The Assembly of First Nations (AFN) and the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society filed a complaint under the Canadian Human Rights Act stating the Government of Canada was discriminating against First Nations children and families by underfunding the First Nations Child and Family Services Program (FNCFS) on-reserve and in the Yukon, and by applying a narrow interpretation of Jordan’s Principle.
The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) agreed with the complainants in a landmark decision and ordered the federal government to end its discrimination, immediately reform the FNCFS Program, and fully implement Jordan’s Principle.
At the request of the Assembly of First Nations (AFN), the CHRT issued a Compensation Decision ordering the Government of Canada to pay eligible First Nations children and their parents and caregivers $40,000 in compensation. Included in the decision were First Nations children on-reserve and in the Yukon who were necessarily and unnecessarily removed from their homes from 2006 onwards, and First Nations children who were denied the essential services and other supports they needed, or received them after a delay, because the Government of Canada applied a narrow interpretation of Jordan’s Principle. Two class action lawsuits were also filed, including one by the AFN, and another by Moushoom/Trout seeking compensation for First Nations children and family members who were discriminated against through underfunding of the FNCFS Program and narrow application of Jordan’s Principle. These class actions concern compensation back to 1991, which means they cover more First Nations children and caregivers than the CHRT’s orders.
The Government of Canada agreed to enter negotiations to settle the class action lawsuits.
The Assembly of First Nations (AFN), the Government of Canada and Moushoom/Trout signed an Agreement-in-Principle that outlined $20 billion in compensation for First Nations children and families impacted by the discriminatory funding practices of the federal FNCFS program and its narrow implementation of Jordan’s Principle.
June 30, 2022
Final Settlement Agreement on compensation is the result of the dedicated efforts that took place over many years.
August 19, 2022
Announcement that the plaintiffs and Canada have agreed to a Settlement that requires that Canada pay $20 billion in compensation. Notice is issued to class members so that they can understand the Settlement and decide whether they wish to receive compensation or opt-out.
The hearing has been postponed.
On October 25, 2022, the CHRT announced that it has not approved the First Nations Child and Family Services and Jordan’s Principle Class Action Settlement.
On April 19, 2023, the First Nations Child and Family Services, Jordan’s Principle, and Trout Class Settlement Agreement is revised.
On July 26, 2023, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal approves the revised Settlement Agreement.
The hearing is scheduled to take place in Ottawa on October 23, 2023.