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Out of Darkness: Indigenous Solutions for Child Welfare


Indigenous child welfare is in crisis, the federal government admits. In this series The Tyee’s Katie Hyslop looks at how governments systematically undermined Indigenous families — and the emerging Indigenous-led solutions.

This series is supported by Vancouver Foundation. Supporters neither influence nor endorse the particular content of the reporting. Other publications wishing to publish Katie’s work can contact editor Barry Link here.

In This Series



How Canada Created a Crisis in Indigenous Child Welfare

Part one of a series: from residential schools to the Sixties Scoop, governments set out to undermine Indigenous families.

By Katie Hyslop, 9 May 2018



How Poverty and Underfunding Land Indigenous Kids in Care

Part two of a series: governments falling short in fixing Indigenous child welfare crisis, say critics.

By Katie Hyslop, 14 May 2018



Lessons from Care: ‘If the Government Hadn’t Done All Those Terrible Things’

Part three in a series. Who better to ask for solutions than Indigenous youth who have been in government care. First up, Ashley Bach.

By Katie Hyslop, 16 May 2018



The Kelowna Accord, Racism and the Child Welfare Crisis

Part four in a series. Former PM Paul Martin says an opportunity was lost; Cindy Blackstock isn’t so sure.

By Katie Hyslop, 22 May 2018



Changes Coming — Slowly — to Indigenous Child Welfare in BC

Part five of a series. Now that governments are finally acknowledging the problem, here’s what is changing.

By Katie Hyslop, 24 May 2018



Lessons from Care: ‘The Only Flaw in This System Is that Some of Us Survived’

Part six in a series. Jaye Simpson on lessons from a childhood in care.

By Katie Hyslop, 28 May 2018



Closing the Gap Between White Schools of Social Work and Indigenous Families

Part seven of a series. Indigenizing social work, one school at a time.

By Katie Hyslop, 31 May 2018



Lessons from Care: ‘One Thing I Do Recall Is Feeling Powerless and Unprotected’

Part eight in a series. Who better to ask for solutions than Indigenous youth who have been in government care. Today, Reina Foster.

By Katie Hyslop, 4 Jun 2018



‘We Can Stop That Flow of Children Going into Care’

Part nine in a series: how one First Nations community took on the child welfare system and won.

By Katie Hyslop, 6 Jun 2018



One First Nation’s Bold Approach to Child Welfare

Part 10 of a series: the Splatsin fought to gain control, and offer a new model of care for kids and families.

By Katie Hyslop, 11 Jun 2018



Lessons from Care: ‘We’ll Be Triumphant in Our Battle to Make This System Great’

Part 11 in a series. Who better to ask for solutions than Indigenous youth who have been in government care? Today, activist Dylan Cohen.

By Katie Hyslop, 13 Jun 2018



Good Intentions, Not Enough Action in Indigenous Child Welfare Plan, Says Advocate

Part 12 of a series. Minister Jane Philpott says the government knows the way out of the crisis. Cindy Blackstock has a different plan.

By Katie Hyslop, 18 Jun 2018



How We All Can Help Improve Indigenous Child Welfare Today

Part 13 of a series. Big structural change takes time. Improving lives of kids in care doesn’t have to.

By Katie Hyslop, 20 Jun 2018