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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Dr. Jennifer Charlesworth is British Columbia's Acting Representative for Children and Youth. She was appointed effective Aug. 31, 2018.
Dr. Charlesworth has worked in the B.C. social and health care sectors since 1977. She lives in the traditional territories of the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples. She is an award-winning teacher, author, activist and a parent of two vibrant young women who remind her daily of the power and promise of young people.
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Each region has staff known as “dispute resolution consultants” who listen to complaints and help resolve issues. You can find out how to contact the dispute resolution consultant for your region by asking your foster parent or caregiver, or by calling the Ministry of Children and Family Development customer service line at 1-877-387-7027. You can also contact us to get an advocate to assist you to connect with the dispute resolution consultant, or suggest other ways to voice your concerns.
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.
As a child in care, your rights include the right to participate in social and recreation activities if available and appropriate, and according to your abilities and interests. Contact us to learn more about the rights of children and youth in care, and what to do if you feel you are being denied your rights.
If you are not satisfied with the outcome of the dispute resolution process, you have the option of taking your complaint to the Office of the Ombudsperson. Contact us for more information and assistance in using this process.