Category: Aboriginal News

ALIGN Members – Procurement Update November 20, 2017

Procurement Update November 20, 2017

Late last week there was an announcement that Campus Based Residential Care will be tendered shortly.  For those of you who provide that service please stay tuned as I am sure you will receive information soon.

I am told that there has been a procurement plan (5 year) placed before the Minister and at this point there is no permission to move forward with anything other than this one area.  I am aware that most of you have contracts that are set to expire on March 31, 2018.

The likelihood is that most of your contracts will be renewed at the same rates.  Some may be able to re-negotiate some terms but for the most part status quo may be the outcome.  I realize that this means no increases in any part of your operation for a long time.

Budget 2018 may not see any changes or increases.  We already have a hint of that with no increases to foster care rates.

As always we will continue to advocate for a plan and for hopeful injections to the wages if nothing else.  We need to have some clear information and in reality you need to be thinking about this already.  If you have NO increases to your contracts and you are aware of the Bill 17 impacts, what will you do in the new fiscal year- i.e.  Do you need to close beds, close programs, are you ok, decrease services and if so what?  It would be very helpful if you can let me know what you think you will need to do if there are no changes of any kind.

I would appreciate if you can let me know what you think will happen and if you have any other impacts starting to creep in, like increasing turnover rates, etc.   This information is very helpful as we strategize a plan to move forward.  If we can we will also make the information available to you so that you can go out and advocate on your or your sectors behalf as we suspect there will be a need for political action.  It is the politicians who are stopping things as treasury board.

Again we are trying to give concrete examples of the impacts of no procurement (negotiations or tenders) and Bill 17.  I need to have that picture from you to share at table with the Ministry officials and the politicians.

Thanks for sharing I look forward to your information and trying to see what we can do to move the financial pendulum.  If you could send me your story or information by November 30 I would appreciate it.

Rhonda Barraclough – ALIGN Executive Director

RhondaB@alignab.ca

Request for ALIGN Member Agencies to Submit Banked OT Hours and Average Salary

November 20, 2017
RE: Bill 17

Bill 17: Alberta’s Fair And Family Friendly Workplaces Act: the new labor code comes into effect January 1, 2018. There are many impacts on your agency and you need to be aware of those. The ALIGN Website has some information and the Ministry of Labor has more. One of largest effects for agencies and specifically anyone who works a 24 hour operation or flexible evening and on call hours will need to consider this:

• You will have to allow employees to take time off in lieu of receiving overtime pay at a rate of 1.5 hours for each hour of overtime worked, as opposed to the previous 1 hour for each hour of overtime.
• There are clear guidelines on how much someone can work in a specified period
• New types of unpaid leaves
• Changes to maternity leaves

There are many other changes your need to make sure you are aware for and are planning for.

Financially the biggest area will be the overtime. We are trying to advocate with the Ministries (CS & CSS) that banked time is a substantial cost and that the agencies cannot shoulder that cost. We have encouraged the Ministry to have a plan in place to compensate agencies for overtime and have explained how this is not just as simple as stopping overtime from happening especially in 24 hour operations and that due to contractual obligations they also can’t just increase the costs – therefore we believe there is a need for a compensation plan on the part of the Ministries.

To help paint a picture for the Deputy Minister of Children Services – Darlene Bouwsema, I need as many folks as possible to let us know their current bank overtime hours in a year and what the average salary for those employees is. I am making a graphic to show the Deputy Ministers. Darlene and Shannon Marchand the Deputy Ministry for Community and Support Services are meeting with the Ministry of Labor Deputy Ministry soon. We have also offered to arrange for them to meet with some of the CFO’s from the agencies and the Ministry to discuss impacts further. At this point we do not know if or when there may be answers. We would like to be able to send a further sample of the overtime impacts at this time because we can at least quantify that number.

Please send a note to me RhondaB@alignab.ca with that information by the end of this week – November 24, 2017

See Related Info

Child Review Panel Update November 2017

Speaking OUT: A Special Report on LGBTQ2S+ Young People in the Child Welfare and Youth Justice Systems OCYA November 2017

Video – Speaking Out: A Special Report on LGBTQ2S+ Young People in the Child Welfare and Youth Justice Systems

Children’s Services Minister Danielle Larivee issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Special Report Speaking OUT, November 20, 2017

‘We should do more’: Child advocate tells government about LGBTQ2S+ youth CBC News November 20, 2017

OCYA Report: Children’s Services Minister Responds November 6, 2017
Children’s Services Minister Danielle Larivee issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Reviews released today.

Investigative Review: 16-Year-Old Dillon November 2, 2017
Child and Youth Advocate releases investigative review involving the serious injury of a youth
Read the full news release here: Read the Investigative Review and recommendations here:

Global News November 2, 2017 Jane Philpott calls emergency meeting with provinces on Indigenous child welfare

See All Child Review Panel

Foundations of Caregiver Support: Models of Care Literature Review Final Report

Foundations of Caregiver Support: Models of Care Literature Review Final Report Submitted to Foundations of Caregiver Support Steering Committee By PolicyWise for Children & Families and Child and Youth Services, Human Services

The purpose of this project is to identify and describe evidence on leading and promising models of care that use trauma informed approaches including the pillars of knowledge and practice described in the FCS (2015) document: child development, trauma, and loss and grief.

The following five models of care were found to be explicitly informed by the evidence related to the inclusion criteria:

ARC (Attachment, Self-Regulation, and Competency)

Trauma Systems Therapy

Sanctuary Model

Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT)1

CARE (Child-Adult Relationship Enhancement)

This report provides:

Descriptions of each of the five models of care;

An overview of the evidence related to each of these models; and,

High level details on costing for each of the models.

The five models of care represent only the care models that met the criteria for inclusion developed by PolicyWise in consultation with stakeholders. The elements of these models illustrate criteria for consideration when providing services that use a trauma-informed lens. While these models are considered to be among emerging, promising, or leading practices, the results described in the report are based on implementation in different locations in North America and may not represent the actual results achieved when applying them in the context of Alberta. The models included are a limited sub-set of evidence-informed services and supports that may be provided to families by Alberta Children’s Services under the Child Youth and Family Enhancement Act.

The information provided in the report will inform Child and Youth Services procurement and tendering process and ensure future contracted programs and services demonstrate the use of evidence-informed, trauma-informed models of care.

