Stockwoods represents Amnesty International in important human rights appeal
Justin Safayeni successfully represented Amnesty International Canada before the Federal Court of Appeal in Ottawa in an important human rights appeal concerning whether First Nations children living on reserves can pursue a complaint under the Canadian Human Rights Act to argue for equal funding for child welfare services as compared to First Nations children living off reserves. The Canadian Human Rights Tribunal had dismissed the complaint, concluding that the CHRA did not allow children receiving services from the federal government (on reserves) to be compared to children receiving services from the provincial government (off reserves). Amnesty participated in a judicial review application (brought by the Canadian Human Rights Commission, the Assembly of First Nations and the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society) before the Federal Court, arguing that the Tribunal’s interpretation was unreasonable given Canada’s obligations under international human rights law. The Federal Court accepted these arguments, and set aside the Tribunal’s decision. The Attorney General appealed to the Federal Court of Appeal, but in reasons released today, the appeal was dismissed and the Federal Court’s decision was unanimously upheld.