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Social Workers Bury Their Mistakes
November 18, 2005 permalink
Here is one way to avoid reporting deaths in the foster care system.
Hundreds of child deaths in B.C. not reviewed
Last Updated Thu, 17 Nov 2005 15:51:49 EST
British Columbia failed to properly review the deaths of 713 children following massive civil service cuts in 2002, the province's solicitor general said on Thursday.
John Les called the situation completely unacceptable, saying the province will launch a complete investigation into how the cases were overlooked.
He has also promised that all the cases will be reviewed.
While most of the 713 deaths were accidental or natural, about 100 are homicide, suicide or remain unexplained.
The problem dates back to 2002, when Premier Gordon Campbell's Liberal government embarked on the largest cuts to the civil service in the province's history.
The government cut the children's commission, an independent body that reviewed all child deaths, shifting responsibility to the coroner's office, with a fraction of the budget.
The provincial coroner's office says it didn't have enough money or legislative authority to undertake the job.
Campbell has accepted responsibility for what he called a systematic breakdown.
NDP critic Adrian Dix calls the figure "staggering" and says the government is clearly guilty of negligence.