The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations is applauding the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision ruling the federal government’s Indigenous child welfare act is constitutional, affirming that First Nations Peoples have sole authority over the protection of their children.

The FSIN intervened in support of the legislation, maintaining that First Nations are in the best position to raise their children.

“Under federal and provincial colonial and racist policies such as Indian Residential Schools, the Sixties Scoop, and the Millenium Scoop, First Nations children have been exploited, commodified, and enslaved. These ways have disrupted our Nations and killed our children. We have never given up our Inherent and Human Rights to care for and protect our own children within our own traditional systems. We have never surrendered this right to the governments, under whose systems our children have suffered and died for over a century. These foreign systems fail our children,” said Chief Bobby Cameron.

It adds the high court’s decision is provincial overreach in First Nations jurisdiction.

Ottawa’s 2019 Act Respecting First Nations, Metis and Inuit Children Youth and Families affirmed that Indigenous Peoples have an inherent right of self-government that includes jurisdiction over child and family services. The ruling today was unanimous.

(With files from the Canadian Press.)