October 29, 2021
(Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C.) The First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC) is disgusted, yet not surprised, to learn of Canada’s decision today to appeal the Federal Court ruling of Justice Favel that upheld the rulings of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) to compensate First Nations children, and their families, for the “willful and reckless” discrimination that incentivized the forced removal of thousands of First Nations children from their families and underfunded child and family services in First Nations communities.
In 2016 the CHRT issued a landmark decision, finding that Canada was discriminating against First Nations children, families and communities through inequitable funding formulas for First Nations child and family services. Since the 2016 ruling, the CHRT has issued over 30 non-compliance orders that Canada has repeatedly appealed. The September 29th decision of Justice Favel which dismissed two of Canada’s appeals also made strong statements regarding Canada’s positive obligations to reconciliation with First Nations. Although Canada indicated today that they have filed a “protective appeal” and intend to negotiate, their filings indicate a broad and full appeal of the Tribunals compensation decision.