Related: Foundations of Caregiver Support 2015

 

Signs of Safety October 2017 Update

Signs of Safety working group.  Children Services has implemented Signs of Safety 2 day Provincial Delegation training. The working group is looking at how to implement a plan that insures all current CS staff also receive the 2 day Provincial training, whether or not they have had previous training in the past. This is to ensure everyone has received the same provincial specific training.  A 1 day training has been developed for agency partners and caregivers. The committee is in the process of developing a plan to offer the training provincially

Signs of Safety Newsletter October 2017

The first presentation video from sofsgathering2017 is now up. Watch Demonstrating Safety Within the Drug Epidemic

Visit Signs of Safety Home Page or ALIGN Signs of Safety Related Resources, Initiatives and Updates

New Report: Harvard Center on the Developing Child: Three Principles to Improve Outcomes for Children and Families

Three Principles to Improve Outcomes for Children and Families identifies three guiding principles for decision-making processes aimed at improving outcomes for children and families.

Excerpt: Recent advances in the science of brain development offer us an unprecedented opportunity to solve some of society’s most challenging problems, from widening disparities in school achievement and economic productivity to costly health problems across the lifespan. Understanding how the experiences children have starting at birth, even prenatally, affect lifelong outcomes—combined with new knowledge about the core capabilities adults need to thrive as parents and in the workplace—provides a strong foundation upon which policymakers and civic leaders can design a shared and more effective agenda…

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Free Online AFMC Addiction Primer Series

The Palix Foundation has partnered with the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada to develop a primer on addiction and its connection to early brain and biological development. Designed for undergraduate students, this free learning resource includes virtual patients, an e-textbook, and a podcast series.

The Role of Caregivers in Assessing and Managing Risk Related to Opioid Use – A Tip Sheet

This Tip Sheet that has been developed by a committee representing provincial Children Services , AFPA and ALIGN.

The Role of Caregivers in Assessing and Managing Risk Related to Opioid Use – A Tip Sheet
As a caregiver you are the closest person to the day-to-day activities of a child or youth who may be using opioids. You have a key role on the team who together ensure the tasks in the above diagram occur, plans are implemented and reviewed as circumstances change.

The tip sheet is going out to all the members as agencies have all types of caregivers providing service to children, youth and families. Specific Caregiver Training has also be developed and will be piloted for the fist time at the Alberta Foster Parent Conference this coming weekend. Once feedback is incorporated into the training  the manual will be made available for all to use. I will keep you posted as information becomes available. In the meantime please give the TIP Sheet the widest distribution. Questions can be directed to Cathym@alignab.ca

See Additional or Related Opioid Information

 

Child Review Panel News October 2017

Edmonton Journal
Child intervention panel extends its timeline October 4, 2017

Edmonton Journal
‘That system abandoned me’: Child intervention panel hears from Paul First Nation October 2, 2017

Child Intervention Practice Framework (CIPF):
Child Intervention Practice committee is presently reviewing how to create consistencies and best practice provincially through the below initiatives. This committee consists of Regional managers. ALIGN and the AFPA.

See All Child Intervention Review Panel

Three New Children’s Service Divisions and Three New ADM’s

Correspondence form Darlene Bouwsema Deputy Minister Children’s Services to ALIGN ED Rhonda Barraclough October 2, 2017

As you may know, the creation of Children’s Services provided an opportunity to re-imagine the organization and its structure to achieve the renewed mandate and focus on continuously improving the services provided to children, youth and families.

As part of the evolution of Children’s Services, I am pleased to officially announce that we have identified three Children’s Services-specific divisions and the Assistant Deputy Ministers (ADMs) who will lead them. Each portfolio will be guided by a leader who has a great respect for the work happening in this ministry, and an unwavering commitment to public service.  I am confident that under their guidance, the Ministry of Children’s Services will be well-positioned for success. Effective October 2, 2017:

  • Gloria Iatridis, ADM will lead the Policy, Innovation and Indigenous Connections Division with responsibility for strategic policy and planning, initiative management (including the Ministerial Panel for Child Intervention), corporate quality assurance and Indigenous and community connections;
  • Mark Hattori, ADM will lead the Family and Community Resiliency Division with responsibility for early intervention and prevention programming, community programs and early childhood programs and the Early Learning and Child Care Centres initiative;
  • And Rae-Ann Lajeunesse, ADM will lead the Child Intervention Division with a singular focus on the child intervention system.

I would like to reiterate that no ongoing work will be interrupted. The Ministry of Children’s Services will continue to focus on priorities including the work happening across the province to serve families, the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention and affordable, quality, accessible child care offered through Early Learning and Child Care Centres

There will be no lay-offs as a result of changes and our staff remain committed to serving Albertans. If you have any questions or concerns about this change, please do not hesitate to contact my office, otherwise Assistant Deputy Ministers and their staff will be in touch as part of their regular business with your organization.

Thank you for your ongoing commitment and partnership.

Darlene Bouwsema Deputy Minister Children’s Services

Indigenous Thought Leader Symposium

Update September 2017

ALIGN has been busy  coordinating an Indigenous Thought Leader Symposium that will be held for Children and Family Serving organizations Leadership on October 23, 2017 at the Fantasyland Hotel in Edmonton. The day will highlight Alberta Indigenous Thought leaders and Knowledge Keepers and how to move knowledge into policy and service delivery. The Indigenous Thought Leader Symposium is intended to enhance indigenous innovations and relationships in child intervention service delivery. Starting in Ceremony, selected Elders, advisors, and service providers will share Indigenous teachings and current practices in work with Indigenous children, families, and individuals. The presentations will showcase specific culturally-based approaches to practice and ceremony with indigenous service users. The day will include teachings from highly respected elders and knowledge keepers in Alberta. Various Alberta-based programs providing culturally appropriate and effective services will be highlighted. The outcome will be that participants will have an opportunity to explore how they can utilize the guidelines and principles in policy development and service delivery. This full day event will be held in ceremony and highlight cultural practices.

