BLACK ANGLOPHONE MOTHER FILES CIVIL RIGHTS COMPLAINT AGAINST CENTRE JEUNESSE DE MONTREAL
Montreal, January 28, 2014 --- In what promises to be a precedent-setting case, the Quebec Human Rights and Youth Rights Commission will conduct investigation into a complaint filed by CRARR on behalf of an English-speaking Black mother who claimed that the Centre Jeunesse de Montreal (CJM) for discriminating against her because of her language, race and gender.
The woman, who sought protection in 2010 for her child from her abusive husband and who was transferred from Batshaw Youth and Family Centers to the CJM for special reasons, endured regular problems from the CJM, which assigned her youth protection delegates who could not speak or produce reports in English and which did not always provide her with an interpreter as required by law.
The evidence shows that despite legislative requirements, the CJM was not equipped to fully address her needs due to her English language, compelling the woman to resort to the courts and other agencies, including the Quebec Ombudsman, to obtain adequate assistance for her and her child.
In addition to failures to respect her language rights, she documented numerous incidents of gender and race-based bias during her two years of dealing with the CJM. The case raises dimensions of systemic racism and sexism in the assessment of youth protection, a system in which racialized youths are over-represented.
Mediation at the human rights commission, which took place before the Holiday Season, failed.
More to come.