The government of Canada doesn’t want any more delays to its ’60s Scoop settlement offer.
Six adoptees have opted out of the ‘60s Scoop settlement giving the deal the green light it needs from the class.
James Fitzmorris, a spokesperson for Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett, said half a dozen applications were received by the Oct. 31 opt-out deadline – far fewer than is needed to abandon the class-action settlement.
Already 4,200 adoptees – out of an estimated 20,000 – have filed applications for compensation, he said.
The deadline for class members to file compensation claims extends to Aug. 30, 2019.
Now only a dispute between lawyers is holding up the $875-million national compensation deal for eligible First Nations people and Inuit.
Something that worries Canada.
“We’re definitely concerned that the leave to appeal that was filed will force us to delay implementing this for all the survivors that fought so hard for it for so long,” Fitzmorris said from Ottawa.
APTN News reported Wednesday a last-minute motion seeking leave to appeal was filed by a lawyer representing a small group of adoptees.
The group alleges problems with some of the procedures that were followed.
But Canada believes things were done properly and the settlement should go forward.
“If there are those who want to continue arguing about ($37.5 million in) lawyers’ legal fees that that should be separate from the process,” Fitzmorris said.
“Because we don’t want survivors to have to wait any longer.”
He said Canada has opposed the motion to the Federal Court of Appeal.
However, if rejected, the group can further apply to the Supreme Court of Canada, which would put the settlement on hold even longer.
So Fitzmorris said Canada is seeking an order permitting the settlement to go ahead despite any more motions.
“We’re also working with the parties involved…to ask them to withdraw this and see if we can’t resolve these issues outside of court,” he said.