Manitoba Officials Take Newborn From Indigenous Mom In ‘Disturbing’ Video


WINNIPEG — Two social media videos show a newborn baby girl being taken from the arms of her Indigenous mother by Manitoba social workers and police — an apprehension that First Nations leaders say is all too common in a child-welfare system biased against Aboriginals.

The videos, broadcast live Thursday on Facebook by the woman’s uncle, show her sitting in a hospital bed, cradling her baby and rocking back and forth as social workers and police explain that the baby is being taken into care.

The woman is crying softly and being hugged by relatives, one of whom is wailing in sorrow. Eventually, police place the newborn into a car seat and take her away.

The mother is not told when she might see her baby again.

“The video itself was disturbing and raised a number of questions, obviously, for anybody who saw it,” Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott said in an interview Friday.

“It certainly begs the question as to whether or not this family was treated in a way where the unity of the family and the bond between parent and child was respected as something that had to be taken into serious consideration.”

Statistics from the Manitoba government show newborn apprehensions occur, on average, about once a day in the province. About 90 per cent of kids in care are Indigenous.

The video segments, which had been viewed more than 400,000 times by Friday afternoon, offered a rare glimpse into a normally private matter. They also display a biased child welfare system, according to Indigenous leaders.

“The system that we’re subject to is not a system for our people,” Grand Chief Garrison Settee, who represents northern Manitoba First Nations, said Friday at a news conference with the mother, her family and other community leaders.

“We want to take back our babies because they belong to us. …read more

Source:: The Huffington Post – Canada

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