 

ALIGN Executive Director Report – September 2017

Thank-you to all of you who attended our AGM in Red Deer on September 29th. It looks like our timing with the weather was right! For those of you who weren’t able to attend – please see the following updates and for those of you who were there, you’ll see I’ve included some recent sector updates and training links not yet available at the AGM.  If you have any questions about these activities or anything else we do at ALIGN please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Rhonda Barraclough
rhondab@alignab.ca
780 233-5459

ALIGN Executive Director Report – September 2017

This is new info we just received! Children’s Services has officially announced that they have identified three Children’s Services-specific divisions and the Assistant Deputy Ministers (ADMs) Read More

ALIGN has had a very busy spring and fall for 2017.  The Child Intervention Panel began in February 2017 and has been a challenge to stay on top of.  ALIGN has made two presentation to the panel and has been a resource for the panel organizers to get other speakers that fit certain categories. We have also encouraged agencies to submit to the panel recommendations as per the guidelines outlined or just their thoughts in particular areas. All panel deliberations can be heard on the Child Intervention Panel Website, and all submissions made by members can be seen on our ALIGN Website.

Nicole McFadyen (Child Intervention)and  Cathy Mitchell (Occupational Health and Safety, ALIGN Journal and a Mental Health Projects) have settled nicely into their positions and are working well in their areas of interest.  I have recently contracted with a communications specialist to help us with some of our messages, fact sheets, and reports in an effort to get a consistent look and feel to our work.

The ALIGN Board has worked hard on the Strategic Plan and the revisions of the bylaws and board policies. We will be moving forward on the planned direction and approving these activities.

In January 2018, we will be holding our 10th Annual Conference and a 50-year celebration for ALIGN.  We will go down memory lane a bit and have a great celebration. Registration opening later this week.

As government has moved from the Ministry of Humans Services transitioning to 2 Ministries we have had to develop new relationships and understandings of who does what.  There is now the Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS) and the second is the Ministry of Children Services (MCS).  All child intervention services and the indigenous engagement were moved to the Ministry of Children Services.  The Ministry of Community and Social Services still holds disability services, services for family violence among other service areas and they jointly are responsible for contracting.  ALIGN has met with the Ministers and Deputy Ministers for both Ministries.  Disabilities services also have a new ADM – John Stinson and I will be meeting with him later in October.  In Children Services, the ADM for Child intervention has been Mark Hattori that will change in October to Rae Ann Lajeunesse.  Mark will have a new portfolio.  We have asked to meet with Rae Ann and Mark.

For Child Intervention Services, Jon Reeves and Russ Pickford were appointed as Directors of Child Intervention.  Their role is to align all child intervention services provincially and to get more consistency in how services are provided and received across the province.  Jon serves the area from Leduc south and Russ from Edmonton north.

Procurement, contracting and contracts continue to be a bit of a ambiguous.  We have met with the DM and Minister regarding the need to have contracts move forward.  We were told that in reality little will move until the Child Intervention Panel concludes and makes recommendations.  We continue to advocate that parts of the system still can be procured, or negotiated.
See P.A.T. Final Reports August 2017 and ALIGN updates.

Bill 17 – Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act

Register Now!
ALIGN Presents Bill 17 Presentations – Register Now!

Bill 17 Presentation St. Albert October 5, 2017
Bill 17 Presentation Lethbridge October 20, 2017
Bill 17 Presentation Calgary October 31, 2017
Bill 17 Presentation Red Deer November 2, 2017

Preliminary-Review-of-Bill-17 (Neuman Thompson September 2017)
On May 24, 2017, the provincial government tabled Bill 17, titled the Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act. Bill 17 includes a number of significant reforms to two of the most important workplace-related laws in Alberta, being the Alberta Employment Standards Code (the “ESC”), and the Labour Relations Code (the “LRC”). The following is meant to provide a summary of some of the most noteworthy reforms that have been tabled as part of this Bill…

Alberta Government –  Bill 17: The Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act,  changes will come into effect on January 1, 2018.

Alberta Employer Advisor Bill 17 – Proposed Changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards Code

Cathy Mitchell and Nicole McFadyen – Updates June 2017- September 2017

Submission Being Accept Now!
Leadership Bursary

We are excited to announce that we can once again offer agency and individual leadership bursaries.  We will not be able to fund academic 2-year bursaries but agency can apply for up to $5,000.00 and individual leaders/supervisors can apply for training, workshops, etc up to $5,000.00.  This is only for the remainder of this fiscal year.

We are now accepting submissions for the spring ALIGN Journal. Our fall Journal will be published and available this month

Mental Health First Aid Grant (MHFA):
Both ALIGN and the AFPA have had the Mental Health First Aid grants extended till March 2018 as there are still funds available. The planning committee met in June 6, 2017 to look at our learning’s from last year and begin planning for 2017-2018 year. We have made arrangements to have Kevin Campbell provide two full days of training to caregivers on the importance of “Family Finding” for the children in their care. One day will occur in Edmonton January 24th and Calgary January 23th. The committee has decided to charge a minimal fee to attend and subsidize child care this year.

A memo was sent out reminding agencies that this funding is only available till the end of March 2018 and to utilize the funds if they have staff that needs the training.

Submissions Being Accept Now!
ALIGN Research Journal:

The 2017 Fall ALIGN Journal is currently with the desk top publisher and will hopefully be on line by the end of September. A focused call for contributions is underway so that we can have an edition for the spring 2018

Register Now!
Health and Safety in the Child and Family Services Sector:

ALIGN continues to be a partner on the research team of the Healthy Workplaces for Helping Professions Project. Join us for the Healthy Workplace Conference Edmonton October 13, 2017  Graham Lowe author of “Creating Healthy Organizations” will be the key note speaker. A second voluntary survey is currently being completed by human services staff to allow for a comparison with the findings of the first survey results of 2 years ago.  The results of this research, surveys and training will be presented at the fall conference.

We met with a representative for the Ministry of Labor in the Partnership Unit in the spring who recommended ALIGN explore the possibility of a collaborative relationship with the Alberta Association for Safety Partnerships(AASP) as a Certifying Partner. Conversations with the ED of the AASP have occurred and the plan is to apply jointly for grant funding from the Ministry of Labor to provide interested agencies with a series of training sessions (referred to as “The Roadmap to COR”) to obtain a Certificate of Recognition. Concurrently we will meet with agencies who have successfully obtained their COR and see what we can learn from them to pass on to other agencies.

We have also begun researching information on the National Standard of Canada on Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace.  We think there is other work that can be done and agencies can benefit from that is not to the extreme of COR yet may help with WCB rates.  That will be developed over the next 6 months.

Opioid Strategy:
ALIGN has continued to sit on a working group with the Children’s Services Opioid strategy as it pertains to all caregivers (agency and provincial). Information sheets and a training manual have been developed and is currently being reviewed by ministry staff. Once approved, this information will be provided to all agencies and caregivers.

