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Review of CFSA

April 7, 2009 permalink

Ontario's Child and Family Services Act is subject to review at five year intervals, the next in 2010. John Dunn is watching, trying to prevent a repeat of the previous review in 2005 in which all but the last month was conducted in secret, with only social service providers participating. Following the excerpt below, John Dunn has an extensive record of correspondence on his blog.



Monday, April 06, 2009

Ontario Min. Children and Youth Services Staff withholding information on 5-year review of Child and Family Services Act

According to Section 224 of Ontario's Child and Family Services Act the Minister (the Hon. Deb Matthews) shall conduct a review of the Act or provisions of it the Minister specifies every five years and the Minister is to inform the public when such a review begins and what provisions of the Act are to be included in the review.

The previous review of the Act was conducted and reported in 2004-05. The 2005 report by the Minister mentioned the fact that the Ministry initiated consultations with certain stakeholders (agencies and community organizations) over the preceding year, however the public were not informed of this review generally until just 30 days before the report was to be made public.

This time, the Foster Care Council of Canada is pro actively contacting the Ministry through Chris Shantz -- Special Assistant to the Minister who was assigned to liaise with us -- on a monthly basis to find out when the Ministry says the consultations have begun so that we can avoid a repeat of the last review of the Act where the Minister only gave the public 30 days to organize and provide input into the Act.

These e-mails will be used to keep track of their behaviour in relation to the five year review of the Act. So far, (April 06, 2009 e-mail enclosed) the Ministry has denied any consultations have taken place in relation to the Act.

Incidentally, the Council has been made aware that the Ministry has sent surveys around to various Children's Aid Societies in Ontario to study the complaints procedures. This may be related to the pending review of the Act in 2010. If so it will appear in the Minister's 2010 review.

The history of communications so-far are included below for your information:

Source: Afterfostercare blog April 6, 2009