By Sonia Harris-Short
This quantity addresses the contentious and topical factor of aboriginal self-government over baby welfare. utilizing case reviews from Australia and Canada, it discusses aboriginal baby welfare in old and comparative views and severely examines fresh criminal reforms and alterations within the layout, administration and supply of kid welfare providers aimed toward securing the 'decolonization' of aboriginal kids and households. inside this context, the writer identifies the constraints of reconciling the conflicting calls for of self-determination and sovereignty and means that overseas legislation supplies extra nuanced and culturally delicate strategies. touching on the UN assertion at the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and the UN conference at the Rights of the kid, it's argued that the potent decolonization of aboriginal baby welfare calls for a trip well past the only factor of kid welfare to the guts of the talk over self-government, self-determination and sovereignty in either nationwide and overseas legislations.
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Additional resources for Aboriginal Child Welfare, Self-Government and the Rights of Indigenous Children: Protecting the Vulnerable Under International Law
Under the Constitution, child welfare generally falls within the jurisdiction of the individual provinces but the picture is complicated in the case of Aboriginal children by the fact that the federal government retains exclusive jurisdiction over ‘Indians and lands reserved for Indians’ (The British North America Act 1867, s 91(24)). As will be discussed in Chapter 2, this has created highly damaging jurisdictional disputes over Aboriginal child welfare in Canada. 43 Supra note 1, 575. 44 Ibid.
If the decolonization of Aboriginal communities is to be the key to achieving real improvements for Aboriginal children, Canada’s experiences reveal that both Canada and Australia will need to adopt a much more radical approach. There is, moreover, a further important lesson to be taken from Canada’s experiences with delegated Aboriginal child welfare agencies. Self-government, as well as promising much, brings important risks and challenges for Aboriginal communities and their children. These risks need to be taken seriously.
At the Inquiry into his death, Mr Justice Giesbrecht was absolutely damning of Dakota Ojibway, declaring: It was negligence and incompetence pure and simple … The agency that was supposed to be protecting the boy was compounding his agony. 46 The death of Lester Desjarlais provides a shocking example of an Aboriginalcontrolled child welfare agency failing an Aboriginal child. In his final report on Lester’s death, Justice Giesbrecht presented a disturbing picture of a child welfare agency that was headed by unqualified, incompetent staff; an agency that was rendered useless by political interference and manipulation by powerful families on the reserve; an agency trying to serve a community in total denial of rampant violence and sexual abuse, denial that existed even within its own staff; and an agency that was abandoned by the provincial government at the earliest opportunity.