Final settlement agreement on Compensation and Agreement-in-Principle for long-term reform of First Nations Child and Family Services and Jordan's Principle
Update on the final settlement agreement on compensation, the agreement-in-principle on long-term reform of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program and on a long-term approach for Jordan's Principle, and the implementation of immediate measures
On this page
- Who the Parties are
- Long-term reform
- Next steps
- Immediate measures
- Funding for capital assets
- New funding for housing on reserves to support prevention initiatives
- Latest news
On January 4, 2022, the Government of Canada announced that 2 Agreements-in-Principle had been reached:
- on a global resolution related to compensation for those harmed by discriminatory underfunding of First Nations Child and Family Services
- to achieve long-term reform of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program and Jordan's Principle, to ensure that no child faces discrimination again
The Agreement-in-Principle on compensation included $20 billion in compensation for First Nations children on-reserve and in the Yukon, who were removed from their homes, and for their parents and caregivers. It also included compensation for those impacted by the government's narrow definition of Jordan's Principle, as well as for children who did not receive or were delayed receiving an essential public service or product.
The Agreement-in-Principle on long-term reform included approximately $20 billion, over five years, for the long-term reform of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program to ensure that the discrimination found by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal never repeats itself. This included funding to support young First Nations adults aging out of the child welfare system and prevention services to help children and families residing on-reserve to stay together. There is also new funding for on-reserve housing to support prevention initiatives.
Who the Parties are
The Parties involved in the negotiation of a final settlement agreement on compensation are:
- Government of Canada
- Assembly of First Nations
- Plaintiffs in the Moushoom class action (represented by counsel)
- Plaintiffs in the Trout class action (represented by counsel)
The parties involved in the negotiation of a long-term reform final settlement agreement are:
The Parties and Canada reached a final settlement agreement on compensation in April 2023. On July 26, 2023, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal confirmed that the final settlement agreement fully meets the Tribunal's 2019 orders on compensation. The Federal Court of Canada approved it on October 24, 2023. That approval is now final.
The First Nations Child and Family Services, Jordan's Principle and Trout Class Settlement Agreement provides $23.3 billion for:
- children who were removed from their homes under the First Nations Child and Family Services Program between April 1, 1991 and March 31, 2022
- First Nations children who were impacted by the government's narrow definition of Jordan's Principle between December 12, 2007 and November 2, 2017
- First Nations children who did not receive or were delayed in receiving an essential public service, product or support between April 1, 1991 and December 11, 2007
- First Nations individuals living on-reserve or in the Yukon, while under the age of majority, who were, based on the involvement of a child welfare agency, sent off-reserve by a caregiving parent or caregiving grandparent to stay with a non-family member in a placement not funded by ISC, between April 1, 1991, and March 31, 2022
Some caregivers of the children above may also be eligible for compensation.
The Federal Court has appointed Deloitte as the third-party administrator responsible for implementing the final settlement. Deloitte is also responsible for addressing questions related to the settlement, and are maintaining a website with additional information.
Before any compensation can be provided to eligible individuals, there are some additional steps that need to be taken. The process to implement the settlement could begin later in 2024 for some classes.
To learn more or sign up for updates, visit the Deloitte website First Nations Child And Family Services And Jordan's Principle Settlement.
First Nations individuals seeking immediate emotional support can contact:
Kids Help Phone
- Call toll free: 1-800-668-6868 and press 3 to reach a professional counsellor
Text: "FIRST NATIONS" to 686868 (youth) or 741741 (adults) to reach a trained volunteer crisis responder
- Access to resources online
- Urgent Help - Kids Help Phone
For more information:
The Agreement-in-Principle on the long-term reform of the First Nations Child and Family Services program and on a long-term approach for Jordan's Principle dedicates approximately $20 billion over 5 years and includes:
- funding focused on culturally appropriate prevention activities, based on substantive equality and the best interests and needs of First Nations children, youth, young adults and families
- use of evidence-informed well-being indicators for First Nations children, youth, families and First Nations to inform best practices and improve federal child and family services policies, procedures, agreements, and legislation over time
- child and family services funding to support First Nations youth aging out of the child welfare system, as well as young adults formerly in care, up to their 26th birthday or the age for post-majority support services specified in the applicable provincial or Yukon legislation (whichever age is greater)
- funding for prevention services to help children and families stay together by building on multi-generational cultural strengths
- funding to expand First Nations Representative Services to all provinces and in the Yukon
- funding for First Nations to purchase, construct or renovate housing units in their communities in relation to the needs of First Nations children
- funding for child and family services will go to First Nations, First Nations Child and Family Services agencies and service providers to deliver a range of services to children, youth, young adults and families in their communities.
