo) and Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Bryan Newland (Bay Mills Indian Community) will travel to Anchorage, Alaska, on Sunday, October 22, 2023 to hear testimonies from Alaska Natives and their descendants who endured the nearly 200-year federal Indian boarding school system.
The listening session will be the tenth stop on the "Road to Healing" tour, an effort by the U.S. Department of the Interior to collect oral testimonies and initiate healing following the legacy of the more than 500 institutions operated or supported by the federal government that served to assimilate Indigenous children from the 1800s through the mid 1980s.
Last year, Haaland launched the Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative to shed light on the troubled history of Federal Indian boarding school policies and their legacy for Indigenous Peoples. In May 2022, the Department released Volume 1 of an investigative report as part of the Initiative, which calls for connecting communities with trauma-informed support and facilitating the collection of a permanent oral history.