• Ottawa changes its mind on UNDRIP, but it is taking a risk

    Ms. Bennett says her government does not agree that “free, prior and informed consent” adds up to an Indigenous veto on development but, rather, that it is about “making decisions together.” “It means not putting some fully baked project in front of people and getting them to vote yes or no,” she said.

  • To improve Indigenous health, change expectations

    We have created a state of perpetual crisis for many First Nations. Yet, in recent decades, we have become more benevolent; we have started responding to these crises, especially when things get so dire they pop up in the mainstream media, i.e. La Loche, Attawapiskat, Kashechewan, etc. But all we’ve done really is become more efficient at responding to crises, not at fixing fundamental structural problems

  • Residential school story becoming over-simplified, says chief Douglas Todd

    … it seems the further the reality of the schools fades into the past the more over-simplified the national narrative becomes. Partisanship, positioning and rhetoric seems to be taking precedence over “truth” or even “reconciliation.” … the vast majority of aboriginals, suggests Miller, are like Gosnell and Calder: They emerged intact from the schools and remain Christian, with many syncretistically mixing their faith in Jesus Christ with native spiritual traditions.

  • Canadian Human Rights Commission says children left behind on basic rights

    The report looked at issues such as child welfare services on First Nations reserves, the rights of transgender children, children with disabilities and migrant children locked up in detention centres alongside their parents as the system processes their cases… 60 per cent related to disability. Almost half the disability complaints dealt with mental health issues.

  • Amnesty International honours Canada’s Indigenous-rights movement

    Amnesty International describes the Ambassador of Conscience Award as its highest honour, given annually to those who show courage in standing up to injustice. In announcing the award, Amnesty underlined the fact that although they live in a prosperous country, Canada’s Indigenous peoples are “consistently among the most marginalized members of society.”

  • Police oversight isn’t broken, it was built this way

    Thanks to Justice Michael Tulloch, who led the review and published his report last week, we have new clarity on the strategic dysfunction that is the SIU. Tulloch has made 129 recommendations for better police oversight, including dozens for the SIU. Many of Tulloch’s recommendations are painfully obvious… The tradition of having former police investigate current ones helps to explain why more than 97 per cent of all SIU investigations end without an officer being criminally charged.

  • $5B housing pledge aims to help most vulnerable National Housing

    … the focus would be on supporting the most vulnerable Canadians, which in addition to people struggling with mental health, addictions and domestic abuse also includes seniors, persons with disabilities and veterans… The national strategy… will also include $3 billion dedicated towards strengthening the relationship between provinces and territories, targeted funding for northern communities and Indigenous communities… and increased funding to prevent and reduce homelessness.

  • South Africa’s postapartheid journey offers ‘important insights’ for Canada: Justice Minister

    “It is hard to celebrate 150 years of colonialism,” she said in a speech at the University of Cape Town’s law school. “What we need to do is make a 180-degree turn, so that our laws and policies are pointing in the direction of the future of reconciliation and transformation – not the past of colonization.” … South Africa has also created a high-level panel… to assess more than 1,000 post-apartheid laws to see if they do enough to tackle the problems of poverty and inequality… Ms. Wilson-Raybould met the former president to see what she can learn from the panel’s work

  • Who pays when native children fall between the cracks?

    Yes, indigenous children must receive medical and social services equal to other Canadians. A tribunal can define those rights, but the precise details of where the money comes from, and where it goes, must largely be left to negotiations among Ottawa, the provinces and First Nations.

  • Ottawa hasn’t earned trust on indigenous child welfare

    The government should do as it promised and, as the tribunal’s legally binding order demands, immediately close the funding gap… Ottawa’s slow response has been a persistent source of shame, particularly for a government that so often touts its lofty promises on indigenous issues… energy would be better spent protecting the health and safety of indigenous children than pushing back at the tribunal.