Amber Alerts, settling down with baby after an apprehension and creating a child welfare act on InFocus


InFocus updates the story of a Brandon Manitoba family we told you about just before Christmas. They went to a hospital in November to have their first baby and after three days of labour, left empty-handed – escorted out by security.

A nurse claimed she heard the Metis dad threaten to shake the baby – he says he was talking about rocking the fussy newborn.  Child welfare was called and apprehended the newborn. His parents share the nightmare they endured to get him back three months later, and what they hope changes so no one else is robbed of that bonding time.

The Dakota mother said having First Nations liaisons in maternity wards might discourage staff from profiling of Indigenous parents and put parents at ease. But she also said First Nations need to exert jurisdiction for child welfare – taking control from agencies that operate under provincial legislation.

Meanwhile on April 1, Cowessess First Nation, near the Saskatchewan/Manitoba border, did just that.

Chief Cadmus Delorme shares how they created their own child welfare act and how it will affect the community – no matter if the children or parents actually live on reserve. And tips he has for other communities wanting to take over control of child welfare too.

And later in the show – a rare Amber Alert in Winnipeg has many questioning if the alert system was used properly and Indigenous parents in custody battles wondering if they could be targeted too.

Host/Producer - Winnipeg

Melissa is a proud Red River Metis and award-winning journalist who has spent more than 24 years covering crime, courts, politics, business and entertainment for newspapers in four provinces.
She then joined APTN Investigates in 2009 and APTN National News in 2018 and in that time has garnered numerous awards and nominations including from the World Indigenous Television Broadcasters Network (2013), Canadian Association of Journalists (2016, 2019) and Canadian Screen Awards (2018, 2019).