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March 23, 2021 — Ottawa, Traditional Unceded Algonquin Territory, Ontario — Indigenous Services Canada
The Government of Canada is continuing the important work in full partnership with Indigenous Peoples to reform child and family services so that every Indigenous child has the opportunity to grow up in their communities, immersed in their cultures, and surrounded by loved ones.
The Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families, celebrated its first anniversary on January 1, 2021. The Act affirms the inherent right of self-government, including jurisdiction in relation to child and family services, and aims to reduce the number of Indigenous children in care. The Act also supports the reform of First Nations, Inuit and Métis child and family services so that Indigenous communities are in the best position to support their children and families.
Today, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services Canada, announced the launch of a call for proposals to support Indigenous Peoples, communities, and groups as they begin work to develop their own legislation and explore Indigenous-led models for child and family services.
More specifically, this funding is intended to provide support to Indigenous Peoples, communities and groups wishing to:
As communities develop their laws, specific funding will also be made available for their participation in Tripartite coordination agreement discussions to further advance these models. These discussions will be essential for reaching a successful agreement between Indigenous communities, the Government of Canada, provinces, and territories to provide services to children and their families. They will also help ensure a smooth transition from the existing system to the one envisioned by Indigenous communities, free from racism and discriminatory practices.
Through this call for proposals, activities, such as community engagements, planning, research, IT systems design or communications activities , and more, can be funded. Eligible recipients are section 35 rights-holders, which include First Nations, Inuit and Métis nation groups; Indigenous governing bodies, as defined under the Act, as well as National Indigenous Organizations.
Indigenous Services Canada recognizes that not all Indigenous Peoples, communities or groups are at the same state of readiness nor have the same resources to exercise jurisdiction under the Act. To this end, this funding is available to support eligible Indigenous groups, communities or peoples as they work within and across their communities to build strong foundations in preparation for their participation in coordination agreement discussions.
“Every child matters and deserves the opportunity to thrive. The best interests of Indigenous children remain our priority; ensuring they stay connected to their communities, cultures, and languages. This funding is key to better supporting Indigenous communities in preparing to exercise jurisdiction in relation to their child and family services, as they are best placed to choose models that reflect their values and traditions.”
The Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Indigenous Services
For more information, media may contact:
Office of the Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Indigenous Services
Indigenous Services Canada