AFN chief warns lawyers may ‘take advantage’ of child welfare settlement recipients

 By Alessia Passafiume THE CANADIAN PRESS OTTAWA- The interim national chief of the Assembly of First Nations is urging those eligible to receive compensation from a landmark class-action settlement to be careful that lawyers do not try to take advantage of them. Interim national chief Joanna Bernard said she’s heard about lawyers reaching out to eligible claimants to represent them after the Federal Court approved $23 billion in compensation for more than 300,000 First Nations children and their families over chronic underfunding of on-reserve child-welfare services. Bernard said a system is in place to dole out monies, and claimants don’t need costly representation from lawyers, who she warned could try to “take advantage of our people.” “That’s not necessary,” she said. “There is a process that (claimants) can do, and it…

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