Child Intervention Practice Framework (CIPF):
Child Intervention Practice committee is presently reviewing how to create consistencies and best practice provincially through the below initiatives. This committee consists of Regional managers. ALIGN and the AFPA.
Also See Child Intervention Review Panel

Collaborative Service Delivery (CSD):
Recently through many different discussions it has become clear that there is some confusion among organizations regarding the understanding of the term Collaborative Services Delivery (CSD).  CSD is intended to be an approach in delivering services to Alberta Children and Families under the umbrella of the Child Intervention Practice Framework (CIPF). This approach is being achieved but limited to initiatives such as; the Foundation of Caregiver Support, CSD lead sites, Family Finding and Signs of Safety. Collaborative Service Delivery Leads Table are meeting to discuss future direction of the table.

Foundation of Caregiver Support (FCS):
The Committee is in the process of reviewing the recently released Review of literature with the focus on Aboriginal Peoples and Communities – Trauma, Child Development, Healing and Resilience. The expectation is that organizations in Alberta serving child, youth and families must be Trauma Informed along with understanding Child Brain Development and stress. This is the foundational work for the 101 training that will come out this upcoming year.

The definition of Trauma Informed Care has 4 common elements; Trauma Awareness, Emphasis on Safety, Rebuild Control for person served and the approach is Strength Based. There are many ways for Organizations and their programs to make sure they are meeting these common elements in all the work they do.

Provincial Trauma Training Group
Presently, there is a small Provincial Trauma training working group-Sheldon Kennedy Advocacy Care Centre, ALIGN, Palix Foundation and Children Services are working on sharing approaches for knowledge immobilization and how to best support embedding it into practice across the Province.  There is an environmental scan of what types of Trauma Informed Training   are currently happening across sectors, and ministries in Alberta with hopes to develop a training navigation resource.

Save The Date!
Family Finding:

Children Services will be bringing Kevin Campbell the Family Finding trainer across the province in 2018, to provide a 4 day boot-camps again and mentoring to help build provincial capacity. We are currently discussing how to bring youth and lifelong networks to Alberta with Kevin. Kevin will also be facilitating 2 workshops at the ALIGN annual conference in January and  will also be be providing 2 – 1-day workshops for Caregivers in Edmonton January 24th and Calgary January 23th.  Family Finding is an excellent approach to bringing Trauma Informed knowledge into practice, aligning with the Signs of Safety and building resiliency in children through building lifelong networks.

Signs of Safety Working Group:
Signs of Safety working group.  Children Services has implemented Signs of Safety 2-day Provincial Delegation training. The working group is looking at how to implement a plan that insures all current CS staff also receive the 2-day Provincial training, whether or not they have had previous training in the past. This is to ensure everyone has received the same provincial specific training.  A 1-day training has been developed for agency partners and caregivers. The committee is in the process of developing a plan to offer the training provincially

Early Intervention – Prevention and Early Intervention Framework:
ALIGN has recently had discussions with the Ministry about agency input in to the refresh of the Prevention and Early Intervention Prevention Framework.

ALIGN Indigenous Advisory Group:
The ALIGN Indigenous Advisory Group reconvened in the Fall of 2016 in order to gain some guidance in planning for the upcoming year. Some of the current recommendations that we are working on are:

  • It was suggested that we convene a circle of government decision makers and others to share what is being done in the research and community sectors.
  • To bring together a group who has a strong understanding of Trauma and Inter-Generational Trauma to help guide the next step process.
  • A lot of Agencies have found ways that work for families and we should help highlight these approaches.

Register Now!

Indigenous Thought Leader Symposium
ALIGN has been busy  coordinating an Indigenous Thought Leader Symposium  that will be held for Children and Family Serving organizations Leadership on October 23, 2017 at the Fantasyland Hotel in Edmonton. The day will highlight Alberta Indigenous Thought leaders and Knowledge Keepers and how to move knowledge into policy and service delivery. The Indigenous Thought Leader Symposium is intended to enhance indigenous innovations and relationships in child intervention service delivery. Starting in Ceremony, selected Elders, advisors, and service providers will share Indigenous teachings and current practices in work with Indigenous children, families, and individuals. The presentations will showcase specific culturally-based approaches to practice and ceremony with indigenous service users. The day will include teachings from highly respected elders and knowledge keepers in Alberta. Various Alberta-based programs providing culturally appropriate and effective services will be highlighted. The outcome will be that participants will have an opportunity to explore how they can utilize the guidelines and principles in policy development and service delivery. This full day event will be held in ceremony and highlight cultural practices.

Child Intervention Practice Committee:
ALIGN sits at the CI Practice committee which is presently reviewing how to create consistencies and best practice around Cultural planning.

Elder Capacity Pilot
ALIGN sponsored 3 Elders to attend an Elder Capacity Building pilot and hosted 20 participants at a Cultural Solutions 201 session April 2017 through a grant from Children Services and is in continue discussions to help further the knowledge and practice capacity in these areas. The Purpose of the Elder Capacity Building Pilot is to build elders capacity in urban and rural First Nation settings, who are working with children and families who are at risk of being involved in the Child Intervention system, either through the Ministry of Child and Families or through contracted agencies in Alberta.

Youth in Care Mentoring (YIC) and Alberta Mentoring Partnership (AMP)
A three-year commitment has been made to the agencies that are piloting Youth in Care Mentoring.  We are currently working on documenting a service delivery model.  There has been an updated literature review completed and the pilots are working with the advisory group to look at consist parts of the delivery and what it takes to offer this program area

Child Welfare League of Canada (CWLC)
ALIGN continues to sit on the CWLC Board.  The most recent activity is the National Forum on infant, child mental health in Calgary the first week of October.

Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD)
ALIGN has been working with the regional directors and agencies to get some consistency in services delivery and contracting.  Recently the minimum wage increases have been of concern.  I believe the government will be making announcements shortly on how to help with this shortfall.  FSCD children being in group care is also an area we are exploring to ensure that those children get the right services and the agencies are clear about the mandate with FSCD children and how to work with their families.

