Current Problems

Child Welfare (1-5)

Federal Government’s Protective Appeal

October 29, 2021

Toronto Star – The federal government has launched a “protective appeal” of the Federal Court’s Sept. 29, 2021 decision dismissing Ottawa’s appeals of two human rights tribunal rulings concerning First Nations child welfare compensation and protection. The court upheld a 2019 ruling of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal that ordered Ottawa to pay $40,000 — the maximum amount permitted under the Canadian Human Rights Act — to thousands of First Nations children and their families and that expanded the eligibility criteria for Jordan’s Principle. The government’s actions put a pause on litigation to try and negotiate an out-of-court settlement with the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and the Assembly of First Nations.

Ottawa has now agreed to work toward a “global resolution” by December 2021 on several issues that have been subject to litigation:

  • Providing fair compensation to affected First Nations children who were removed from their homes and affected by the “narrow” scope of Jordan’s Principle;
  • achieving long-term reform of the First Nations Child and Family Service program; and
  • funding that would support Jordan’s Principle and the delivery of relevant services on reserve.