N.S. Home for Colored Children victims still waiting for lawsuit payout
Published Tuesday, July 26, 2016 7:16PM ADT
Last Updated Wednesday, July 27, 2016 11:14AM ADT
The case has been settled for two years, but former residents of the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children haven't seen any payout from their class-action lawsuit.
The settlement was reached back in June of 2014. The province will be responsible for $29 million, and another $5 million from the home. The payouts are based on assessments of harm.
But former resident Stacey Beals says having to retell his story for the class-action lawsuit made him feel like a victim all over again.
“I stand disillusioned with this whole process,” said Beals. “I feel like this whole process has done more harm to me than was actually done to me.”
Beals says his settlement was originally estimated at $100,000, but now he's not sure how much he will get.
“I don't know how many people that are actually involved in the claim,” he said.
Lawyer Ray Wagner led the lawsuit, working on the case for more than a decade. He says when the class action was settled, there were about 120 plaintiffs.
“There are approximately 330 claimants that actually came forward in the claims period,” said Wagner.
Wagner says the payouts will be less than estimated and there's only so much to go around.
Beals says it’s reopened old wounds. He doesn't feel justice has been done and he wishes he never got involved.
“Take it from me, do your homework read up on it. Find out, what does a class action entail,” he said.
But other former residents say they’re happy to get this final acknowledgement of the harm that was done.
“I’ve been hearing from a lot of people. We're being very thankful because these are pennies from heaven, because we never thought we'd even get the apology let alone be compensated financially,” said former resident Tony Smith.
Smith says he hopes the restorative inquiry will provide more closure for former residents.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Sarah Ritchie.