All citizens, including First Nations, have the right to receive the services they need and to benefit from quality care and services that are culturally appropriate, safe and respectful. 

As service providers, the institutions located in First Nations communities and those of the Quebec network, as well as the staff working in these institutions, are responsible for respecting the rights of users. 

If a First Nations person, regardless of age or place of residence, believes that their rights have not been respected because they: 

  • Have been denied, in whole or in part, access to a service; 

  • Are dissatisfied with a service they have received; 

  • Were not adequately or safely treated; 

  • Were not treated courteously or respectfully; 

  • Did not receive the information necessary to participate freely in making the decisions related to their state of health; 

It is important to report the situation to existing authorities and agencies in this field. With the primary function of defending the interests of the users of health and social services, the following authorities and agencies can help you take the necessary steps to file a complaint in complete confidentiality.

1. Users’ committees 

Users’ committees are responsible for defending the rights and interests of users among all the institutions of the Quebec health and social services network by answering their questions, assist them in their complaints processes and receiving their dissatisfaction and comments. To communicate with a users’ committee, inquire directly with the concerned institution. 

2. Service Quality and Complaints Commissioner 

The Service Quality and Complaints Commissioner oversees the application of the user complaint examination procedure among the public institutions of the Quebec health and social services network. 

3. The Centres d’assistance et d’accompagnement aux plaintes 

The Centres d’assistance et d’accompagnement aux plaintes (CAAP) are regional community-based organizations that are mandated by the Minister of Health and Social Services to offer free and confidential assistance and support services to users as part of their complaint processes. 

4. Québec Ombudsperson 

The mission of the Québec Ombudsperson is to ensure respect for the rights of citizens in their relations with public services. In particular, the Québec Ombudsperson intervenes as a second remedy to prevent and correct non-respect of rights, abuses, negligence, inaction or errors committed against citizens in contact with an institution of the health and social services network. 

5. Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse 

The Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse (CDPDJ) is an independent organization operating in Quebec whose mission is to ensure the promotion of and respect for the rights of citizens as set out in the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms, the Youth Protection Act (YPA) and the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA).  

6. Canadian Human Rights Commission 

The Canadian Human Rights Commission (CHRC) ensures the promotion and protection of the human rights set out in the Canadian Human Rights Act to which all federal government bodies are subject, including First Nations governments and organizations. Its mission is to protect the fundamental principle of equal opportunities while supporting the vision of an inclusive society without discrimination. 

7. Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes 

The Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes (BEI) is a government agency that conducts investigations across the entire territory of Quebec to shed light on various events involving a police force. In particular, the BEI is responsible for investigating any allegation made by an Indigenous person in relation to a criminal offense committed by a police officer. 

You wish to take action? Here's what you can do: