Court tosses federal bid for quash deadline on child welfare payments

court gavel

OTTAWA — The Federal Court has ruled against Ottawa’s bid to eliminate a deadline around paying compensation to First Nations’ families ripped apart by an underfunded child-welfare system.

But today’s ruling does hand the federal government a small victory by not quashing its request for a judicial review of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal decision that first ordered the compensation.

The tribunal had ordered the government to pay $40,000 to Indigenous children, as well as some relatives, who were taken from their families because of underfunded family services on reserves.

While the tribunal set a Dec. 10 deadline for the government to submit a payment plan, which was later moved to Jan. 29, 2020, the federal government wanted the court to remove any deadline.

Federal Court Justice Paul Favel rejected that request, saying in his ruling that he didn’t see a need to provide a further extension.

Yet Favel did uphold the government’s request for judicial review of the tribunal order, saying it could provide “an incentive” for all parties to reach agreement on a framework for paying the compensation.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 29, 2019.

The Canadian Press


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