END DISCRIMINATION AGAINST FIRST NATIONS CHILDREN
October 26th, 2016 - 2:59pm
OTTAWA – Today, the NDP announced that it will put the issue of First Nations child welfare to a vote in Parliament as an opposition day motion in the coming days. New Democrats are calling on the government to comply with the historic ruling of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ordering the end of discrimination against First Nations children.
“It is shameful that the government is still fighting Indigenous families in court. It is an indictment of the Liberal's failure to appropriately respond to racial discrimination of Indigenous children who are seeking access to services covered by the government,” said NDP Indigenous and Northern Affairs Critic Charlie Angus (Timmins – James Bay). “What is clear is that Canada will never be the country it was meant to be as long as these patterns of denying support to the most vulnerable children remain part of the operating culture of government.”
The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal has ruled that the government discriminates against First Nations children in its delivery of child welfare services on reserves. Since the ruling, the Tribunal has issued two compliance orders to compel the Liberals to act.
“The Liberals have repeatedly committed to a new relationship with Indigenous Peoples. Yet, instead of ending this discrimination, the Liberal government has continued to fight the full implementation of this ruling in court,” added Angus. “Is this what the most important relationship to the Prime Minister is supposed to look like? The government needs to follow their promises with clear action.”
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The following motion will be debated in the House on Thursday, October 27, 2016:
That the House call on the government to comply with the historic ruling of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ordering the end of discrimination against First Nations children, including by:
a) immediately investing an additional $155 million in new funding for the delivery of child welfare that has been identified as the shortfall this year alone, and establishing a funding plan for future years that will end the systemic shortfalls in First Nations child welfare;
b) implementing the full definition of Jordan's Principle as outlined in a resolution passed by the House on December 12, 2007;
c) fully complying with all orders made by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal and committing to stop fighting Indigenous families in court who are seeking access to services covered by the federal government, and;
d) making public all pertinent documents related to the overhaul of child welfare and the implementation of Jordan's Principle.