Last updated on April 16, 2014 at 8:52 EDT

Canadian Government faces allegations of discrimination towards First Nations Children at Canadian Human Rights Tribunal

February 22, 2013

OTTAWA, Feb. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ – On February 25, 2013, the Government of
Canada will appear before the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal to face 14
weeks of hearings to determine if its flawed and inequitable First
Nations child and family services program is discriminatory. The
federal government controls and funds child and family services on
reserves where as the provinces and territories do so for other
children. The Auditor General of Canada and other expert reports
confirm that the federal government’s funding and program approaches to
child and family services, including the more recent enhanced funding
approach, are flawed and inequitable.

There is clear evidence linking the inequality in services to hardship
among First Nations families and to the growing numbers of First
Nations children in care. Dr. Blackstock said, “This generation of
First Nations children deserve an equal chance to grow up safely at
home – something the Federal Government deprived many of their parents
and grandparents of during the residential school era.”

The complaint was filed with the Canadian Human Rights Commission in
2007 by the Assembly of First Nations and First Nations Child and
Family Caring Society after the Government of Canada failed to
implement two evidence informed solutions to address the problem. Since
then the Government of Canada has spent over 3 million dollars in its
numerous unsuccessful efforts to get the case dismissed.

Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada, said,
“This case is important for everyone concerned about human rights.  The
outcome will affect both the quality of vitally important services
available to First Nations children as well as the integrity of human
rights protection in Canada.”

Nathalie Des Rosiers, General Counsel for the Canadian Civil Liberties
Association (CCLA) says “It is very important that this case move
forward, and that issues of discrimination be promptly addressed. What
is at stake in this case is the integrity of our human rights regime
and its ability to respond meaningfully to allegations of


Source: PR Newswire