Press one of the expand buttons to see the full text of an article. Later press collapse to revert to the original form. The buttons below expand or collapse all articles.
January 29, 2010 permalink
Children in Ontario's foster care system often get accommodations in sub-standard housing, get a typical allowance of $10 per week and sometimes get a nutritionally inadequate diet. Here is a story of a foster teenager who gets a three-bedroom 1,800 square foot home to himself and lives on an allowance of $150 per week. He has two caseworkers looking after him, one during the day and another at night. What makes him so special? He is an accused sex criminal. No, this is not a spoof from the Onion.
Sex crime suspect, 14, lives 'like a king'
14-year-old alone in group home, By TOM GODFREY, QMI Agency
TORONTO - A 14-year-old boy facing sex charges in Toronto is the sole resident of a $350,000 Mississauga group home and gets $150 a week for allowance, officials say.
The youth, who can't be identified because of his age, is supervised by a case worker during the day and another at night, the Toronto Sun learned on Thursday.
The home is run by the Children's Aid Society.
The case surfaced two weeks ago after the youth was arrested in Downsview by police and charged with sex offences against a male family member.
Det.-Const. Michelle Bond of 31 Division Family Services Unit said the boy was charged under the Criminal Code for sex offences and is before the courts. He was released at a bail hearing providing he remains at the home.
Officers from 31 Division said they were called to a North York address by a person urgently requesting help.
Sources said the boy was allowed to visit family members as part of a rehabilitation program when the incident occurred.
He has been living at the group home in a new Peel subdivision since 2008.
Officials were surprised to learn the youth was the only resident of a home that "any family would want."
The boy, who has the latest computer games, receives his allowance in addition to having his meals prepared and laundry washed, sources said.
"He lives like a king," one insider said. "I am concerned as a citizen as to how much money is being spent on this case."
"About 90% of the neighbours on that street won't know there's a group home among them," one worker said. "It is in a nice neighbourhood with new homes."
Sources said a number of CAS group homes in the GTA are for use by single youths. This one is a three-bedroom home, about 1,800 square feet, not intended for more than one resident.
Peter Spadoni, a spokesman for the ministry of children and youth services, said his officials couldn't comment on the case as it involves a youth before the courts.
"We just don't have enough information and it is not something we would talk about," Spadoni said on Thursday.
Rob Thompson of the Toronto Children's Aid Society couldn't comment because of privacy laws.
"Once a person is in the care of the CAS, the amount of information that can be given out is almost zero," Thompson said.
Tracy MacIsaac of Peel Children's Aid said she also couldn't comment because of privacy laws.
Thanks to Karen for finding this item