I want to take this time to offer my thanks to the many local advocates, working on behalf of those without housing and those living in poverty, who have been of great service to the people inhabiting “Tent City” in Victoria during the past several months.
I am extremely proud of the Premier for acknowledging in public her own experiences in today’s Vancouver Sun op-ed. This is difficult and personal and she has found her voice now to speak out. It tells me that, even for somebody in high office, there is a pressure to keep quiet, forget or frankly pretend that all is fine when it is not.
During the course of my nearly 10 years as Representative for Children and Youth in British Columbia and, in fact, throughout my career, I have had the privilege of getting to know hundreds of youth in care. These young people are diverse and talented individuals of all ages, backgrounds and cultures and, time and again, I’ve been inspired by their strength, adaptability and creativity under less than ideal conditions.
Representative for Children and Youth Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond has reviewed today’s Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) Information Bulletin regarding the establishment of an advisory committee to assist with the ministry’s multi-year planning. The Information Bulletin does not properly reflect the nature of discussions between MFCD and the Representative’s Office with respect to this group.
Today’s landmark ruling by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal, formally recognizing that federal provision of First Nations child and family services on-reserve across Canada is discriminatory, is a welcome and important step toward equality for Aboriginal children with their non-Aboriginal peers, said Representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond.
Representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond will address the human rights of Indigenous children as part of the University of British Columbia's Janusz Korczak Lecture Series How to Love a Child that continues this week.
The series honours the memory and teachings of Poland’s Dr. Janusz Korczak, an early advocate for children’s rights, including their right for human dignity and respect, and whose ideas remain highly regarded today. The United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child is informed and inspired by Korczak’s theories.
Canada's National Child Day – marked on Nov. 20 each year – commemorates the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Child (UNCRC) and gives us the opportunity to step back and take a look at the state of children and youth in our country and to ask whether our laws and policies reflect the intent of the UNCRC.