 

CCAA New online evidence-based curriculum ADVANCED PRACTICE IN FORENSIC INTERVIEWING OF CHILDREN

The 15 modules of the course are designed for completion within a maximum time frame of ONE calendar year from your initial registration.  Should it be necessary to extend your study time in the course beyond 12 months, the Centre for Investigative Interviewing is obliged to charge an additional tuition fee of approximately $200 (yearly licensing fee).

  1. Establishing what constitutes ‘best practice’ guidelines
  2. Defining the various questions
  3. Understanding memory and language development
  4. Choosing the most effective open-ended questions
  5. Putting the right questions into practice
  6. Introducing the topic of concern and eliciting a disclosure
  7. Introducing the interview protocol
  8. Assessing your progress
  9. Repeated events
  10. Evidentiary requirements
  11. The “whole” story approach to investigating and interviewing
  12. Cross-cultural issues
  13. Interviewing witnesses with complex communication support needs
  14. Note taking
  15. Putting it all together

New From Alberta Family Wellness Initiative Aug/Sept 2017

The Alberta Family Wellness Initiative (AFWI) provides resources and symposia to bring key stakeholders together to help inform policy and practice in Alberta, so that they can create a common framework of understanding. The AFWI routinely scans academic journals for research articles related to its mission and vision.

Alberta Family Wellness Initiative Research Update August 2017
This packed with great research!

Brain Story Certification
Master Brain Story science fundamentals in a free, online course developed by the Alberta Family Wellness Initiative (AFWI) and endorsed by an expert Curriculum Committee. Over 5,500 students have already signed up: 3,800 students from Alberta, with the rest coming from 32 countries around the world. Brain Story Certification is eligible for accreditation with a number of professional bodies. If you haven’t yet enrolled, join your colleagues by registering now.

How We Talk About FASD: Mapping The Gaps In Our Discussions
In a new, in-depth study, the FrameWorks Institute “maps the gaps” that exist for individuals and agencies seeking to communicate with Manitobans about Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD). The study notes the challenges for communication on FASD, given deeply held beliefs about associated topics including substance use, motherhood, responsibility and morality. FrameWorks also points out that effective discussion requires a clear picture of the core concepts that the public must understand in order to support the initiatives that evidence suggests will create positive change. “Seeing the Spectrum” is highly recommended reading for AFWI followers who recognize the importance of FASD research as it fits in the larger world of brain development, mental health and addiction.

Invest in women’s shelters to solve women’s homelessness Sept 7, 2017

The Alberta Council of Women’s Shelters together with sixteen of their members have published a report: A Safe Path Home, based on their collaborative work over the last two years. The report highlights the work of second-stage women’s shelters in Alberta and provides practical recommendations that government can implement to support women and children who have become homeless due to domestic abuse.

AFPA 2017 Aboriginal Awareness Weekend Sept. 15 – 17, 2017

Sept. 15 – 17, 2017 Now taking registrations for those who wish to reserve their spot at this year’s event.

The Procurement Advisory Table (PAT) Final Report to the Ministers of Community and Social Services and Children’s Services August 2017

Update September 2017

Procurement, contracting and contracts continue to be a bit of a ambiguous.  We have met with the DM and Minister regarding the need to have contracts move forward.  We were told that in reality little will move until the Child Intervention Panel concludes and makes recommendations.  We continue to advocate that parts of the system still can be procured, or negotiated.

Procurement Advisory Table – Final Report August 2017

The Procurement Advisory Table (PAT) provided its Final Report to the Ministers of Community and Social Services and Children’s Services. The report includes recommendations for the departments to consider for designing and implementing future contracting approaches.

Arrangements are underway to schedule a meeting involving ALIGN (Rhonda Barraclough) ECVO (Russ Dahms)  ACDS (Andrea Hesse) and Deputy Ministers for both Ministry of Children’s Services and Community and Support Services Shannon Marchand and Darlene Bouwsema the second week of September to determine a course of action going forward considering changes that have occurred since the report was tabled in December.

Related

Response from Minister Sabir to PAT Co-Chair,  Russ Dahms

Terms of Reference

Membership List

Previous PAT Updates

See ALIGN Directory of Contracting News

 

 

A “Sneak Peak” of AMP New Indigenous Mentoring Resources

SNEAK PEAK: Resources for Mentoring Refugee, Immigrant & Newcomer Children and Youth

To access the resource one more step is required. Please fill in your contact information to assist in the role-out and evaluation of our new resource. AMP will not share your information, it is only for internal tracking purposes. In the next few months they will send you a brief survey asking for feedback.


Notice to Members  from Michael Jan August 1, 2017

AMP partners work to expand and enhance quality youth mentoring programs for young adults across Alberta.  Here is an exclusive opportunity for a “Sneak Peak” of the new Indigenous Mentoring resources. You might use different language or program labels other than mentoring, but the principles and considerations outlined in the document are valuable for any program that supports Indigenous or non-Indigenous relationships. Share your feedback with Michael Janz michael.janz@albertamentors.ca about how this can be further mobilized into the community.

While ALIGN is a valued “Builder Partner” of the AMP (and Rhonda Barraclough is a member of the Leadership Team), each individual agency should be listed as a AMP Partner! If you have not done so already, please take a moment and fill out our “Partner contact form” so AMP can promote your work and your agency and you can take advantage of our volunteer recruitment capacity! Don’t worry, there is no charge because we are a no-fee partnership

Homeless Hub New Report – Child Welfare and Youth Homelessness in Canada: A Proposal for Action

Excerpt 0 Almost sixty percent (57.8%) of homeless youth in Canada report involvement with the child welfare system at some point in their lives. In comparison, among the general population in Canada, roughly 0.3% of youth have child welfare involvement. This suggests that youth experiencing homelessness are 193 times more likely than youth in the general population to report involvement with the child welfare system…

Alberta Government News Release Sole-source Service Contracts Disclosed for Q1

Sole-source Service Contracts Disclosed for Q1
The Government of Alberta’s online database has been updated with service contracts awarded outside a formal competition process during the last fiscal quarter.The Sole-source Service Contract Database has been updated with an additional 769 contracts with start dates on or before June 30, 2017. Of these, 561 provide direct social supports and 208 support government business. The total value of all 769 contracts is approximately $1.9 billion.The online database will continue to be updated on a quarterly basis in support of procurement accountability across the Government of Alberta

New Research: Topics Include FASD, Trauma, Abuse and Child Welfare July 2017

Chronicle Of Social Change
Major Breakthrough on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome has Huge Implications for Child Welfare System July 28, 2017
Researchers announced this month that two substances have shown to be effective in rolling back some of the effects of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs), a slate of conditions conferred to babies born to mothers who drink during pregnancy.

