‘Long time coming:’ Manitoba premier apologizes to two men switched at birth in 1955

Manitoba’s premier has officially apologized to two men who were switched at birth in a Manitoba hospital more than 60 years ago.

Wab Kinew stood in the Manitoba legislature to deliver the apology to Edward Ambrose and Richard Beauvais, who were born on the same day in 1955 in Arborg, Man., but went home with different parents.

“I rise today to deliver an apology that has been a long time coming, for actions that harmed two children, two sets of parents and two families across many generations,” Kinew told the two men, who were seated in the legislature Thursday afternoon.

In 2022, Beauvais, who was raised Metis, took an at-home ancestry kit he got as a gift. It came back saying he was Ukrainian and Jewish.

That same year, Ambrose’s sister also did an at-home ancestry kit. Her results showed a brother living in British Columbia, which turned out to be Beauvais.

The news upended both men’s lives as they tried to navigate their pasts and what it meant for their futures.

Ambrose later became a member of the Manitoba Metis Federation in February 2024.

The men’s case is the third known case of babies switched at birth in Manitoba.

Norman Barkman and Luke Monias of Garden Hill First Nation, a fly-in community 400 kilometres northeast of Winnipeg, revealed in 2015 that DNA tests proved they were switched at birth at the Norway House Indian Hospital in 1975.

Later, DNA tests showed two men from Norway House Cree Nation, Leon Swanson and David Tait, Jr., were switched at birth at the same hospital earlier that year.

-With files from The Canadian Press


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