Canada News

Get the latest new in Candada


Treaty 8 First Nations in Alberta creates law replacing government authority over children

A confederation of First Nations that includes 23 in northern Alberta has established a new law it says replaces “all government authority” over its children.

The Sovereign First Nations of Treaty No. 8 in Alberta said in a media release Friday that the Nehiyaw and Dene Nations of Treaty No. 8 Adoption and Private Guardianship Law now protects its member children “ensuring they cannot be taken without written and willing consent from the child’s parents or guardians and (from their) First Nation.”

Grand Chief Ivan Sawan said the group introduced the law, while it continues to develop its own child and family services laws, “to protect our children and youth.”

“Currently, our children are being stolen from our Nations,” Sawan said in the release.

“The current government process of adoption and private guardianship continues to have devastating cultural effects stripping children of their identity and diminishing inherent Treaty rights.”

A spokesperson for the Alberta government said in a statement the province understands and supports “the importance of ensuring Indigenous children and youth can stay connected to their families, communities, and culture.”

“We remain committed to the ongoing work with Indigenous communities towards reconciliation and meaningful change,” Ashli Barrett, press secretary for the office of the minister of children and family services, said in the statement.

“We will continue to focus on ensuring children in care, both on and off reserve, are safe and continue to receive the supports they need.”

The province said the child and family services ministry has already transferred authority to four Alberta First Nations, including three that are a part of Treaty 8. 

View original article here Source