Human rights tribunal into how feds treat First Nation children underway - APTN NewsAPTN News

Human rights tribunal into how feds treat First Nation children underway

APTN National News
The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal is hearing a case Monday that alleges Ottawa discriminates against First Nation children through its inadequate funding of family services.

The tribunal began in the morning and is hearing from various groups with standing including the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and the Assembly of First Nations, the two organizations that filed the complaint.

Cindy Blackstock, the executive director of First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada will be the first witness.

It was Blackstock who first filed the complaint with the tribunal in 2007.

She also alleges the federal government retaliated for the complaint.

Aboriginal Affairs officials posed as “friends” to access Blackstock’s Facebook page, the tribunal has heard so far.

“For far too long there have been two villages in this nation,” said Blackstock. “The time for talking is over, the time for justice for children is now.”

APTN fought successfully in Federal Court for the right to have our cameras inside the tribunal and we will be airing stories during our nightly broadcast.

The tribunal is expected to last up to 14 weeks.

APTN National News reporter Jorge Barrera is providing live updates through his Twitter account @jorgebarrera.

More to come throughout the day.

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One Response to “Human rights tribunal into how feds treat First Nation children underway”

    Zell Artan February 25, 2013 at 6:38 pm #

    Today marks the first day of the fourteen week long United Nations Tribunal on First Nations child welfare. As a Masters of Education Student enrolled at the Schulich School of Education at Nipissing University in North Bay Ontario I am focused on Holistic approaches of Education and Co-operative community development models for First Nations Communities across Canada through the Seed to Feed to Heal Cycle.

    The top priority for the UN Tribunalon Frist Nation child welfare besides Education is to help improve the overall Health and welfare of First Nations children. Healing begins with peace of mind, body, soul and spirit and the First Nations People of Canada are still repairing from the damage of the residential school catastrophe.

    The United Nations is calling for the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger by 2015. Many First Nations children are suffering due to the lack of healthy clean water and food. Health and welfare is paramount, Education is second, however peace of mind needs to be addressed and if healing is to be possible then we must have healthy bodies and healthy minds functioning within our schools and communities.

    Moving forward means bringing peace to the communities that have been torn apart due to cultural genocide, teen suicides, drug and alcohol addictions, diabetes and obesity issues.
    Poverty and welfare issues lead to lack of healthy food for most first Nations families. Through education we can teach First Nations children and their families how to grow, and harvest their own traditional medicine plants and Heirloom Vegetables. This will provide a valuable source of healthy nutritious food locally and will in effect heal and bring overall health and longevity to the communities. Schools for the future should incorporate new learning grounds for elders and children to play and learn together their culture in schools of healing and peace while growing older, stronger healthier
    together by saving seeds for seven generations.

    Health requires fitness and activity and reconnecting with nature is an integral part of learning and preservation of the cultural heritage of First Nations. Healthy children mean healthy diets and the access to fresh produce, forest medicines and other functional foods for First Nations people should be addressed so that all First Nations can access fresh food daily in the appropriate recommended servings. Healthy fresh
    produce will help detox one’s body and rebuild it into a healthier one, free of
    sugary, starchy foods that are the cause of diabetes and obesity.

    Definition of Food Security according
    to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization is as follows;

    “Food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic
    access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and
    food preferences for an active and healthy life.”

    How will this be solved?

    Our Canadian Government must start to implement the guiding principles set out by the United Nations that will ensure First Nations and Indigenous peoples of
    the world live better today and always. United Nations Declaration on the
    rights of Indigenous Peoples is a framework document that should be followed by
    all nations all the time.