Canada discriminates against children on reserves, tribunal rules

There is breaking news this morning on the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal case filed by the Assembly of First Nations and Dr. Cindy Blackstock who serves as the Executive director of the First Nations and Family Caring Society. She is a keynote at our Best Start conference this year. Here is some key information from the announcement:

  • The complaint alleged that the support the Federal government provides for child welfare on reserves is much lower than what kids off reserves get from provincial governments. Less funding for family support means more kids end up in the child welfare system. The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal agreed that the funding model "resulted in denials of services and created various adverse impacts for many First Nations children and families living on reserves".
  • The decision also highlights that the government must "cease the discriminatory practice and take measures to redress and prevent it" including the redesign of the child welfare system and its funding model.
  • Dr. Blackstock commented before the decision was announced: “I can't even believe we had to file a case against the Canadian government so First Nations children have the same chance to grow up in their families as other kids get”.
  • The First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada and the Assembly of First Nations will respond to the tribunal's decision during a press conference which will be held in Ottawa at 1 p.m. ET.