First Nations affirming their jurisdiction under the framework provided in the Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families will receive the same funding they would have received under the reformed approach. Funding for the First Nations Child and Family Services program beyond 2029 will be determined through an approach set out in a final settlement agreement.
For more information:
- Executive Summary of Agreement-in-Principle on Long-Term Reform
- Share your thoughts on the Long-Term Reform of the First Nations Child and Family Services Program
Why long-term reform is needed
The long-term reform of First Nations Child and Family Services and long-term approach for Jordan's Principle are essential in:
- reducing the number of First Nations children in care
- keeping children connected to their families, communities and cultures
- ensuring that First Nations children, youth and young adults have access to the services they need, when they need them
Canada and the Parties continue to work on a final settlement agreement on long-term reform.
Long-term reform of First Nations Child and Family Services
The goal of the First Nations Child and Family Services reform is to ensure First Nations children, youth, young adults and families have access to culturally-based and substantively equal public services that meet their needs and community circumstances. To do this, Indigenous Services Canada will design, test and implement a new evidence-informed funding approach.
The new evidence-informed funding approach will provide First Nations, delegated agencies and First Nations-authorized service providers with non-discriminatory, stable and predictable funding. This will allow them to deliver services and supports to promote family wellness and address the factors linked to the over-representation of First Nations children in care.
Examples of these services include:
- culturally appropriate interventions and supports for children and young people with high needs, through services like counselling by youth workers and respite care
- supports for parents experiencing multi-generational trauma and addictions, like:
- family-based treatment
- cultural supports
- family reunification
Long-term approach for Jordan's Principle
The longer-term approach of the Jordan's Principle reform is to design, test and implement a long-term approach that ensures there is no discrimination in the provision of services and products for First Nations children and youth, including health and social services and education supports. Substantive equality and culturally appropriate interventions that respond to the unique needs of First Nations children and youth must be preserved when providing these services.
Canada and the Parties continue to work on a final settlement agreement on long-term reform.
On April 1, 2022, Canada started implementing a series of immediate measures as an early step toward the overall reform of the First Nations Child and Family Services program. A new funding mechanism is currently being used for the following components:
- Prevention Services: $2,500 per capita, based on the registered First Nation population resident on-reserve and on Crown land, and in the Yukon, based on the total registered population of a First Nation. These population figures are drawn from the Indian Registry System. Funds are allocated to First Nations and First Nations Child and Family Services service providers, to deliver prevention services that support the safety and well-being of children and families. The purpose of this funding is to reduce the number of First Nations children and youth in care and to address the structural drivers that lead to maltreatment.
- Post-Majority Support Services: Funding at actual costs up to the age of 26, or to the age as defined in provincial/Yukon legislation (whichever is greater). The purpose of this funding is to support youth aging out of care and young adults formerly in care as they transition to adulthood.
- First Nations Representative Services: $283 per capita, based on the registered First Nation population resident on-reserve and on Crown land, and in the Yukon, based on the total registered population of a First Nation. These population figures are drawn from the Indian Registry System. Funds are allocated to First Nations to support the functions of a First Nation Representative who works in the interests of the First Nation, its children and families. This includes advocating for the children's rights and collaborating with other service providers. In Ontario, where First Nations Representative Services have existed for several years, the funding formula is different.
In January 2024, Canada also began providing the remaining funding agreed to in the Agreement-in-Principle. This funding is referenced as "top-ups" for the following 5 components:
- information technology
- remoteness adjustment
- poverty adjustment
Funding for capital assets
On November 16, 2021, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal issued 2021 CHRT 41, which was amended on January 18, 2022. This decision contains orders for Canada to fund the purchase and construction of capital assets that are needed to support the delivery of child and family services on-reserve and in the Yukon, and for the delivery of services under Jordan's Principle to First Nations children on-reserve, in the Northwest Territories and in the Yukon. Funding includes ongoing operations and maintenance for the funded capital asset. The funding is provided at actual costs and can be accessed through a request process laid out in the Capital Assets Guide, and it is available to First Nations and First Nations Child and Family Services agencies.
New funding for housing on reserves to support prevention initiatives
In the Agreement-in-Principle on long-term reform, Canada has agreed to establish a $2 billion fund for First Nations to purchase, construct or renovate housing units in their communities in relation to the needs of First Nations children.
This is in addition to the $1.66 billion in housing investments that have been made since 2016 to address housing needs on reserves.
- Federal Court approves settlement agreement to compensate First Nations children and families
- CHRT letter-decision an important step towards compensating First Nations children and families
- Revised settlement agreement of $23B reached to compensate First Nations children and families
- Agreements-in-Principle reached on compensation and long-term reform of First Nations child and family services and Jordan's Principle
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