Indigenous child welfare rates creating ‘humanitarian crisis’ in Canada, says federal minister

The disproportionate number of Indigenous children currently in the child welfare system has created a “humanitarian crisis” in the country, says Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott.

Philpott sent a letter to provincial and territorial counterparts Tuesday requesting an “emergency meeting” on Indigenous children and family services early in the New Year. The meeting will also include Indigenous leaders, representatives and child welfare experts.

“We are facing a humanitarian crisis in this country where Indigenous children are vastly disproportionately over-represented in the child welfare system,” said Philpott in an interview Thursday with Power & Politics.

“This is very much reminiscent of the residential school system where children are being scooped up from their homes, taken away from their family and we will pay the price for this for generations to come,” she said.