"Children’s aid societies launch major training reforms?"

"Children’s aid societies launch major training reforms?"
Posted on July 30, 2017 | Derek Flegg | Written on July 30, 2017
Comments
Letter type:
Blog Post

Author's Note:

Author's Note:

Unfortunately due the conduct and actions of past and current employees of the Ontario's children's aid societies, the workers and the management, all new front line workers/employees will have to take special training that includes a focus on equity, human rights and anti-racism in an anti-oppressive framework.

 

Powerful As God on IMDB - The Children's Aid Societies of Ontario is a documentary that delves into society's most controversial and secretive topics. The film navigates 'truth' by engaging twenty-six witnesses with diverse experiences into conversation. By facilitating a voice for individuals whose lives have been tragically affected, with observations and recommendations by experts who have worked directly with the agency (such as doctors, social workers and lawyers), the film reveals a child welfare system plagued by systemic and bureaucratic abuse that urgently requires public attention. Financed by tax dollars and wielding extraordinary power, the Children's Aid Society is deconstructed to reveal a broken system where employees have been heard to describe their influence over children and families to be as powerful as god.

 

The film, Powerful As God, won the MADA award (Children’s Issues) at Commffest Film Festival in Toronto, 2012. The documentary screened at three festivals and is now released online (Blackout.ca), it was nationally broadcast on television during 2013, and received television, radio and newspaper media coverage.

 

"Revamped curriculum launched for Ontario’s child protection social workers"

“We’re taking it up to that next level so that the public has confidence that when someone knocks on their door they know that they have met these minimum requirements,” says Scary Mary Ballantyne, CEO of the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies (OACAS) whose association represents all but three of Ontario’s societies.

(Is "at least meeting the minimums" really the key to quality child welfare?) 

In January 2017, the Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies (OACAS) launched a revamped set of curriculum for Ontario’s child protection workers. The Child Welfare Pathway to Authorization Series is designed to be more responsive and better reflect the realities of child welfare work in Ontario using an anti-oppressive framework. New training will cover topics such as equity, human rights, and anti-racism.

Imagine that, an agency that has been called as "Powerful As God" needs anti-oppressive, anti-racist human rights training in whatever a anti-oppressive framework is. Sounds like an admission, doesn't it. Power and money without ethical oversight really does corrupt.

The Former Privacy Commissioner wrote in her 2013 annual report.

"Many parents and families complain about how difficult it is, if not impossible, to obtain information from children’s aid agencies. Many citizens complain that CAS agencies appear to operate under a veil of secrecy. CAS workers are making decisions which are literally destroying families, yet there is little or no accountability for their actions short of a lawsuit" said former Privacy Commissioner Ann Cavoukian.

(after the damage to the child and family has been done.)

"As the law stands now clients of the Ontario children's aid society under Wynne's liberals are routinely denied a timely (often heavily censored) file disclosure before the court begins making decisions (a practice that has continued to this day) and the "clients" can not request files/disclosure under the freedom of information act nor can censored information reviewed by the Privacy Commissioner of Ontario or the federal counter-part."

(Has the children's aid society become a private government funded corporation keeping secret files on Canadian citizens?)

Watch and listen as Sun Wai an unregistered child protection social worker explains the children's aid society's anti-oppressive policy with her supervisor listening.

OACAS CEO Scary Mary Ballantyne says, the next step is to have Ontario's estimated 5,160 child protection social workers registered and regulated by a professional college. Fifty-five per cent have a bachelor's (BSW) or master's degree in social work. A BSW is the minimum required to join the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers, which is discussing the registration process with societies. Apr 03, 2016

Begs the questions, why does it take more than 18 years to register and how many wouldn't qualify at all? The other 45%?

Social Work and Social Service Work Act, 1998, S.O. 1998, c. 31

Nancy Simone, president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees local representing 275 workers at the Catholic Children’s Aid Society of Toronto, argues child protection workers already have levels of oversight that include workplace supervisors, family court judges that were once employed as lawyers for the children's aid society, coroners’ inquests and annual case audits by the ministry and the union representing child protection workers is firmly opposed to ethical oversight from a professional college, and the Ministry of Children and Youth Services, which regulates and funds child protection, is so far staying out of the fight.. “Our work is already regulated to death.”

What fight? The union CUPE is against it, the CAS doesn't require it despite the law and the government is staying out if it - so who is fighting who?

WHY IS MANDATORY COLLEGE REGISTRATION A PROBLEM?

INTERNAL REVIEW PROCESSES ALREADY IN PLACE:

"One of the central roles of a regulatory college is to discipline members."

Children’s Aid Societies already have an internal secret complaint review panel as well as an armslength process through the Child and Family Services Review Board. Given that complaints processes are already in place, it is unclear what additional role college registration would provide. A third collegeled disciplinary review process would add another layer of unnecessary bureaucracy and have a serious impact on the workload for any staff involved.

IS AN INTERNAL COMPLAINT PROCESS THE SAME AS THE ETHICAL OVERSIGHT OF THE ONTARIO COLLEGE OF SOCIAL WORK?

"It is unclear what additional role college registration would provide?" says Mary Ballantyne.

HOW ABOUT THE PUBLIC'S TRUST AND DISCIPLINARY ACTION?

When the children's aid society say they have more oversight than anyone else while every journalist working for the mainstream media in Ontario say the only oversight comes directly from the Ontario government - who do you believe?

Q & A with OACAS’ CEO about neglect.

"How does child welfare help children who have been neglected? One of the biggest challenges for a child welfare worker is determining what is at the root of the neglect."

The effect of provincial policies on struggling families was especially apparent in the late 1990s, when the Conservative government slashed welfare payments and social service funding while at the same time, it introduced in child protection the notion of maltreatment by “omission,” including not having enough food in the home and this after giving the society what amounted to an unlimited funding scheme. The number of children taken into care spiked as did their funding.

ANOTHER KIND OF ETHICAL OVERSIGHT THE SOCIETY HAS MANAGED TO AVIOD. The Private Security and Investigative Services Act.

DO ONTARIO CHILDREN'S AID SOCIETY'S WORKERS FIT THE DEFINITION OF A PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR UNDER THE ACT AND SHOULD THEY BE ACCOUNTABLE TO AN INVESTIGATIVE CODE OF CONDUCT?

A private investigator is a person who performs work, for remuneration, that consists primarily of conducting investigations in order to provide information. 2005, c. 34, s. 2 (2).

The Private Security and Investigative Services Act, 2005 (PSISA) regulates the private security industry. The PSISA was proclaimed into force on August 23, 2007 to help professionalize the security industry, increase public safety and ensure practitioners receive proper training and are qualified to provide PROTECTIVE SERVICES. The PSISA and its regulations govern the way the private security industry operates in Ontario.

 

About The Author

Advocates for family preservation against unwarranted intervention by government funded non profit agencies.

comments powered by Disqus