As many as 98 children of missing and murdered women from B.C.'s Lower Mainland, including the children of the victims of serial killer Robert Pickton, are eligible for a share of a $4.9-million compensation fund.

The federal and B.C. governments, and the City of Vancouver, announced the money would amount to $50,000 each.

The offer is intended to provide the children of women identified by the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry (MWCI) with opportunities to enhance their education, housing, or other circumstances, the province said in a news release sent out Tuesday morning.

B.C. Attorney General and Minister of Justice Suzanne Anton said the new fund makes compensation available to all known, living, biological children of the women identified in the MWCI report as missing or murdered.

"Commissioner Oppal detailed our shared responsibility for the exceptional and troubling circumstances that contributed to the disappearance and death of dozens of B.C. women," she said. "In turn, he called on us to compensate their children — and we are doing so."

Establishing a compensation fund for families of the victims was one of the key recommendations that came out of the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry.

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Serial killer Robert Pickton was convicted on six counts of second-degree murder, but is suspected of killing dozens of women who went missing from Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. (Vancouver Police Department)

On Monday, lawyer Jason Gratl announced that $50,000 settlements were being accepted by 11 of 13 families whose loved ones were victims of serial killer Robert Pickton. The 13 families were parties in a civil lawsuit against the three levels of government.

"In offering the compensation, the three funding partners are hopeful they will reach a settlement with the 13 litigants involved in an ongoing civil action related to the loss of their mothers," the province said in a statement released Tuesday.

Clarifications

  • An earlier version of this story only referred to children of the victims of serial killer Robert Pickton. The compensation offer also extends to children of other B.C. missing and murdered women.
    Mar 18, 2014 12:39 PM PT
With files from The Canadian Press