Government of Canada / Gouvernement du Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Search

An Act respecting First Nations, Inuit and Métis children, youth and families (S.C. 2019, c. 24)

Act current to 2022-09-22 and last amended on 2020-01-01. Previous Versions

Jurisdiction — Child and Family Services

Marginal note:Affirmation

  •  (1) The inherent right of self-government recognized and affirmed by section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982 includes jurisdiction in relation to child and family services, including legislative authority in relation to those services and authority to administer and enforce laws made under that legislative authority.

  • Marginal note:Dispute resolution mechanisms

    (2) For greater certainty and for the purposes of subsection (1), the authority to administer and enforce laws includes the authority to provide for dispute resolution mechanisms.

Marginal note:Application of Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

 The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies to an Indigenous governing body in the exercise of jurisdiction in relation to child and family services on behalf of an Indigenous group, community or people.

Laws of Indigenous Groups, Communities or Peoples

Coordination and Application

Marginal note:Notice

  •  (1) If an Indigenous group, community or people intends to exercise its legislative authority in relation to child and family services, an Indigenous governing body acting on behalf of that Indigenous group, community or people may give notice of that intention to the Minister and the government of each province in which the Indigenous group, community or people is located.

  • Marginal note:Coordination agreement

    (2) The Indigenous governing body may also request that the Minister and the government of each of those provinces enter into a coordination agreement with the Indigenous governing body in relation to the exercise of the legislative authority, respecting, among other things,

    • (a) the provision of emergency services to ensure the safety, security and well-being of Indigenous children;

    • (b) support measures to enable Indigenous children to exercise their rights effectively;

    • (c) fiscal arrangements, relating to the provision of child and family services by the Indigenous governing body, that are sustainable, needs-based and consistent with the principle of substantive equality in order to secure long-term positive outcomes for Indigenous children, families and communities and to support the capacity of the Indigenous group, community or people to exercise the legislative authority effectively; and

    • (d) any other coordination measure related to the effective exercise of the legislative authority.

  • Marginal note:Application — sections 21 and 22

    (3) Sections 21 and 22 apply only in respect of an Indigenous group, community or people on whose behalf an Indigenous governing body

    • (a) entered into a coordination agreement; or

    • (b) has not entered into a coordination agreement, although it made reasonable efforts to do so during the period of one year after the day on which the request is made.

  • Marginal note:Clarification

    (4) For the purposes of paragraph 3(b), sections 21 and 22 apply beginning on the day after the day on which the period referred to in that paragraph ends.

  • Marginal note:Dispute resolution mechanism

    (5) If the Indigenous governing body, the Minister and the government of each of those provinces make reasonable efforts to enter into a coordination agreement but do not enter into a coordination agreement, a dispute resolution mechanism provided for by the regulations made under section 32 may be used to promote entering into a coordination agreement.

  • Marginal note:New request

    (6) If sections 21 and 22 do not apply in respect of an Indigenous group, community or people, nothing prevents the Indigenous governing body that has already made a request under subsection (2) on behalf of the Indigenous group, community or people from making a new request.

  • Marginal note:Coordination agreement entered into after one year

    (7) For greater certainty, even if sections 21 and 22 apply in respect of an Indigenous group, community or people on behalf of which an Indigenous governing body has not entered into a coordination agreement, nothing prevents the Indigenous governing body from entering into a coordination agreement after the end of the period referred to in paragraph (3)(b).

Marginal note:Force of law

  •  (1) A law, as amended from time to time, of an Indigenous group, community or people referred to in subsection 20(3) also has, during the period that the law is in force, the force of law as federal law.

  • Marginal note:Interpretation

    (2) No federal law, other than this Act, affects the interpretation of a law referred to in subsection (1) by reason only that subsection (1) gives the law the force of law as federal law.

  • Marginal note:Application of federal laws

    (3) No federal law, other than this Act and the Canadian Human Rights Act, applies in relation to a law referred to in subsection (1) by reason only that subsection (1) gives the law the force of law as federal law.

Marginal note:Conflict — federal laws

  •  (1) If there is a conflict or inconsistency between a provision respecting child and family services that is in a law of an Indigenous group, community or people and a provision respecting child and family services — other than any of sections 10 to 15 of this Act and the provisions of the Canadian Human Rights Act — that is in a federal Act or regulation, the provision that is in the law of the Indigenous group, community or people prevails to the extent of the conflict or inconsistency.

  • Marginal note:Clarification

    (2) The reference to a “federal Act or regulation” in subsection (1) does not include a reference to a law that has the force of law under subsection 21(1).

  • Marginal note:Conflict — provincial laws

    (3) For greater certainty, if there is a conflict or inconsistency between a provision respecting child and family services that is in a law of an Indigenous group, community or people and a provision respecting child and family services that is in a provincial Act or regulation, the provision that is in the law of the Indigenous group, community or people prevails to the extent of the conflict or inconsistency.

Marginal note:Application to Indigenous children — exception

 A provision respecting child and family services that is in a law of an Indigenous group, community or people applies in relation to an Indigenous child except if the application of the provision would be contrary to the best interests of the child.

