Professor Cindy Blackstock
Gitxsan Nation (House of Geel) Pronounced "Gale"
A member of the Gitxsan Nation, Cindy is the Executive Director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society and a Professor at McGill University. She works with children and First Nations to ensure culturally based equity for First Nations children, youth and families. Often found in the company of a sacred symbol of the children named Spirit Bear, Cindy is best known for her role in a landmark human rights case resulting in legal orders for the Canadian government to cease its discrimination by properly funding First Nations child and family services and implementing Jordan's Principle.
Championing native children from Canada
This presentation shares the story of how children joined the Caring Society and the Assembly of First Nations as active human rights defenders in a landmark human rights legal case against the Canadian government to fix discriminatory shortfalls in First Nations children's public services dating back to Confederation. The combination of litigation and a child centred social movement has resulted in First Nations children and families receiving millions of services that they would otherwise have been denied. While Canada continues to resist and litigate, it is clear that this generation of children have not normalized the colonial discrimination and will not support any government that puts up with it.