Standing with First Nations children should be the first thing on the list for the Minister of Justice and Attorney General today

Ottawa, ON – In a few days, the Federal Government of Canada will take First Nations children back to court in an effort to dismiss a compensation order by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT). On his first day as Canada’s Minister of Justice and Attorney General, the Honourable David Lametti should drop its application for judicial review and stay of the ruling and work with the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society to develop a plan for children, youth, and families to access compensation.
As organizations committed to the well-being of all children and to the respect of children’s rights, we have been witnesses to the CHRT case of First Nations child welfare and Jordan’s Principle.
We witnessed as Canada’s conduct was found to be wilful and reckless in discriminating against First Nations children in care.
We witnessed when Canada was ordered to pay compensation for those who were wrongly removed from their families or denied essential services.
And we witnessed Canada file for judicial review, opting to continue to fight First Nations children in court.
In our work, we have witnessed the effects of the harm of Canada’s discrimination in child and family services.
We are prepared to be a witness again on November 25th and 26th, when children head back to court to ask that the government respect their right to safety, family, and culture.
But we would rather witness justice.
Today, on your first day as Minister of Justice and Attorney General, we ask that you act in the best interest of children. Please honour the CHRT ruling, drop Canada’s judicial review, and act without delay to compensate the First Nations children, youth and families Canada has harmed.
Signed by,
Amnesty International
A Way Home Canada
Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada
Broadbent Institute
Campaign 2000
Canadian Association of Social Workers
Canadian Coalition for the Rights Children
Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions
Canadian Observatory on Homelessness
Child Welfare League of Canada
Children First Canada
Children’s Aid Society of Toronto
Elizabeth Fry Society of Greater Vancouver
First Nations Child and Family Caring Society
Indigenous Bar Association
Native Child and Family Services of Toronto
Newfoundland and Labrador Foster Family Association
Students Commission of Canada
Women’s Shelters Canada
YMCA Canada
Youth in Care Canada
Media contacts:
Rachel Gouin, Executive Director, Child Welfare League of Canada
Ashley Bach, President, Youth in Care Canada
613-791-0361 (cell)