Timmins-James MP calls on federal government to stop fighting Indigenous children in court

·2 min read

Timmins-James Bay Charlie Angus is calling on the federal government to end court battles against Indigenous children.

Today, the federal government returned to federal court to quash two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings that compensate eligible victims of the child welfare system and extend eligibility for Jordan’s Principle.

Jordan’s Principle is a legal rule ensuring all First Nations children living in Canada have access to services when they need them.

The court hearings will be held from June 14 to June 18.

Angus and NDP leader Jagmeet Singh held a brief media conference Monday voicing their concerns with the Liberal government’s decision to return to court.

“The government believes they’re the wrong party here. And what we’re talking about is the lives of the children. We lose a child every three days to this rotten underfunded system,” Angus said. “And nobody at the federal level has ever given a damn or made any substantive change.”

In 2007, the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada (Caring Society) filed a human rights complaint against Canada claiming that services in on-reserve First Nations communities and in the Yukon were discriminatory.

The Chiefs of Ontario, Amnesty International, Nishnawbe Aski Nation and the Canadian Human Rights Commission were also part of the case.

In 2016, the Tribunal ordered Canada to cease its discriminatory practice and take measures to redress and prevent it.

According to the Caring Society, since 2016, the Tribunal has issued 19 more non-compliance and procedural orders.

“We’re calling on the government to end this now, sit down and recognize that these are not historic harms. These are ongoing harms that are happening today,” Angus said.

Dariya Baiguzhiyeva, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, TimminsToday.com

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