OTTAWA – Canada’s Federal Court has dismissed a judicial review into a landmark human rights tribunal compensation order for First Nations children. Justice Paul Favel said, “The Attorney General of Canada had not succeeded in establishing that the compensation decision is unreasonable.”
This decision has the federal government now responsible for billions of dollars in compensation in the cases in the child welfare system.
The federal government tried to convince the Federal Court that the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal had overreached its jurisdiction and that the tribunal was in error when the CHRT ordered the federal government to pay $40,000, which is the maximum settlement allowed under the legislation. Those payments would go to every child affected by the on-reserve child welfare system since 2006.
Favel stated that, “the Human Rights Tribunal reasonably exercised its discretion under the Act to handle a complex case of discrimination to ensure that all issues were sufficiently dealt with and that the issue of compensation was addressed in phases.”
The federal government has been fighting this case brought by the First Nations Children and Family Caring Society for years. Cindy Blackstock said, “Federal Court dismisses both federal government appeals- the Tribunal’s compensation decision and decision for First Nations kids off reserve get help under Jordan’s Principle stand!”