BC Métis Federation Applauds Representative for Children and Youth

(Vancouver, BC) BC Métis Federation is publicly endorsing the findings of the report entitled When Talk Trumpeted Service: A Decade of Lost Opportunity for Aboriginal Children and Youth in B.C. The report was released this week by the Representative for Children and Youth Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond.

The report is an investigation of years of services and investments used to guide services for Aboriginal children, youth and families in British Columbia. The report identifies the challenges and problems that the current practices implemented by the Provincial Government through the Ministry of Children and Family Development are characterized as “confused, bizarre, and unstable.” The report analyzed how approximately $66 million spent on Aboriginal “governance” in the last dozen years without clear accounting, chaotic, haphazard, and prone to political lobbying. The reports clear states; “To be blunt, a significant amount of money has gone to people who provide no programming or services to directly benefit children (page 4).” The report goes on the present staggering figures and significant failure of the system to better serve children and families, including Métis.

The report identifies the investments with Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) between fiscal year 2009/2010 – 2012/2013 as $404,247.00. The lack of results, accountability or identification of any youth or families assisted by MNBC was nonexistent and part of the overall failure of the system.

BC Métis Federation President Keith Henry stated, “This report was like reading many of our concerns we have expressed to government as a Métis community since 2011 when we formed. I would argue that if a same analysis was applied to all Provincial and Federal Government Ministries for funding received by MNBC, the results would be the same. This shameful and I can assure the public and Métis agencies throughout British Columbia that BC Métis Federation has been fighting to address these very core issues which is now one of the key focus points of our human rights claim before the BC Human Rights Tribunal.”

BC Métis Federation President Henry added, “This is a shameful report for the Provincial Government and how clear the Ministry of Child and Family Development is using public funds to assists families in any political advantage. The five major recommendations make sense;

1. Development an explicit policy for negotiations
2. Suspend any open ended initiatives
3. Develop a clear plan to close gaps for Aboriginal children and youth including education and health
4. Immediately undertake a review of Senior MCFD staff
5. Begin to publicly report on the safety and well being of the children”

BC Métis Federation President Henry concluded, “I congratulate the Representative for Children and Youth Mary-Ellen Turpel-Lafond for bring this report to the forefront. BC Métis Federation could not agree more and we hope these issues are addressed for the betterment of our Métis children, families, and agencies who need the actual support and programs on the front lines. The wasteful spending on organizations such as MNBC cannot carry on.”

For more information about the BC Métis Federation please review the website at www.bcmetis.com.

Media Inquiries:
Keith Henry
BC Métis Federation
#300-3665 Kingsway
Vancouver, BC V5R 5W2
Office 1-604-638-7220
Cell 1-778-388-5013
Email k.henry@bcmetis.com
You can now follow BC Métis Federation President Keith Henry on twitter @keithhenryMetis

[ilink url=”http://bcmetis.com/wp-content/uploads/BCMF-Press-Release-November-8th-2013-Representative-for-Children-and-Youth-Report-1.pdf” style=”download”]Download this Press Release in PDF[/ilink]
[ilink url=”http://bcmetis.com/wp-content/uploads/RCY_AboriginalServices2013.pdf” style=”download”]Download the “When Talk Trumpeted Service” Report [/ilink]

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