Some kids were made deaf by ear experiments done at a school in Kenora in the 1950s, according to a set of reports from 1954 that was just made public.
The report, written by Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Reservation School nurse Kathleen Stewart, explores experiments done on children with 14 different drugs to treat “ear troubles.”
“The most conspicuous evidence of ear trouble at Cecilia Jeffrey School has been the offensive odour of the children’s breath, discharging ears, lack of sustained attention, poor enunciation when speaking and loud talking,” she wrote.
In a followup report, it was revealed that three of the children were almost deaf with no ear drums, while six lost hearing in one ear, according to CBC, which obtained the reports.
A former student in the school, Richard green, told CBC that he remembers so-called nose drops used to treat what Stewart referred to as “mouth breathing.”
“We had nose drops, there were some different kinds of pills that we took for nutrition, I don’t know what they were, I still don’t know what they are,” Green said.
“The new information that’s coming out now, it’s been very troubling for the students who went there,” Green added. “It’s hard to process.”
The documents only surfaced after the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada went to court to gain access to them. The two reports are part of a trove of 3.5 million documents, which commission researcher’s have begun reading through.
The school was the site of many potential abuses, which are documented in a CBC report.