Just last week, the Seneca Gaming Corporation informed the public that it will be hosting the second edition of its “Every Child Matter” walk in downtown Niagara Falls. The objective of this initiative is to unite U.S. and Canadian communities in remembering and understanding the abuse faced by generations of Indigenous children at residential schools.
Seneca Gaming Corporation is a wholly owned and tribally chartered corporation of the Seneca Nation of Indians. It runs the Nation’s Class III casino gaming properties – Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino, Seneca Allegany Resort & Casino and Seneca Buffalo Creek Casino in Western New York. And its operations have brought tremendous economic value to the region.
Remembering the Victims
This year, the “Every Child Matters” walk will be held on Friday, September 30, 2022, in downtown Niagara Falls. Last year, the corporation held its first edition of the initiative, which saw hundreds of walkers with orange t-shirts joining in on the walk. They made a notable and powerful statement of support just after the remains of more than 1,000 victims were found in Canadian residential schools.
Seneca Gaming Corp. President and CEO Kevin Nephew said that no child or anyone in general should ever have to face hate and anger because of who they are, where they originated from and what they look like. He said that last year’s walk gave a real sense of community and a powerful message that the people stand with the Indigenous communities.
For this year’s walk, participants will rally at 5:30 p.m. at Seneca Square, in front of the Fourth Street entrance to Seneca Niagara Resorts & Casino. There will be opening remarks, where event speakers will acknowledge any Indian residential school survivors present. At 6:15 p.m., walkers will start along the approximately one-mile walk route, pausing for a moment of silence at Prospect Point
Seneca Gaming Corp. Chairwoman Dr. Lori Quigley will be one of the speakers at the event. Recently, she said the Native communities have been shaped and scarred by the tragedies of the residential school era for generations. She added that survivors of these atrocities who still feel the impacts deserve healing and community support
Gaming Compact Situation
Last month, Seneca Nation of Indians marked its 20th year of operations in New York State’s gambling landscape. Leaders of the Seneca Nation of Indians gathered at the company Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino to celebrate the occasion. One of the topics of discussion was the expiration of the current contract and a potential new one with the state.
Back then President of the Nation, Matthew Pagels, commented that he wants to see a new and fair gaming compact signed with the state’s administration for the tribe. He noted that the gaming scenery has changed drastically in the state, but refused to admit that the taxation rate is too high. He said that it is a negotiation process and speculations are not appropriate.
Source: “Seneca Gaming Corp. plans ‘Every Child Matters’ walk to honor of victims, survivors of Indigenous residential schools”, Niagara Frontier Publications, September 23, 2022