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The 15 year fight to treat Indigenous children as equals


For decades, First Nations children on reserves had to live with less child welfare funding than other kids in Canada.

And that led to kids being taken from their communities at higher rates, often for problems that could have been solved with better supports.

This week, after years of court battles, the federal government made a $40 billion promise to First Nations leaders. $20 billion of that will go to compensate kids who were unnecessarily removed from their homes on reserve or in the Yukon. The other $20 billion will go to long-term reform of the on-reserve child welfare system.

Cindy Blackstock, the executive director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and a professor at McGill University's School of Social Work, has made it her mission to make sure First Nations kids get care that matches up with care received by other kids in Canada.

Today, she talks about the long fight for this agreement, and why she’s still waiting to celebrate.