BCAFN Opposes Canadian Government’s Attempt to Overturn Human Rights Tribunal Ruling on Compensation for First Nations Children and Families

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Press Release

(Lheidli T’enneh Territory, Prince George, BC – Nov. 25, 2019) - The BC Assembly of First Nations opposes the federal government’s attempt to obtain a judicial review of the recent Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) decision to compensate First Nations children and families who did not receive equitable services on reserve. Rather than claiming that the ruling is too narrow, the federal government needs to start negotiating a compensation plan immediately. The government’s judicial manipulations and arguments undermine their commitments. Their priorities must be to further the best interests of Indigenous children and families and live up to their own commitments to reconciliation.

“The federal government is using every tool available to them to avoid or delay carrying out the ruling made by the Tribunal instead of meeting their obligations to compensate these victims of their negligence. We demand the government stop playing games and start taking their responsibilities to provide equitable services to First Nations people seriously,” stated Regional Chief Terry Teegee.

In 2016, The CHRT found that the Canadian government is racially discriminating against 165,000 First Nations children and their families for its failure to provide equitable services. The CHRT cited this discrimination as “willful and reckless” and ordered Canada to pay the maximum amount allowable under the Canadian Human Rights Act. It is estimated that 54,000 children would benefit from this ruling. 

For further information, contact: 
Annette Schroeter, Communications Officer (250)962-1603

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