Civil Claims for Uncivilized Acts: Filing Suit Against the Government for American Indian Boarding School Abuses
Andrea Anne Curcio
Georgia State University - College of Law
Hastings Race and Poverty Law Journal, Vol. 4, p. 45, 2006
This article discusses how, from the late 1800s through the early 1970s, the American government removed American Indian children from their parents and placed them in government-run boarding schools as part of the plan to decimate American Indians as a distinct people. It discusses the schools' inhumane living conditions as well as the abuse suffered by young children as the government implemented its de-culturization plan through these schools. The article then discusses potential civil claims available to boarding school attendees, including claims under the Tucker Act and FTCA, as well as international law claims. It also briefly reviews Canadian governmental attempts to aid boarding school litigants and urges the United States to undertake similar action, or to consider other ways to begin to redress some of the wrongs inflicted upon boarding school survivors. The article concludes by arguing that although centuries of genocidal conduct cannot be redressed by litigation of the boarding school cases, cases brought by boarding school attendees can vindicate individual litigants and pursuit of these claims also can serve to bring the long-hidden horrors of the government's abusive and horrendous treatment of American Indian children into the public consciousness and dialogue.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 86
Keywords: tort, Federal Tort Claims Act, Canada, Tucker Act, American Indian, Bureau of Indian Affairs, boarding school, abuse
JEL Classification: K13, K39Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: March 7, 2009
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