For the eighth consecutive year, British Columbia is marking Child and Youth in Care Week, a time when we honour the strength, resilience and talents of those young people who are living in the care of the provincial government.
Representative for Children and Youth Bernard Richard today kicked off an 18-month #Rep4Rights outreach tour that will reach into communities across B.C. to educate children and youth about their fundamental rights. The focus of the tour will be on Indigenous children and youth, who are greatly over-represented in the provincial child welfare system.
Social pediatrician Dr. Christine Loock was today honoured with the Janusz Korczak medal for child rights advocacy for her lifetime of work with vulnerable families in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. The medal, awarded jointly by the Representative for Children and Youth and the Janusz Korczak Association of Canada, recognizes outstanding contributions to the promotion of child rights in the spirit of Dr. Janusz Korczak.
My Office applauds the B.C. government for taking the first steps towards creating a strategy to reduce poverty in B.C. by soliciting the views of citizens. I am pleased to offer this submission on behalf of the Office of the Representative for Children and Youth (RCY) to help inform this strategy.
Following last week's emergency meeting on Indigenous child welfare in Ottawa, convened by Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott and Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett, the Canadian Council of Child and Youth Advocates (CCCYA) has issued the following statement:
The provincial government is faltering in its efforts to find permanent homes for the children and youth in its care – particularly for Indigenous children and youth – shows a report released today by the Representative for Children and Youth.
Today, as we mark National Child Day and the beginning of Child Rights Education Week (Nov. 20-26), we encourage federal, provincial and municipal governments, and all Canadians, to remember the fundamental rights of children and youth.
The purpose of the Representative for Children and Youth’s reviews and investigations of child deaths and critical injuries is to identify and thoughtfully analyze issues, particularly in service delivery. The intent is to help prevent similar deaths or injuries in the future and to inform improvements to services.
In April 2017, the federal government tabled Bill C-45, An Act Respecting cannabis and to amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, the Criminal Code and Other Acts, in the Canadian parliament to legalize and regulate the recreational use of cannabis in Canada.
In July 2017, the Canadian Council of Child and Youth Advocates sent a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau outlining concerns with the proposed legislation with respect to its potential impacts on the health and safety of children and youth.
The provincial government must take action to reduce significant gaps in the academic achievement of children and youth in care, including the provision of specific funding to each school district dedicated to supporting the learning needs of these students, recommends a report released today by B.C.'s Representative for Children and Youth.