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March 2, 2010 permalink
The Cambridge rally in support of bill 93 went well. Two news articles are enclosed.
Bill 93 protest
Two dozen protesters in Cambridge today tried to draw attention to a bill they want passed for more oversight of Children's Aid Societies.
Bill 93 would allow the province's Ombudsman to investigate the CAS.
Tanya Coch was a CAS client who recently had her file closed.
She says the current process for getting complaints dealt with can take several months.
Alison Scott is the head of Family and Children's Services of Waterloo Region.
She says she is not opposed to the bill, but says there are already several safeguards in place to deal with complaints.
Her agency has 12 hundred ongoing family service files and she says they had six complaints that went to the complaints review board in the past year.
Group wants CAS accountability
Approximately 30 people representing a number of parent groups from across southern Ontario converged on Cambridge Monday to rally support for Bill 93.
Groups gathered at MPP Gerry Martiniuk’s office and the local office of Family and Children’s Services of Waterloo Region.
The provincial bill, which could be killed by the McGuinty government Thursday as parliament is prorogued, would implement oversight by Ontario Ombudsman and hold Children’s Aid Societies more accountable.
Activist Brian Caldwell told the Times that in Waterloo Region it is almost impossible to find out the number of children taken away from their families by local family and children’s services.
He also stated that in 2003 the Ministry of Child and Youth Services undertook a review to determine why the legal services required by Waterloo Region Family and Children’s Services, are higher than in other parts of the province, yet information on that review “is impossible to find”.
Bill 93 is a private members bill put forward by Hamilton East MPP Andrea Horvath. It was first read in June 2008 and if passed would allow families whose children have been removed by the province’s children aids societies a chance to be heard.
It would empower Ontario’s Ombudsman to investigate decisions or the recommendations of the children’s aid societies.
Source: Cambridge Times
Addendum: Chris Carter attended a group outside the riding office of MPP Gerry Martiniuk. His report is below.
Chris Carter Here we outside of Cambridge Ont. MPP Gerry Martiniuk's office on the day of the most recent anti-CAS Rally on March 1, 2010. Not only wouldn't Martiniuk speak to any of us (even though he was in his office), when he left he drove right by us without so much as glance. WE WERE RIGHT IN FRONT OF HIS OFFICE WITH "CHILDREN...'S AID DESTROYS FAMILIES" SIGNS AND MARTINIUK COULDN'T EVEN BE BOTHERED TO GIVE A MINUTE OF HIS TIME. Considering that the Waterloo Regional is widely recognized as one of the most aggressively destructive CASs in this province: MARTINIUK YOUR SILENCE IS (AND HAS BEEN FOR MANY YEARS) DEAFENING!