Coast Salish Territory. We are deeply saddened by the recent death of a young First Nations man. Our hearts are with his grieving family.
We also hold in our hearts the staff who work tirelessly to provide care to our most vulnerable young people.
We will pause to mourn this loss and then seek a thorough investigation into this tragedy and the contributing system failures. We support our First Nations leadership in their call for immediate action and accountability.
We all need to better understand what happened and look for ways to prevent further tragedies. This tragedy further highlights the critical need for culturally appropriate and trauma-informed mental health services for Indigenous youth. We are hopeful that this tragedy will bring people and systems together to make things better including more critical resources to support life.
“We are again witnessing the pervasive forces of colonialism and the legacy of the residential school system,” said Mary Teegee, Chair of the BC Directors Forum which represents Delegated Aboriginal Agencies in British Columbia and Executive Director of Carrier Sekani Family Services. “We will continue working together to heal intergenerational trauma with land-based healing, cultural teachings and the support of our communities. We will rebuild the strong families and communities our children need.”
Mary Teegee (Maaxw Gibuu), IMBA
Delegated Aboriginal Agencies
About the Directors Forum
The Directors Forum is a coalition of executives responsible for managing the 24 delegated Aboriginal Agencies in BC, agencies representing 60% of First Nations in the province. As a collective providing Indigenous child welfare services, the Directors Forum holds decades of frontline experience working with Indigenous children and families.