Grand Chief Responds to Minister O’Regan’s Announcement on CFS Legislation

Media Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 28th, 2019

Grand Chief responds to Minister O’Regan’s announcement on CFS legislation.

ANISHINAABE TERRITORY, MB –SCO Grand Chief Jerry Daniels indicated that Bill C-92 “An Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Metis child, youth and families” has not respected the process of transparency and co-development as set out in the Phase 1 of the legislative process.

“Our priority is and has always been the Anishinaabe and Dakota families and children’s rights as inherent, portable and sovereign.”, Grand Chief Daniels stated, “It is disconcerting that the tabling of the legislation was not made in the spirit of the stated aims of co-development including adhering to UNDRIP articles specific to consulting and cooperating in good faith, to legislative measures to achieve the ends of this Declaration (UNDRIP).”

Currently, Manitoba has one of the highest rates of off-reserve apprehension of children which amounts to approximately 80% of the children in care in the province. The combination of a complex relationship between the federal Indian Act and provincial jurisdiction over First Nation children and youth off-reserve has resulted in a humanitarian crisis. The Southern Chiefs’ Organization is the appointing rights holder to the Southern Authority Network of Care board, and represents 34 First Nations.

“We must look at the way that the systems can work together to ensure that all First Nation children have the opportunity to receive the supports and services for improved life outcomes. We are intent on ending the systemic cycles which have contributed to this humanitarian crisis.” Grand Chief Daniels adds.

For further information, please contact Kate Kent, at (204) 946-1869 or via email at Kate.kent@scoinc.mb.ca.