AFN says it secured extra $3 billion from Ottawa for child welfare compensation

Assembly of First Nations National Chief RoseAnne Archibald opened the assembly in Ottawa Monday, April 4, 2023

OTTAWA- The Assembly of First Nations says it has secured an extra $3 billion from the federal government in a historic child-welfare compensation case.

The assembly, along with the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society, announced the money today as part of a revised compensation package now totalling $23 billion, which it plans to present to chiefs gathered this week in Ottawa.

Last year the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rejected the $20-billion compensation package the government had negotiated with the parties, which threw the settlement into question.

The tribunal had expressed concerns about whether all children would received the $40,000 it says they are owed and noted worries about the timelines for claimants to opt out.

The compensation is one part of a $40-billion deal the federal government struck with tribunal complainants and two related class actions over its underfunding of on-reserve child welfare, with the remaining $20 billion for long-term reforms.

The assembly says once chiefs weigh in on the revised settlement package it will be subject to approvals from both the tribunal and Federal Court.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 3, 2023.

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