Spread the love

Money for children: Manitoba to pay $530 million

Open in full screen mode

In 2020, a child walks in front of signs condemning the provincial government for withholding hundreds of millions of dollars that critics say should have been redirected to Child and Family Services agencies and authorities. The provincial government reached a settlement in 2024 to end three class action lawsuits.

  • Catherine Moreau (View profile)Catherine Moreau

Speech synthesis, based on artificial intelligence, makes it possible to generate spoken text from written text.

Manitoba has agreed to pay $530 million to settle a class action over federal money that was intended for children and that the provincial government had kept.

This tentative agreement, which still requires court approval, follows a 2022 ruling and is the result of three certified class action lawsuits. The Manitoba Progressive Conservative government then decided not to appeal this decision.

A Court of King's Bench judge ruled that the Manitoba government had misappropriated federal funding intended for children in the province's care. The decision also ruled in favor of plaintiffs who claimed that Manitoba's policies discriminated against Indigenous children since they constitute nearly 90% of children in care.

The recent settlement is an important victory for First Nations and Métis children in Manitoba, said former senator and chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Murray Sinclair.

This settlement holds the province accountable for its unfair treatment of vulnerable children, added the Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, Cathy Merrick.

LoadingQuebec office in Tel-Aviv: a first discreet mission for the head of post

ELSE ON INFO: Quebec office in Tel-Aviv: a first discreet mission for the head of postLoading in coursQuebec office in Tel Aviv: a first discreet mission for the head of post

ELSE ON INFO: Quebec office in Tel-Aviv: a first discreet mission for the head of post

It's an important message for all governments across Canada regarding children's rights, thinks the director of the Animikii Ozoson Child and Family Services Agency, Trudy Lavallee.

The lawsuit was filed in 2018 by a group of Indigenous child welfare agencies.

Between 2006 and 2019, the Manitoba government asked child service agencies to transfer money from the Allowance Special Child Care (ASE), claiming that these sums were due to her, since the province financed the care of the children she supported.

This policy was implemented by the New Democratic Party (NDP) government in 2006, then abolished by the Progressive Conservative government in 2019.

Prior to 2006, some agencies put a portion of federal funds in a trust for children to access once they exited the system.

This money was supposed to go towards the advancement of some of the most vulnerable children in our society, and it was taken away from them. This settlement is an example of how our government prioritizes reconciliation through action, said the provincial Minister of Families, Nahanni Fontaine, in a press release on Monday.

Open in full screen mode

Manitoba Families Minister Nahanni Fontaine

In 2021, the plaintiffs' lawyer, Kris Saxberg, claimed in court that the province had orchestrated a money theft when he forced child welfare agencies to hand over hundreds of millions of federal dollars intended for vulnerable Indigenous children in care.

This settlement will compensate all children affected by the CSA policy, including interest and additional amounts for other damages and costs through the creation of ;a resolution fund, says Mr. Saxberg’s office. He adds that this settlement is a significant step towards redressing the discrimination suffered by children in care.

All the money will go to the children, assures the manager of Child and Family Services at the Manitoba Metis Federation, Mona Buors

She does not hesitate to talk about the rectification of an injustice. It's historic because finally the children are going to have what they should have had, sums up- her.

Similar lawsuits have been filed in Saskatchewan and Alberta.

With information from Anne-Louise Michel and Ilrick Duhamel

  • Catherine Moreau (View profile)Catherine MoreauFollow
Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116