States Explore Trauma Screening in the Child Welfare System July 28, 2017
“There is definitely a shift towards the recognition that it’s a good thing to do and many systems want to do it, but I think there’s still some concrete challenges to actually putting it into place universally that some states are really struggling with,” Lang said. In a paper published last month, Lang and his colleagues looked at five statewide and tribal initiatives that started the process of creating pilot projects screening for trauma in the child welfare system…

American Academy of Pediatrics
Report Tags Oral and Dental Problems That May Signal Child Abuse and Neglect July 31, 2017
A report from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry in the August 2017 Pediatrics (published online July 31) aims to help identify problems involving a child’s teeth, gums and mouth that may be signs of physical or sexual abuse and neglect. .

Annie E. Casey Foundation
The Road to Adulthood Aligning Child Welfare Practice With Adolescent Brain Development July 22, 2017
With knowledge of how the adolescent brain matures, adults can do more to ensure that the road leaving foster care will take young people to self-sufficiency and successful adulthood. And this guide tells how.

Review Panel Updates July 2017

NEW

Government responds to OCYA reports Minister Sarah Hoffman issued the following statement, on behalf of Children’s Services Minister Danielle Larivee, in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Reviews released today: July 18, 2017

Alberta’s child-welfare system failed First Nations youth: report Globe and Mail July 19, 2017

Alberta government ‘not going to wait’ for feds to close First Nations child welfare gap July 20, 2017

Child advocate ‘concerned’ about government inaction on death recommendations Edmonton Journal July 19, 2017

Alberta’s child-welfare system failed First Nations youth: report Globe and Mail July 19, 2017

 

RECENTLY POSTED

Child Intervention Practices in Alberta Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention June 5 2017

ALIGN Partners in Child Intervention Child Intervention Panel Submission June 30, 2017

ALIGN:  Presentation to Child Intervention Review Panel (ppt) June 15, 2017

ALIGN Calgary Chapter Submission 1 – Working Relationships and Collaboration
ALIGN Calgary Chapter Submission 2 – The Practice of Child Intervention
ALIGN Calgary Chapter Submission 3 – Funding Community Agency Services A Sector in Crisis

 Inter-Agency Foster Care Committee (IFCC) Submission to Review Panel June 29 2017

Child and Youth Care Association of Alberta (CYCAA) Submission to Child Intervention Panel June 2017

VIEW ALL UPDATES & SUBMISSIONS HERE

PolicyWise New Research

A secondary data analysis of emerging stigma from the study, What Albertans Know about FASD

Grant Primary Investigator: Dr. Peter Choate, Mount Royal University

Overview: This FASD data set has been reviewed for its utility in relation to a secondary data analysis focusing on the ways in which public attitudes, stigma, prevention, and intervention intersect. In assessing the general knowledge of FASD through this survey, the data that was available for review highlighted particular intersections for stigma, and potential new avenues for prevention initiatives involving family, community, and bystanders. An early review of the data suggests that there are several perceptions and beliefs that have not been capitalized upon for prevention strategies…

Primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention of prenatal alcohol exposure and effects

Grant Primary Investigator: Dr. James Sanders, University of Lethbridge

Overview: Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) is a lifelong condition caused by prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) that results in a range of disabilities. Preventing FASD can be done by preventing alcohol-exposed pregnancies or reducing the level of PAE during pregnancy. In addition, the lifelong effects of PAE can be mitigated through early intervention. T

 

Fostering Change: A Call For Personal Experiences In Care

Want to share your story and help Youth in Care Canada increase awareness about the experience of being in care? Youth in Care Canada is hosting Fostering Change: A Night In Support of Youth In Care at 5:00 pm on Sunday, August 20th at the Rideau Carleton Raceway in Ottawa, Ontario, and they’d love for you to share your personal experiences and stories with their guests! They’ll be sending out ticket information closer to the date.

They’re looking to feature the stories of youths in/from care and the professionals who work in the Canadian child welfare system at their event through a featurette in the complementary race program given to all guests, and a video in our PowerPoint that will be shown on TVs across the entire Rideau Carleton Raceway complex throughout the night. This is a wonderful way to help people learn more about the experience of being in care and the benefits of supporting youths while in care and after they exit the care system!

They’re accepting both written submissions to include in the complementary race program and video submissions of your story to include as part of promotional emails and social media posts leading up to the event, and screen throughout the evening at Fostering Change.

Written Submission Guidelines:

  • Submissions from youth in and alumni from care should center around your personal experience as a youth in care and include a theme of growth and moving toward change for the future.
  • Submissions from professionals who work with youth in care should center around your personal experience working with youth in care and the importance of providing support.
    • Some prompts to tell your story:
  • Submissions should be no longer than 400 words
  • We’d also love if you included a picture, but if you’re not comfortable with that, we understand!

Video Submission Guidelines:

  • Submissions from youth in and alumni from care should center around your personal experience as a youth in care and include a theme of growth and moving toward change for the future
    Submissions from professionals who work with youth in care should center around your personal experience working with youth in care and the importance of providing support
  • Submissions should range from 2 to 5 minutes long
  • If you’re located in the Ottawa area, we can film your story for you! Contact allysa@youthincare.ca to coordinate a filming date!

Some prompts to help you tell your story …

Youth in/alumni from care:

  • What has being in care meant to you?
  • What were the key things that got you through your care experience?
  • What would you like others to take away from your experience in care?

Professionals/organizations:

  • Why is supporting youth in care meaningful to you?
  • Why is the work you do to support youth in care important?
  • What would you like others to take away from your experience working with youth in care?

Please submit personal stories, videos, and pictures by August 1st, 2017. Submissions can be emailed to allysa@youthincare.ca.

Signs of Safety Suggest Reading New Book, Strengths-Based Child Protection: Firm, Fair, and Friendly

A new book, Strengths-Based Child Protection: Firm, Fair, and Friendly by Carolyn Oliver has recently been released which we are very happy to recommend. Forward by Andrew Turnell: Signs of Safety

To make any sense of strengths-based thinking and practice in child protection you have to address the fundamental questions:

  • How can the practitioner use their authority skilfully and still work collaboratively with parents?
  • How can the practitioner bring rigorous professional knowledge about harm and danger and at the same time approach parents and extended family as people who bring strengths, resources, and solutions?

