The Representative for Children and Youth supports children, youth and families who need help in dealing with the child-serving system.
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Bernard Richard is B.C.'s new Representative for Children and Youth. He was appointed effective Feb. 16, 2017.
Mr. Richard is a bilingual lawyer whose early career was in social work and as Secretary General of the Société Nationale de l'Acadie. He was elected to the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick, where he served from 1991 to 2003. During this time, he held several cabinet positions and also served as leader of the Official Opposition, Opposition House Leader and chair of the Official Opposition caucus.
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You will be connected to a youth and young adult advocate who will listen to your situation and your needs. They can offer you support, assistance, information and advice, as well as coach you to have a voice with decision-makers. If needed, they can also speak on your behalf to make sure your opinions are valued in the decision-making process.
Advocates are there to act on your behalf. The Rep’s Office doesn’t work for a Ministry or Community Living BC – it works for you.
Part of the Representative’s role is to ensure that the programs and services in place are meeting the needs of children and youth in B.C. She has the authority to monitor and review these services and make recommendations for change if necessary.
You can have a family member, friend, support worker or someone else you trust with you when you call the Rep. Otherwise, you can have that person call the Rep for you. For the fastest result, it is best to either call by yourself or have someone with you when you call. That way you will be connected with an advocate within one business day. Callers requesting advocacy services for you will be responded to within three business days.