Today, on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Prevention and Support Day, I want to acknowledge the voices and experiences of children and youth with FASD.
FASD is a diverse neurological condition that affects each person differently. Those with FASD face some incredible challenges, but each child and youth also has individual strengths, talents and abilities.
Today's Canadian Human Rights Tribunal (CHRT) ruling represents a tangible recognition of the horrendous human rights violations that have been inflicted upon First Nations, Métis and Inuit children and families. This ruling, that orders compensation for First Nations children and some parents and grandparents affected by a discriminatory on-reserve child welfare system, is long overdue. After all the stalling and resistance, it’s about time the federal government honoured the 2016 CHRT ruling on First Nations child welfare.
This is the fifth adoption and permanency options update RCY has released, following the Office’s 2014 in-depth review of the B.C. adoption system. At the time of the first report, the Representative committed to periodic follow-ups regarding the government’s progress on the adoption front. This is the last of those updates.
VICTORIA – Three Canadians who have dedicated their lives to public service with a focus on children and youth were honoured recently by the Janusz Korczak Association of Canada during a ceremony at Government House.
The Representative for Children and Youth (RCY) can now advocate for more young adults who have aged out of government care following a regulatory change that expands the Office’s legal mandate.
Young adults up to their 24th birthdays who have aged out of care and who are on or eligible for an Agreement with Young Adults (AYA), or who are on or eligible for a provincial post-secondary tuition waiver, can now work with RCY advocates if they need help or advice.
The very thorough and comprehensive report entitled Oversight of Contracted Residential Services for Children and Youth in Care that was released last week by British Columbia’s Auditor General Carol Bellringer raises serious concerns – yet again – about a system of contracted residential services for children and youth in care that is no system at all and which continues to be beset by a litany of shortcomings.
This National Indigenous Peoples Day, it is more important than ever that we use the occasion to take action towards reconciliation. This is not symbolic, nor is it simply an aspirational goal. As recent initiatives such as the National Inquiry into Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls have so clearly shown, it’s time for every one of us to do something, because good intentions are not enough.
The release of the final report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls is an important milestone for social justice in Canada. This exhaustive document, comprising more than 1,000 pages, explains why Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQQIA individuals have been, and continue to be, subject to horrendous violence, abuse and overarching injustices in our society.
This is the ninth consecutive year that British Columbia is marking Child and Youth in Care Week, a time to honour young people living in the care of the government. As it is the first such occasion for me as your Representative, I want to pass on this important message directly to the more than 6,000 of you in various forms of care:
Children’s rights in Canada were under siege in 2018. Young people who are marginalized, vulnerable and involved with government systems, saw their rights curtailed and voices silenced. It is imperative that Canadians join us to demand their governments act to advance and uphold the rights of children and youth. To not take action is to fail them.