Marginal note:Conflict — stronger ties

  •  (1) If there is a conflict or inconsistency between a provision respecting child and family services that is in a law of an Indigenous group, community or people and a provision respecting child and family services that is in a law of another Indigenous group, community or people, the provision that is in the law of the Indigenous group, community or people with which the child has stronger ties — taking into consideration his or her habitual residence as well as his or her views and preferences, giving due weight to his or her age and maturity, unless they cannot be ascertained, and the views and preferences of his or her parent and the care provider — prevails to the extent of the conflict or inconsistency.

  • Marginal note:References to laws

    (2) Subsection (1) also applies in respect of the provisions of a law that has the force of law under subsection 21(1).

Publication and Accessibility

Marginal note:Publication

 The Minister must

  • (a) as soon as feasible after receiving a notice under subsection 20(1), or a request under subsection 20(2), post on a website the name of the Indigenous group, community or people on whose behalf an Indigenous governing body has given the notice or made the request, as the case may be, and the date on which the notice or request was received;

  • (b) as soon as feasible after a coordination agreement is entered into, post on a website the name of the Indigenous group, community or people on whose behalf an Indigenous governing body has entered into the coordination agreement and the date on which it was entered into; and

  • (c) as soon as feasible after receiving notice that a law made on behalf of an Indigenous group, community or people contains a provision respecting child and family services, post on a website the name of that Indigenous group, community or people and the date on which the law comes into force.

Marginal note:Accessibility

 After receiving a copy of a law that contains a provision respecting child and family services made on behalf of an Indigenous group, community or people referred to in subsection 20(3), the Minister is to ensure that the law is made accessible to the public in any manner that the Minister considers appropriate, and to that end may publish the law, as amended from time to time, in the Canada Gazette.

General

Marginal note:Role of Minister

 The Minister may gather information respecting the child and family services that are provided in relation to Indigenous children and information about individuals in relation to whom those services are provided and facilitate the disclosure of that information to affected families and communities.

Marginal note:Agreements — information

 The Minister may enter into agreements with a provincial government and any Indigenous governing body regarding the collection, retention, use and disclosure of information respecting the child and family services that are provided in relation to Indigenous children in order to, among other things,

  • (a) ensure that Indigenous children are identified as a First Nations person, an Inuk or a Métis person, as the case may be, and that their communities of origin and those of their parents are identified, when possible, when child and family services are provided in relation to them;

  • (b) support the improvement of those services; and

  • (c) facilitate the disclosure of that information to affected families and communities.

Marginal note:Powers of Minister

 For the purposes of section 27, the Minister may disclose information respecting the child and family services that are provided in relation to Indigenous children and information about individuals in relation to whom those services are provided.

Marginal note:Disclosure of information

 For the purposes of implementing an agreement referred to in section 28, a provincial government or a public body established under a provincial Act may collect and disclose information respecting the child and family services that are provided in relation to Indigenous children and information about individuals in relation to whom those services are provided.

Marginal note:Five-year review

  •  (1) Every five years after the day on which this section comes into force, the Minister must, in collaboration with Indigenous peoples, including representatives of First Nations, the Inuit and the Métis, undertake a review of the provisions and operation of this Act.

  • Marginal note:Provincial governments

    (2) For greater certainty, when undertaking the review, the Minister may also collaborate with provincial governments.

  • Marginal note:Report

    (3) The Minister must prepare a report on the review that sets out his or her conclusions and recommendations, including any improvements to the provisions of this Act that he or she recommends.

  • Marginal note:Tabling of report

    (4) The Minister must cause the report to be tabled in each House of Parliament on any of the first 30 days on which it is sitting after the day on which the report is completed.

Regulations

Marginal note:Regulations

  •  (1) If affected Indigenous governing bodies were afforded a meaningful opportunity to collaborate in the policy development leading to the making of the regulations, the Governor in Council may make regulations providing for any matter relating to the application of this Act or respecting the provision of child and family services in relation to Indigenous children.

  • Marginal note:Provincial governments

    (2) For greater certainty, subsection (1) does not prevent provincial governments from collaborating in the policy development referred to in that subsection.

Transitional Provisions

Marginal note:Representations and party status

 In the context of a proceeding referred to in section 13 that is pending on the day on which that section comes into force, the right referred to in that section may be exercised only if its exercise is consistent with the best interests of the child and is appropriate in the circumstances.

Marginal note:Regulations

  •  (1) If affected Indigenous governing bodies were afforded a meaningful opportunity to collaborate in the policy development leading to the making of the regulations, the Governor in Council may make any regulations that the Governor in Council considers necessary to provide for any other transitional matter arising from the coming into force of this Act.

  • Marginal note:Provincial governments

    (2) For greater certainty, subsection (1) does not prevent provincial governments from collaborating in the policy development referred to in that subsection.

Coming into Force

Marginal note:Order in council

Footnote * The provisions of this Act come into force on a day or days to be fixed by order of the Governor in Council.

 
Date modified: