TORONTO, Sept. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - Irwin Elman, Ontario's Children and
Youth Advocate, will file a motion seeking leave to the Federal Court
of Appeal on September 24th, 2012 in a case about equitable child
welfare funding and services for First Nations children. The Provincial
Advocate is opposing the Federal Government's appeal from a court
decision that held the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal should hear the
complaint filed by the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of
Canada and the Assembly of First Nations. The complaint alleges that
the Federal Government's funding scheme provides poorer quality child
welfare services for First Nations children than the services other
Canadian children receive.
"The Human Rights Tribunal is supposed to hear a case which echoes the
voices of First Nations children including those living in Ontario.
Those voices should be heard." said Mr. Elman, "This is a children's
rights issue not simply an issue about funding and jurisdictions. The
best interest of children needs to be given consideration in the
On its appeal, Canada is arguing that to compare the services First
Nations children receive with those other Canadians receive is "beyond
the jurisdiction" of the human rights tribunal.
"This is exactly what a human rights tribunal is for. This case should
be heard on its merits, and then the human rights tribunal can look at
the evidence and decide whether or not First Nations children are being
treated fairly," said Mr. Elman. "This is about how we want to treat
children in our society, and about what we believe is fair."
The Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth provides an
independent voice for children and youth, focusing on the best interest
and rights of Ontario's young people in child welfare care. The
Advocate's office partners with young people to bring the important
issues affecting them forward to be heard.
"Young people need to know we are here for them, and I hope our
involvement will demonstrate that we are here for the First Nations
children who are involved with the child welfare system and that their
needs and rights matter," said Mr. Elman.
Media is invited to join the Provincial Advocate at the Federal Court of
Appeal. Mr. Elman will be available to answer any questions regarding
Date: Monday, September 24, 2012
Location: Federal Court: 180 Queen Street West, Toronto (In front of the
building, east side)
SOURCE: Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth
For further information:
Lilian Kim, Communications - Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth at 416-325-1528 or firstname.lastname@example.org