Samantha Chalifoux carries a bouquet of recent flowers and lays them on a memorial in entrance of the group residence the place her son Traevon Chalifoux-Desjarlais died. 

“I am not coping with it nicely in any respect,” she says.

Her 17-year-old Cree son died in a government-run Abbotsford, B.C., group residence on Sept. 14, however his physique was not discovered till 4 days later.

She mentioned she visits the memorial to really feel nearer to him.

Chalifoux says her son was a caring and outgoing highschool pupil who actually needed to get a job. 

“He used to at all times inform me, ‘I’ll discover a actually good job that pays some huge cash and I’ll provide you with some huge cash,’ and I used to inform him that you do not have to provide me any cash since you’re my son,” Chalifoux mentioned by tears.

Flowers and candles on the web site of a memorial for Chalifoux-Desjarlais, who died on the Abbotsford group residence. (Angela Sterritt/CBC)

She says she’d textual content him day by day and when she did not hear from him for a few days she began to panic, calling his dad, mates and cousins.

The house, which is run by a B.C. authorities Aboriginal company known as Xyolhemeylh, or the Fraser Valley Aboriginal Youngsters and Household Companies Society, filed a lacking individual’s report on Sept. 14.

Chalifoux mentioned she known as the Abbotsford police a number of occasions, asking if they might “ping” her son’s telephone — or ship a sign and use the responding information to find out the telephone’s location. 

The Abbotsford police corroborated this, saying “a telephone quantity that was supplied to the Abbotsford police was pinged; nevertheless, the ping was unsuccessful because it was a ‘third get together calling service.'” 

4 days after the lacking individual’s report was filed, police searched the bed room of the group residence and Chalifoux-Desjarlais’s physique was present in his closet.

‘I trusted them’

Due to the delicate nature of the investigation, police say they’re unable to offer particular particulars surrounding the teenager’s reason behind loss of life. 

The Abbotsford Police Division’s Main Crime Unit concluded no criminality was suspected.

Chalifoux mentioned there have been crimson flags whereas her son was within the group residence. She says he usually texted saying he was hungry and was not being allowed meals from the group residence workers, and he additionally complained he was not allowed recent bedding.

“They’re alleged to be there to assist help him, to assist him really feel comfy, to assist [him] really feel welcomed however they failed him,” she mentioned standing beside the group residence.

“I trusted them with my son, and now I do not even have my son with me,” she mentioned.

‘I positively do not ever wish to see one other little one undergo this, I am not letting this go,” says Chalifoux, taking a look at a photograph of her son. (Angela Sterritt/CBC)

The Ministry of Youngsters and Household Growth, liable for the Aboriginal company, mentioned it was not capable of touch upon the therapy of Chalifoux-Desjarlais throughout his keep on the residence, about his loss of life or the rest associated to the house due to the provincial election. 

B.C.’s consultant for youngsters and youth Jennifer Charlesworth mentioned whereas she can be not capable of examine due to the election, she is reviewing the case and making ready for an investigation. 

Chalifoux-Desjarlais was within the residence as a part of a voluntary custody settlement with the ministry. His mother informed the CBC that the association was to be short-term and that she was serving to him search for his personal place.

“If I’d have identified this was going to occur, I’d have stored him with me,” Chalifoux mentioned.

“They’re alleged to be there to assist him, to assist help him, to assist deliver him up. And so they all failed. And so they did not solely fail him, they failed me,” she mentioned. 

Sarah Rauch, Chalifoux’s lawyer, stands in entrance of the group residence the place Chalifoux-Desjarlais died. (Angela Sterritt/CBC)

Her lawyer Sarah Rauch, who has efficiently represented different Indigenous dad and mom with issues about MCFD, known as this a tough story however one that’s all too acquainted. 

“Sadly, it is not that shocking to me. I believe the legacy of kids in care and Indigenous kids in care is well-known and spoken about, however there’s nonetheless not sufficient achieved,” she mentioned. 

Rauch mentioned she’s going to observe the course of her shopper, pushing for a public inquiry and probably taking different authorized actions.

“I would really like justice for my son,” Chalifoux mentioned.

“I’ll by no means get my son again and I’ll do the whole lot I can to be his voice and to face up.”

“I positively do not ever wish to see one other little one undergo this, I am not letting this go, ” she mentioned.

The BC Coroners Service investigation continues.


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