For five years now, British Columbia has dedicated one week to reflect on the strengths, challenges and needs of each of you – the more than 8,000 children and youth in the care of our provincial government.
This report documents the downward spiral of a child who had great potential but never received the protection, nurturing and care she needed and deserved. Professional indifference to her life circumstances continually left her – and at times even actively placed her – in harm’s way.
The Representative for Children and Youth reviews and investigates child deaths and critical injuries to identify and thoughtfully analyze issues, particularly in service delivery. The intent is to help prevent similar deaths or injuries, and to inform improvements to services.
Dawn Thomas-Wightman has been named Acting Deputy Representative for Children and Youth in British Columbia, Representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond announced this week.
Thomas-Wightman brings nearly 20 years of direct experience in child welfare through her various roles with the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD), delegated Aboriginal Agencies (DAAs) and the Representative’s Office. She takes over from former Deputy John Greschner, who moves into a new position as Executive Lead, External Relations and Strategic Direction at the RCY.
The British Columbia government should begin providing appropriate care for children and youth who have multiple vulnerabilities – including developmental, psychological and medical needs – Representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond said today as she released her latest report.
The provincial government must step up its commitment to helping British Columbia’s most vulnerable children and youth by following through on recommendations, Representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond said today as she released her Office’s latest report Not Fully Invested: A Follow-up Report on the Representative’s Past Recommendations to Help Vulnerable Children in B.C.
Our purpose in writing is twofold: we urge you to discuss at the upcoming meeting of the Council of the Federation the national tragedy reflected in the disproportionate number of Aboriginal children taken into government care across Canada; and, we encourage you to attend to this crucial issue by developing specific national solutions.