Web Analytics

Can the court force this Six Nations child back to chemo?

Late Friday, Two Row Times learned that the CAS and McMaster Children’s Hospital are seeking a push from the courts to forcibly return Jada Johnson into chemotherapy. The 11-year-old female from Six Nations was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in August.

Initially the CAS did inform the child’s mother Deneen Hill, that they had no issue with her decision to seek a holistic hybrid method of Ongwehowe Onongwatri:yo and other alternative therapies as treatment for Jada. This form of treatment will also be monitored by doctors.

However now sources say an unnamed third party is involved in bringing the CAS to court to order the child be put back into chemotherapy.

SIX NATIONS – Late Friday, Two Row Times learned that the CAS and McMaster Children’s Hospital are seeking a push from the courts to forcibly return Jada Johnson into chemotherapy. The 11-year-old female from Six Nations was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in August.

Initially the CAS did inform the child’s mother Deneen Hill, that they had no issue with her decision to seek a holistic hybrid method of Ongwehowe Onongwatri:yo and other alternative therapies as treatment for Jada. This form of treatment will also be monitored by doctors.

However now sources say an unnamed third party is involved in bringing the CAS to court to order the child be put back into chemotherapy.

If the court makes that decision, it would violate Articles 10 & 24 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; that indigenous people cannot be forcibly removed from their lands without free and prior consent, and the right to use traditional medicines and health care practices without discrimination.

After completing 11-days of a 32-day round of intense chemotherapy, the child’s mother stopped the treatments because Hill says her daughter was experiencing severe reactions to standard chemo. That is when Hill opted to end chemotherapy and brought Jada home to instead start a traditional indigenous treatment program combined with other alternatives.

A doctor at McMaster University where Jada was being treated, told Hill that there has been some research done that may indicate that indigenous children do not respond to chemo as well as non-indigenous children do, and that the negative affects of chemotherapy seem to be more pronounced with indigenous children.

When Hill announced she was pulling Jada from the chemo treatments, CAS was contacted and they initiated a family visit.

Hill previously told the Two Row Times that CAS had no issue with her decision since she is willing to be cooperative with the hospital and a doctor from McMaster who would be tracking her progress. However now the CAS and McMaster Children’s Hospital are bringing the issue to court this Monday.

This is the second child from the Six Nations/New Credit community to have an ALL diagnosis and who reacted badly to standard chemotherapy treatments given at McMaster Children’s Hospital.

Earlier this year, Makayla Sault, also 11 years old, endured 11 weeks of chemotherapy at McMaster Children’s Hospital and endured severe side effects. After being informed by doctors that it is known that  First Nations Children don’t fare well in chemo, Sault’s parents pulled her from chemo in favor of treatment through Ongwehowe Onongwatri:yo medicines and alternative therapies. A decision that the New Credit Band Council and other band councils across the country supported. A large gathering of indigenous people from across the province also organized, the Makayla Defense Force, who said they were ready to peaceably ensure that the child would not be removed from her territory.

Sault’s parents previously told the Two Row Times that a doctor at McMaster told her that anyone who tells them indigenous medicines work “should be thrown in jail.”

The Sault family was also threatened by personnel from McMaster Children’s Hospital with CAS enforcement, being told that if they did not keep Makayla in treatment that CAS would be contacted and that they would likely remove all three of their children.

Eventually the CAS did become involved, however they did not have objections to the child being treated with indigenous medicines while being monitored by the family’s physician.

The CAS called a public meeting official where they publicly apologized to the Sault family. The Sault’s also received a letter of apology from McMaster Children’s Hospital earlier this summer.

Sault is now healthy and has returned to school. She continues to receive indigenous medicines to support her immune system and keep her healthy.

Within the Six Nations/New Credit communities the rate of cancer survivorship in after utilizing an holisitc indigenous method of treatment for is high. However because it is considered traditional knowledge, practitioners choose not to put their patients through analysis and judgement by an external scientific review – one that is founded on studies that scrutinize data to establish proof.

This is in contrast to the indigenous perspective which has known thousands of years of experiential proof and knowledge via oral history.

This foundational difference has created a rift – specifically in treating children with cancer. While adults have the freedom to choose the course of treatment, hospitals in Canada who feel that a child is not being provided with what they percieve as proper treatment for illnesses must report the family to the CAS.

Share this Article!

4 comments
Nahnda Garlow

Nahnda Garlow

Nahnda Garlow, Onondaga under the wing of the Beaver Clan of Six Nations, is Outreach Editor for the Two Row Times. Her popular column, Scone Dogs and Seed Beads brings weekly thoughts on current day indigenous identity. Nahnda has been a journalist with the Two Row Times since it's founding in 2013. She studied Journalism, Human Rights and Indigenous Studies at Laurier University. She is a self-proclaimed "rez girl" who also brings to the Two Row Times years of experience as a Haudenosaunee cultural interpreter, traditional dancer and beadwork aficionado. Nahnda is a member of the Canadian Association of Journalists and the Native American Journalists Association.

Related Posts

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

4 Comments

  • Texascanuk
    September 26, 2014, 1:20 pm

    I am not Aboriginal but agree that the CAS and McMaster should stay out of this.Let the parents decide. Too much Government interference.

    REPLY
  • Brandi
    September 21, 2014, 3:10 am

    UNDRIP is not applied to anyone because it is not law. So it is not a right of ours, unfortunately. The universal human rights don’t apply to us either. The UN is not a good org anyhow. The jurisdiction comes from the Indian act here.

    REPLY
  • Benjamin II
    September 20, 2014, 2:32 pm

    As the article States “would violate Articles 10 & 24 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples”

    This is secondary to the UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS which has a lot more authority in these matters.

    Section 15 makes the UNDRIP redundant., and states:

    Article 15.

    (1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.
    (2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.

    However this is a High level of Remedy and barely granted to Individuals, So proof of citizenship is important the court and claimant need to prove that the defendant is in fact Obligated to the Canadian constitution.

    The constitution of Canada needs to be studied and The application and limits of its Jurisdiction, and How it applies to OTHER nations and OTHER NATIONS CITIZENS, ie Kanienkhaka citizen, Cayuga Citizen etc:.

    Actually, Its not that hard, The proof of citizenship needs to be evidenced before jurisdiction is granted, or also if Rights are somehow WAIVED ei, hiring a Canadian Representative, which grants the courts constitutional reach, and the need for REAL Proof of citizenship is not needed.

    So,…. the paramount question is, Are these People Canadian, and if SO How!??? If NOT how will the Canadian constitution reach be granted??

    REPLY
  • Benjamin II
    September 20, 2014, 12:46 pm

    In an interview I conducted with the CAS, Andrew Koster and the Native services Branch coordinator. I had asked if they see the Six Nations as Canadian citizens, They told me that not only do they Not see them as canadian But they believe that they are citizens of the Six Nations.

    When I asked Andrew Koster about his mandate and If it applies to the Six Nations as Non Canadian Citizens, He said Its a choice, not an Obligation.

    I also Asked Andrew Koster if he thinks the Canadian constitution reaches or applies to six nations citizens, He admitted he has never thought about the constitutionality of the CAS vs The Six Nations civil society.

    REPLY

Headquarters:


Oneida Business Park Suite 124
50 Generations Drive, Box 1
Ohsweken, ON N0A 1M0
Six Nations of the Grand River Country


Email: info@tworowtimes.com


Main office: (519) 900-5535


Editorial: (519) 900-6241


Advertising: (519) 900-6373

Most Recent Articles

Share this Article!

Two Row Times

Two Row Times

LIVE NOW! CLICK TO VIEW.
CURRENTLY OFFLINE