SCO and SFNNC Have Serious Concerns about Advocate Report Process
The Southern Chiefs’ Organization and the Southern First Nations Network of Care are very concerned about why the Children’s Advocate is releasing confidential information in her reports, and we do not support this action. We are concerned about the impact this information will have on the surviving family members, including the siblings in this family. Our concerns are growing greater with each report she releases and in her most recent report we believe she has breached Charter Rights of the surviving family members, and the breach of privacy and other human rights as declared by the United Nations, with respect to humans generally (in 1948) and regarding children specifically (1992).
The publication of this special report by the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth has set a tone in which the process she used to create this report does not respect guiding principles and legislation. Principles such as using a trauma informed approached that have been established to protect Indigenous children and their families, who have been systematically and historically targeted by colonial-informed practices. “The fact is, this ‘special report’ clearly violates section 76 TheCFS Act which calls for anonymity for protection purposes, so as not to cause further injury to the family, and in particular to children within that family,” says SCO Grand Chief Jerry Daniels.
Additionally, in this ‘special report’, Articles 3, 12, and 16 of the Convention of the Rights of the Child as they relate to the surviving siblings in this family were not upheld. These articles specifically relate to a child’s right to have adults make decisions in their best interests, the right to provide an opinion, and the right to privacy. “The ‘special report’ did not commit through its process to respect the rights, interests, and viewpoints of First Nations children and youth, and to work collaboratively with First Nations families, child and family services agencies and authorities, community-based organizations, communities and leadership on systemic issues that contribute to the overrepresentation of Indigenous children, youth and families in the child and family services system,” says Tara Petti, CEO of the SFNNC.