Métis Foster Child – An Absolute Disgrace

Wednesday, May 25th, 2016

Métis Communities
BC Métis Federation Members

Re: Métis Foster Child – An Absolute Disgrace 

Dear Members,

The BC Métis Federation and the Métis foster family prepare for the next iteration of the “fight” to stop Métis foster child “SS” from being wrongfully adopted to a non-Métis family in Ontario. Since January the BC Métis Federation has been working hard to support our Métis members and this case given the absolute disgraceful way the Provincial Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) continues to try and removal another Métis child from our community.

The case will be before five (5) judges in June and I write to raise the ongoing issues with how Métis foster child “SS” is being treated. Over the course of the last few months the Representative for Children and Youth (RCY) Office called for an independent review. Initially there was conversations but to our surprise after a short period of time the so called “independent” review was completed by MCFD.

MCFD contracted a Métis consultant to lead the “independent review” with someone who professes to be an expert on Métis children and family adoption issues. Although this Métis consultant is an alleged professional her methodology and assumptions are inaccurate and only serving MCFD objectives. Not once did the expert’s methodology include any interviews with the actual Métis community within the BC Métis Federation nor the Métis foster family.

While the details of this report are confidential what I can say is the conclusions are some of the most dangerous I have ever read. The report suggests this Métis foster child will be culturally cared for if there are simple culture aspects such as a Métis sash, some Métis cultural reading materials, or attending Métis functions in Ontario where the foster child is being proposed to be moved.

While these are cultural elements there seems to be no reality that the Métis community has living people who provide that sense of belonging, teachings, cultural associations with the tools of our culture. This Métis foster family and foster child is connected with the BC Métis Federation and has been active with our families. We have provided cultural tools and spent time with the family prior to this case and throughout this entire process. So the real question to the expert is why does this not matter when protecting this Métis foster child’s cultural interests?

Point is that this case will expect to be national news and once again MCFD has used Métis “mercenaries” and Métis institutions they contract to get the results they want, which in this case is to move this foster child to Ontario. The best interests of this Métis foster child are to stay with the only family she was ever known which is now almost 3 years. Her current location is close to her biological parents and we are preparing to fight this case with the foster family.

MCFD has only delayed their strategy and continues to forces the foster family and the BC Métis Federation to spend resources in court rather than on these children. Imagine how much public money MCFD has spent fighting our community and Métis members.

This adoption case is very important to fight and we hope members will continue to support stopping the wrongful removal. We have faith in the courts and will be side by side with “SS” and her Métis foster family to do what is actually best for this child.

Watch for updates in June.

Thank you,

Keith Henry
President
BC Métis Federation

[ilink url=”http://bcmetis.com/wp-content/uploads/BC-Metis-Federation-Case-of-SS-May-25th-2016.pdf” style=”download”]Click here to download the letter in PDF format.[/ilink]

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