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Bill 42 Introduced
March 27, 2013 permalink
Today Monique Taylor introduced legislation to provide for ombudsman oversight of Ontario's children's aid societies, tagged as bill 42. Pat Niagara has the first report. His video of his trip to Queens Park includes Monique Taylor on the floor of the legislature. YouTube and a local copy (mp4).
Ombudsman CAS Oversight Bill 42 PASSED Today
Today NDP MPP Monique Taylor again introduced the Bill 42 for Ombudsman Oversight of the Children's Aid Society in Ontario into the Legislative Assembly of Ontario.
The Bill if passed would allow all 47 of Ontario’s Private Children’s Aid Societies open to investigations by the Ontario Ombudsman. Currently we’re the only Province in Canada who allows their private board of directors to oversee themselves for both internal and external complaints.
A number of Members of the Ontario Coalition for Accountability attended the First Bill 42 Reading today for Ombudsman Oversight of Children's Aid Societies and are pleased to announce that the BILL PASSED
On March 27, 2013 members of the Ontario Coalition for Accountability attended Queen's Park for the introduction and first reading of Bill 42, an amendment to the Ombudsman Act to include Children's Aid Societies. This bill did pass and now carries on to Second reading on April 11, 2013
Source: CAS ONTARIO blog
Source: Facebook, Stop the CAS ...
Here is the actual bill:
Bill 42, Ombudsman Amendment Act (Children's Aid Societies), 2013
Bill 42 2013
An Act to amend the Ombudsman Act with respect to children’s aid societies
Note: This Act amends the Ombudsman Act. For the legislative history of the Act, see the Table of Consolidated Public Statutes – Detailed Legislative History at www.e-Laws.gov.on.ca.
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows:
1. The Ombudsman Act is amended by adding the following section:
Ombudsman may investigate children’s aid societies
14.1 (1) Anything that the Ombudsman may do under this Act in respect of a governmental organization, the Ombudsman may do in respect of a society as defined in subsection 3 (1) of the Child and Family Services Act.
(2) If the Ombudsman does or proposes to do anything in respect of a society as defined in subsection 3 (1) of the Child and Family Services Act, any reference in this Act to a governmental organization is deemed to be a reference to the society.
2. This Act comes into force on the day it receives Royal Assent.
3. The short title of this Act is the Ombudsman Amendment Act (Children’s Aid Societies), 2013.
The Bill amends the Ombudsman Act to allow the Ombudsman to investigate any decision or recommendation made or any act done or omitted in the course of the administration of a children’s aid society.
Source: Legislative Assembly of Ontario
The CBC covered the story:
Hamilton MPP reintroduces children's aid oversight bill
Private member's bill that would have given the Ombudsman power to investigate died when legislature was prorogued
The MPP for Hamilton Mountain has reintroduced a private member’s bill that would allow Ontario’s Ombudsman to investigate children’s aid societies (CAS).
Monique Taylor, the NDP's critic for the Ministry of Child and Youth Services, tried to move legislation through Queen’s Park last year. It made it past second reading, but no further.
“Unfortunately the government prorogued and it died at that time,” Taylor said.
The bill would give Ontario's Ombudsman, Andre Marin, independent oversight over the societies' decisions.
Taylor raised a Toronto child abuse case involving a CAS ward during question period this week. She said it was timely that she was scheduled to reintroduce her private members bill on Wednesday.
“We need someone to be an independent, arms-length agency that has properly trained investigators to deal with all cases,” Taylor told CBC Hamilton.
A spokesperson for the Minister of Child and Youth Services, Teresa Piruzza, said the minister looks forward to discussion of the bill in the legislature, but also pointed to steps that have already been taken regarding children’s aid oversight.
In 2007, the province created the Independent Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth, which responds to concerns from those who are seeking or receiving services under the Child and Family Services Act and the Education Act.
CAS is also accountable to the courts when children are apprehended, and complaints may also be investigated internally or go to the province via the Child and Family Services Review Board.
The Ombudsman has been asking for the ability to investigate complaints for the past 35 years. The bill has been introduced before, but Taylor's was the first to make it past second reading.