It is recommended that all representatives who participated in the Emergency Meeting work towards the following goals:
- Collaborate on a national child welfare data strategy, led by the federal government in partnership with provincial, territorial and First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation partners aimed at increasing inter-jurisdictional data collection, sharing and reporting to better understand the rates and reasons for apprehension.
This national strategy must be community-based, strengths-based research driven by First Nations, Inuit and the Métis, consistent with the OCAP Principles and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Data collected must be disaggregated by First Nations, Métis and Inuit and by gender, sexual orientation and disability in order to lead to effective service provision.
- Collaborate on data standards, reporting mechanisms and information-sharing agreements to ensure they are reflective of First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, families and communities.
- Share best research practices that demonstrate improved outcomes for First Nations, Inuit and Métis children and families, directly linked to community involvement, control in service governance design and delivery, and culturally relevant programming.
The rich dialogues that occurred over the two-day Emergency Meeting on Indigenous Child and Family Services: Children and Families Together focused on the strong commitment to change the current crisis facing Indigenous child and family services in Canada, where too often First Nations, Inuit and Métis children are put in harm’s way, denied the support, love and protection they need and deserve.
This report is meant to capture the concrete reforms identified by the Government of Canada, along with provincial, territorial, First Nations, Inuit and Métis leaders, Elders, youth, community service organizations and advocates that will urgently address the child welfare crisis in Canada. It is hoped that the outcomes identified in this meeting with be achieved and fully implemented so that every Indigenous child in Canada lives a safe, healthy, happy life, free to experience their cultures, languages and ways of life in their own homes and communities.
As of fall 2018, the Government of Canada is working with provinces, territories and Indigenous partners to develop a data and reporting strategy that will help provide a more complex picture of the outcomes of children in care and the challenges experienced by Indigenous children and family, to inform future service delivery improvements.