Klein Lawyers filed this class action against the Government of Canada to seek compensation and future change for Indigenous children who attended First Nations schools on reserves in Canada. The government of Canada has been responsible for establishing and funding the education system for First Nations managed elementary and secondary schools on reserves. The plaintiff in this lawsuit – Braelyn Catcheway who is represented by her father and litigation guardian Timothy Catcheway – alleges the education system is rife with problems. Chief among them is that Canada failed to ensure First Nations managed schools were given enough funding to provide Indigenous children with adequate primary and secondary education. The claim alleges that this breached the children’s equality rights guaranteed under section 15(1) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
The Honourable Mr. Justice Manson certified this lawsuit as a class proceeding on consent on April 26, 2023. The class is defined as:
All individual Students who attended a First Nation Managed School for educational purposes at any time during the period from and including April 17, 1985 until October 18, 2021 (the “Class Period”).
See the Consent Certification Order here.
We are now working toward the common issues trial, which is expected to occur sometime in 2024.
- Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, Internal Audit Report – Audit of the Elementary and Secondary Education Program May 2017
- Government of Canada – Formative Evaluation of the Elementary/Secondary Education Program on Reserve October 2009
- Federal Spending on Primary and Secondary Education on First Nations Reserves December 6, 2016
- Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the House of Commons – Programs for First Nations on Reserves 2011
- Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the House of Commons – Indian and Northern Affairs Canada – Education Program and Post-Secondary Student Support 2004
“The negotiations were conducted by plaintiffs’ counsel with experience in class proceedings.”
“I am satisfied it is apparent from the material, which is complicated, and, I might say very well organized...”
“Plaintiff’s counsel are senior members of the bar who have extensive experience in personal injury litigation and class actions..”
“Mr. Klein is experienced and able in relation to class proceedings. Over time he has acquired expertise that permits him to make a valuable contribution...”
“The lead class counsel is experienced and has been recognized by the courts in approving settlements in other class actions.”
“Counsel for the plaintiffs in the various jurisdictions appear to be experienced in class proceedings, and to be recognized as skilled litigators.”
“…Plaintiff’s counsel retained the British Columbia law firm of Klein Lawyers to assist in the litigation. That firm has extensive experience...”
“Klein Lawyers is a litigation firm focusing on class actions. The firm is based in Vancouver but also has a Toronto office.”
“The proposed Class Counsel have excellent qualifications…”
“Mr. Klein of Klein Lawyers has over 20 years of experience in the field of class action litigation and has appeared as plaintiffs’ counsel in over 25 certified class actions...”
“Class counsel, Klein Lawyers LLP and Kim Orr Barristers P.C., are highly experienced in class action litigation. Both firms have practiced in the specialized area of class action litigation for over 20 years”
“British Columbia class counsel took on this case on a contingency basis, and faced a real risk of not being paid at all for their services.”
“Class counsel pursued this litigation to completion on their own rather than with a consortium of counsel from various provinces.”
“Klein Lawyers has continuously posted updates about the case on its website during the litigation, and has posted the court decisions...”
“There is little doubt that the lawyers of the firm expended a great deal of time in prosecuting the action, in negotiating a settlement...”
“…Class counsel undertook an extensive communication plan to advise potential class members of the proposed settlement and to advise them of the...”