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.
September 22, 2011 permalink
Esther Buckareff has posted an email from the OACAS to all the higher-ups in Ontario's children's aid societies.
The OACAS is worried about Powerful As God, worried enough to send an email to all of the higher-ups in Ontario's children's aid societies. Virginia Rowden outlines the issues discussed in the documentary and some others raised by anti-CAS groups.
The biggest concern seems to be the call for ombudsman oversight. Rather than correct the CAS policies criticized in the movie, the OACAS is moving to take action against Esther through her school, Ryerson. There is mention of other issues raised by alert opponents. Does CAS buy insurance against liability, or life insurance on its own wards? What happens to criminal injuries compensation for its wards?
The email contains the mystifying statement: "The issue of anti-CAS groups continues to be a topic of conversation for the provincial network groups." Fixcas has not come across the term provincial network groups before.
Esther Buckareff posted a copy of the email on the blakout.ca site, after deleting the name, or names, of CAS opponents.
CAS Response to Documentary *** Internal Email ***
Date: 9/19/2011 6:50:40 PM
Subject: Blakout and other anti-CAS Activities – brief update
TO: All CAS Board Presidents, Executive Directors, Directors of Service, Senior Counsel, Communications Leads, HR Managers, Executive Assistants
CC: OACAS Board of Directors, Staff
A brief update on some of the anti-CAS activities ..
The blakout.ca video was posted on Saturday September 17th. It may be helpful for at least one staff in each CAS management group to review the video and, if appropriate send me your comments. (note: it is about 80 minutes in length). The video includes approximately 25 participants including clinical professionals, clients, former staff, lawyers and politicians as the voices raising concerns about CASs. I did provide a “heads-up” email to the dozen CASs which are referenced in the video and/or have speakers from their communities.
In general, the messages in the video include concerns about power of CASs, funding (formula tied to children in care), vulnerability of clients, concerns from parents who have had children taken from them, concerns from adoptive parents where the adoption probation did not proceed, and staff and consultants who are critical of their former agencies. The closing segment focuses on the private member’s bill to give power to the Ombudsman.
OACAS has had one discussion with the Office of the President at Ryerson, and will be scheduling a follow-up meeting with a group of deans in the next few weeks. Concerns included the website, background materials and the trailer for the video – lack of balance and the inaccuracies.
[deleted] contacted OACAS today (September 20) with a series of questions about CAS insurance, coverage for Crown wards, Criminal Injuries Compensation. I advised that I did not have the information. Additional questions focussed on the Broader Public Sector Accountability Act and lobbying, with a question as to whether OACAS would be prohibited from lobbying under the Act (response was that not-for-profit in-house lobbying was permitted). Also asked if OACAS Board meetings were open and when our AGM is. [deleted] asked about a meeting with OACAS to express concerns. [deleted] may be back with something more specific.
[deleted] continues to post on their website, today with demands for a meeting with Chatham Kent CAS as alternative to what surely will be a campaign blitzkrieg.
Common themes across all campaigns are the call for Ombudsman oversight of CASs and a requirement for all CAS workers to be members of the College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. There are key messages in past issues notes, please let me know if you need more.
The issue of anti-CAS groups continues to be a topic of conversation for the provincial network groups. I will try to provide an update on their discussions later this week.
Please advise if you receive calls from the media, if you need any assistance with messaging or if you wish to offer advice.
Director, Policy and Mentor to the YouthCAN Program Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies
Source: Esther Buckareff
Chris Carter says he contacted OACAS on September 20. The [deleted] was really [Canada Court Watch - Chris Carter] . [deleted] continues to post on their website likely refers Canada Court Watch. See Escape from CAS.
Based on a Facebook discussion, "[deleted] continues to post on their website" is about NADADS and Dave Flook. And Esther Buckareff corrects an error of fact in the Rowden email:
Esther Buckareff The letter's reference to the adoptive parents is incorrect. Mr. Hickey's returning the child to CAS had nothing to do with the probation period and he has legal documentation from hearings that took place following the incident. The adoptive parents returned the child because the grandmother wanted her grandchild and CAS failed to tell the adoptive parents that. When CAS recieved the child back, they accused the adoptive parents of being "uncooperative" and placed the child into an abusive home against a court order. The claim against the adoptive parents was proven false in the hearings. The grandmother never got custody of her grandchild. The child was found on the streets in Orange County California and adopted out through the child welfare agency there.
Addendum: Here is word on the outcome of the CAS complaint to Ryerson.
The CAS made a formal complaint to the President's Office at Ryerson a few months ago. After several meetings with the University, the CAS' "minimum demand" was that a disclaimer be put on the film (and the website) stating something like, 'The opinions expressed in this work do not reflect the opinions of Ryerson University.' The University Deans held some kind of academic meeting where they voted against complying with this request, which they then conveyed to the CAS. After the vote, the Dean of Journalism stood up and clapped, he expressed how proud he was of his colleagues for taking a stand on this issue.