News Topics: Child and Youth Safety


Children’s Rights and Family Law Reform Submission by the CCRC

The Canadian Coalition for the Rights of Children (CCRC) has released a submission that recognizes and appreciates the government’s plan to modernize Canada’s family laws. The submission recommends additions for the realization of children’s rights. Canadian law must explicitly include: giving priority to the best interests of the child in decisions and MORE

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Review of the Representative for Children and Youth Act

The Select Standing Committee on Children and Youth has released its report on the review of the Representative for Children and Youth Act.  The recommendations First Call made in our submission to the review are frequently cited in the report, and several of them informed the Committee’s recommendations, while others were not acted upon. In sum, the MORE

Child and youth news of the week

CBC News: Human rights complaint filed against Neufeld and the school board Global News: Chilliwack trustee Barry Neufeld faces call from parents’ group to resign Province: Chilliwack teachers say education board has created ‘toxic’ environment Global News: Union files human rights complaint against trustee Barry Neufeld and Chilliwack school board Abbotsford News: Chilliwack board of MORE

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Oak Bay child murders highlight need for robust reforms to family law and child protection

The murder of two young girls on Christmas day in Oak Bay, Victoria has brought to light once again egregious issues with BC’s family law system and the need for much needed reforms to protect vulnerable children at risk. Little has changed since former Representative for Children and Youth Mary MORE


UNICEF focuses on child rights online, impact of digital technology on kids

UNICEF is focusing on identifying both the benefits and risks to child safety online. In December 2017, the UNICEF China country office hosted Safeguarding the Future: Online Protection of Underage Users, a special session of the Fourth World Internet Conference in the East China town of Wuzhen.  The UN has been addressing MORE


Systems gaps identified in new RCYBC report on teen suicide

Bernard Richard, BC’s Representative for Children and Youth, as released Missing Pieces: Joshua’s Story, which draws from the death of a 17-year-old the lesson that major gaps exist in BC’s youth mental health system. Richard calls on BC’s new Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions to take the lead in MORE

Campaigns and Issues

Legal coalition outlines justice reform priorities for BC

A coalition of legal groups including the Community Legal Assistance Society, PIVOT, the BC Civil Liberties Association and Westcoast LEAF have issued a report outlining justice reform priorities for BC’s “badly broken” system. Outlined priorities for the Attorney General and Solicitor General of BC addressing family law include: Increase funding MORE


Report exposes violations of basic workplace rights including children at risk

The BC Employment Standards Coalition released a report on Labour Day titled Workers’ Stories of Exploitation & Abuse: Why BC Employment Standards Need to Change that cites previous research and reports by First Call on the deregulation of child labour in BC and its impact on children and youth (pages 32-33). The MORE

resources innovation for homeless youth launched

The Vancouver Community Network (VCN) has launched, which leverages SMS technology to send messages to the cell phones of homeless and street-involved youth with program information, life-saving alerts and real-time updates on available shelter beds displayed on Google maps. Work on this program started in 2014 in Vancouver’s Downtown MORE

Campaigns and Issues

First Call urges Senate to pass Bill S-206 to repeal section 43 to end physical punishment of children

First Call recently sent a letter to all Canadian senators, asking them to support Bill S-206, which would repeal section 43 of the Criminal Code. Section 43, also known as the “spanking law,” permits the use of force for disciplining children by parents and persons standing in place of parents. MORE