The book tackles these issues head on and frames answers based in practice and in language that will resonate with child protection professionals everywhere. This book significantly extends our professional thinking about how to do child protection and how to research and build theory together with practitioners. Anyone who wants to do child protection practice more rigorously and more compassionately should read this book.

The author, Carolyn Oliver, is an adjunct professor in the School of Social Work at the University of British Columbia as well as the Strategic Policy Advisor for Canada’s largest urban Aboriginal child protection agency.

The Alberta Government Investing in 17 Homeless Shelters Across the Province

Alberta Government News Release June 29, 2107
The funding will help ensure homeless shelters in Calgary, Edmonton, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie, Lethbridge, Lloydminster and Red Deer continue to be safe, secure and healthy places for Albertans to stay when they have nowhere else to go. The majority of the money will be used for routine maintenance and security upgrades, such as security lighting, roof repair and flooring replacements…

CYDL Releases New Reports From the Longitudinal Study Experiences of Alberta Children and Youth Over Time, 2005-06 to 2010-11.

Four new reports have been released from the CYDL’s longitudinal study, Experiences of Alberta Children and Youth Over Time, 2005-06 to 2010-11. This longitudinal, cross-ministry study is an analysis of over two million Albertans and their use of government services over the span of six years.

Findings like those shown in the infographic above can be found in four new reports:

The longitudinal study is ground-breaking in it’s multi-year, cumulative approach to the service use of Albertan children and youth as studying experiences over several years of development adds a valuable level of richness.

All current deliverables from this project can be accessed here.

Alberta Government Providing $1.7 million for Maintenance Upgrades to Facilities Across the Province June 7, 2017

Alberta Government News Release June 7, 2017

The Alberta government is providing $1.7 million for maintenance upgrades to facilities across the province and to improve homelessness supports in Edmonton

Alberta Care Worker Safety Focused Inspection Program June 8 and September 30, 2017.

Dear Members,

Alberta Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) announced a Care Worker Safety Focused Inspection Program which will take place between June 8 and September 30, 2017.

The program’s goal is to ensure workers and employers in the sector are aware of their rights and responsibilities to help create healthy and safe workplaces.  View the Care Worker Stakeholder Presentation 2017 ppt, that OHS presented to us which is quite informative and explains what they are going to be doing, the rationale and the how.

If you have any questions please contact Cathy Mitchell.

contractor with ALIGN at cathym@alignab.ca. Thank you.

Province finds bed for teen with mental health issues after judge slams province Calgary Herald June 5, 2017

Just days after a youth court judge railed against the province for a dearth of secure facilities for at-risk teens, a bed has been found for an accused young offender.

A representative for the director of child welfare appeared in youth court Monday to apply for a five-day placement for the 14-year-old in a secure facility.

Judge Steve Lipton summoned members of the media to his courtroom last Thursday so he could express his frustration at the lack of beds for children with severe addiction and mental health issues…

Jailing of Indigenous sex-assault victim sparks review of Alberta’s justice system Globe and Mail June 6, 2017

She was jailed for five days to ensure she would testify against the man accused of kidnapping, stabbing and sexually assaulting her. She was driven to court in the same van as her assailant at least twice. Even when she asked to be released to her mother’s home, a judge said no. And she testified in leg shackles, which she wore for at least two full days in court….

Minister Ganley Addresses Treatment of a Victim of Crime

Alberta Government News Release June 5, 2017

Kathleen Ganley, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General, has issued the following statement in response to the way “Angela Cardinal” was treated:

“It is clear our justice system failed this Albertan. She was a young woman and the victim of a horrific crime. The way she was treated in the system is absolutely unacceptable.

“When I was made aware of this situation, I was shocked, angry and heartbroken. It is obvious we failed her at every level and her story is a crucial reminder that we must do better. In my opinion, there were obvious mistakes and poor decisions made in this case…

New Commission to Guide Opioid Emergency Response

Alberta Government Release May 31, 2017 The province has established a dedicated emergency commission to help ramp up Alberta’s ability to respond to the opioid crisis.

The province has established a dedicated emergency commission to help ramp up Alberta’s ability to respond to the opioid crisis. The Minister’s Opioid Emergency Response Commission was created with a new regulation under the Public Health Act. The commission’s mandate is to implement urgent coordinated actions to address this public health crisis…

See Related News and Updates

Government of Alberta Establishes a Family Information Liaison for missing and Murdered Indigenous Women

Alberta Government  News Release May 19, 2017 Helping families of missing and murdered Indigenous women
Families of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls now have an advocate to help them find information and resources related to their loved ones. As part of its commitment to the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, the Government of Alberta has established a Family Information Liaison Unit with approximately $1.5 million in funding from the federal government…

4th Edition of the Signs of Safety Briefing Paper Released May 2017

The Signs of Safety is a constantly evolving practitioner’s model and because of this, written material cannot usually keep up with the latest developments. The Signs of Safety Briefing Paper has been continually updated to provide the most up to date overview of the Signs of Safety as it continues to evolve. This fourth edition of the Signs of Safety Briefing Paper offers a comprehensive overview of the Signs of Safety approach and underpinning theory, as well as detailing the research and implementation science that supports it.

Signs of Safety IT System Breakthrough Day for the Signs of Safety Approach.

Signs of Safety IT System April 24, 2017 was a breakthrough day for the Signs of Safety approach.
On that day in Islington London, together with Servelec HSC, the first fully specified Signs of Safety information management system was launched.

The system’s forms embed all the of the Signs of Safety practice elements, from intake through to closure, and include all the assessment and planning methods. Comprehensive Signs of Safety practice guidance is also embedded throughout the system. Since the Servelec system is built in the English context, the system is also fully compliant with English legislative and statutory returns requirements…

With the launch of the Signs of Safety IT system, Signs of Safety consultants can now offer any child protection organization the forms, experience and IT partners that are needed to implement a Signs of Safety IT system for their agency. This will enable the agency to create the recording environment where workers are supported to practice using the Signs of Safety approach, and deliver an IT system that workers will want to use because it will help them carry out their direct work with families…

See More Signs of Safety News and Resources

Alberta Social Workers to Help Families of Missing, Murdered Indigenous Females

Alberta Social Workers to Help Families of Missing, Murdered Indigenous Females May 19, 2017 John Cotter The Canadian Press
EDMONTON – Alberta has established a team of four social workers to help families of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls. The three women and one man are to assist relatives in getting information about their loved ones from police, courts, the government and fatality inquiries. Don Langford, executive director of the Metis Child and Family Services Society, said the social workers will be welcomed by indigenous people who believe their pain and concerns are being ignored.

