RCY Releases Damning Report Delegated Aboriginal Agencies: How resourcing affects service delivery
April 03, 2017
(Coast Salish Territory/Vancouver) On March 30, 2017, the Representative for Children and Youth (RCY) submitted another damning report to the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia, highlighting the federal and provincial government’s discriminatory and deplorable treatment of Indigenous children in care.
The RCY continues to hold to account the BC government on its inability to provide equitable funding and services to Indigenous children, particularly regarding its funding of BC’s 23 Delegated Aboriginal Agencies.
The current DAA funding model undermines their capacity to deliver essential services to vulnerable children and families.
The 2016 Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) decision on child welfare practices in First Nations communities on reserves, across Canada, found the federal government’s funding model for Indigenous child welfare was fundamentally flawed, racist and in violation of the Canadian Human Rights Act. To this day, Canada remains non-compliant in BC.
Rather than preventing the apprehension of our children the federal and provincial funding models make it more likely that Indigenous children will be removed from their families, which undoubtedly contributes to the gross over-representation of Indigenous children in care.
The First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC) calls upon the governments of Canada and BC to immediately review and renew their unjustifiably ineffective funding models and to better support Indigenous children and families throughout BC.
The First Nations Leadership Council is comprised of the political executives of the BC Assembly of First Nations, First Nations Summit, and the Union of BC Indian Chiefs.
Quote from Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President, Union of BC Indian Chiefs:
“An Indigenous child is 17 times more likely to be in care than a non-Indigenous child. How much longer are First Nations expected to wait for the governments of BC and Canada to finally respect the rights of Indigenous peoples? How many reports must be written, how many more children in care must suffer sexual abuse, grievous physical harm or lose their lives before these politicians realize their approach to Indigenous child welfare is fundamentally flawed and entirely ineffective?”
Quote from Cheryl Casimer, Political Executive, First Nations Summit:
“We commend the RCY for his latest report, which identifies challenges First Nations face in obtaining equitable funding for our Children and Families. It has been well over a year since the CHRT decision was released, and it is extremely disappointing and saddening that this significant decision has not been fully respected, upheld and implemented by the federal government. First Nations in BC have been clear and will continue to urge the federal and provincial governments to work proactively with us to address the fiscal inequities, deficiencies in human resource capacity and overall child and family funding inadequacies that were clearly identified in both the RCY report and the January 2016 CHRT decision.”
Quote from Acting Regional Chief Maureen Chapman, BC Assembly of First Nations:
“The Representative of Children and Youth has shone a flashlight on the inequitable funding for our children and youth agencies in BC as well as the significant challenges our communities face as a result of these inequities. This is simply unacceptable. We must breathe life into the Truth and Reconciliation Calls to Action regarding the improvement and reform of Indigenous child welfare system with the substantive funding and support needed to ensure our children and families are protected, safe, secure and thriving. We continue to call on governments to fully invest in the transformational change required to improve BC’s child Welfare system.”
For further comment please contact:
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President, Union of BC Indian Chiefs: 604-684-0231 Cheryl Casimer, First Nations Summit Political Executive: 778-875-2157 A/Regional Chief Maureen Chapman, BC Assembly of First Nations: 604-819-2072 Melanie Debassige, Chief of Staff, BC Assembly of First Nations: 250-299-6892