ALIGN to Present at Child Intervention Review Panel. Member Submissions & Presentations Encouraged

May 10, 2017
Dear ALIGN Members,

Over the next few months we have an incredible opportunity to ensure that The Child Intervention Panel (currently tasked with reviewing and revising the current child welfare system in Alberta) are informed, encouraged, educated and influenced by agencies, educators and the families who receive service. ALIGN is preparing to make a presentation to the panel regarding the work that sector agencies do and the need for resourcing the valuable information agencies can contribute.  We expect that they will be interested in hearing from various sectors such as group care, kinship and foster care.

The Panel members currently have a basic knowledge regarding intergenerational trauma, the CORE story, child development, and the importance of early intervention among other areas of importance.  Over the next 2 months they have expressed interest in furthering their understanding and awareness in these and related areas. Your submissions and presentation will provide them further insights and assist them to better determine what they require additional information on.

It is likely that time lines for presentations will be very short; therefore, I would suggest that agencies collaborate if possible when making written submissions and include an offer to present if you feel it is appropriate.  Share your thoughts with the panel

A few recommendations:

I highly encourage you to listen to the live stream audio segments of the child intervention panel.  You can listen to them by going to Panel Meetings

  • If there a group of you doing the same or similar work and you feel that the panel needs to know about it, do a joint submission.
  • Don’t put too many issues into a submission. Try to keep it to one or two issues so that they can absorb the importance of your concern.  Make separate submissions for each topic area you want them to hear about.
  • Use the guideline on the website Share your thoughts with the panel
  • If there is research that backs up your point, attach it to the submission but don’t send books. Find relevant adequate article and send the link to them if you can.

ALIGN EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR REQUEST

If you are sending in a submission or presentations, please submit a copy to me at rhondab@alignab.ca  so we can include it on our ALIGN Review Panel Page  – this will assist members to avoid repetition.  The panel is only sitting to August 1, 2017 so don’t delay – if you want to say something now is the time!

Thank you, if you have any questions or want any advice on this please don’t hesitate to email or call me

 

Rhonda Barraclough
Executive Director ALIGN Association for Community Services
rhondab@alignab.ca 780 233.5459

 

For More Resources View  ALIGN Review Panel Page

Deadly New Drug Carfentanil Lands First Responders in Hospital

Traycee Biancamano on Linkedin
CEO at U.S. First Responders Association
U.S. First Responders Association

Dear Medics, Police, and Firefighters. Please share this with your colleagues. If you find drugs on a patient, be extremely careful when handling them. A new drug is in town called “carfentanil” which is so potent that it landed two first responders in the hospital from inhaling dust while closing a ziplock bag a patient had. Expect people who OD to take 10x more Narcan to start breathing again

Related

Global News –  What is carfentanil? Deadly street drug is causing mass overdoses in the US
The super powerful drug carfentanil was seized by the CBSA in Vancouver. It is 100 times more powerful than fentanyl. Catherine Urquhart has more.

 

Connecting Sexual Violence Survivors to Supports

Alberta Justice and Solicitor General (JSG) and its partners have developed a resource card that police services across the province can distribute to Albertans who report sexual violence…

First Nation Leader Joins Child Intervention Panel

Tyler White, CEO for Siksika Health Services, is joining the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention May 8, 2017
A past winner of the First Nations Health Manager’s Award of Excellence, White will help the panel identify ways to better support First Nations, Metis and Aboriginal families and communities, as well as strengthen the ways the government supports Indigenous children, youth and families..

View More Child Intervention Panel News and Updates

Suncor Energy Shares Aboriginal Awareness Web-Based Training Module

Suncor Energy has made its Aboriginal Awareness web-based training modules available to the public, to help to raise awareness about the history and experiences of Aboriginal peoples in Canada. Topics covered in the videos include Aboriginal identity, racism and misconceptions, the residential school legacy, and opportunities for Canadians. These short videos make a great discussion starter for any organization or group that is taking steps toward reconciliation.

ALIGN/AFPA – Mental Wellness for Children and Youth in Care: Support for the Caregiver Conference Edmonton January 25, 2017

The main theme of the Mental Wellness for Children and Youth in Care: Support for the Caregiver symposium was the mental wellness of children and youth in care, the use of psychotropic medications and how caregivers can become more knowledgeable in supporting these youths. Caregiver encompassed agency and department foster parents, kinship parents, adoptive parents, residential and group care staff. The theme of the day presented by culturally informed medical experts, is the mental wellness of children/youth in care and the use of psychotropic medications considering issues such as the child’s emotional, medical and cultural needs. Youth themselves and representatives from the Office of the Children’s Advocate presented. The day ended with a panel discussion. Presenters: Dr. Wanda Polzin; Clinical Director at CASA in Edmonton, AB Dr. Lana Potts; Family Physician Siksika Family Clinic and Jeffery Cheng and Sheena Stevens; CYS Mental Health Nurses.

Welcome & Introductions Mental Wellness for Children and Youth in Care: Support for the Caregiver Edmonton January 25, 2017

Office of the Child and Youth Advocate Randy Baker, Lee Bowers & Adreana Brochu OCYA Representatives & Youth

Panel Discussion

The Importance of Caring for the Care Giver Dr. Wanda Polzin, MA, RSW, EdD Clinical Director – CASA

Understanding Psychotropic Medications for Children in Care Jeffrey Cheng /Sheena Stevens Nurse Consultants – CASA

Who We Are First Nations People in Alberta Dr. Lana Potts Family Physician

Adolescent self-regulation FASD Study in Edmonton is Recruiting

UBC needs participants in Edmonton and Vancouver. The program runs over 12 weeks with a weekly one hour session on self-regulation. Participants must be diagnosed with FASD and be between ages of 11 – 17 and speak fluent English.

CUP New Course – Engaging High-Risk or At-Risk Youth

The Faculty of Extension is offering a new course.

Engaging High-Risk or At-Risk Youth

Many youths are labelled at-risk or high-risk by service providers, the school system, the criminal justice system, and society as a whole. Examine concepts of ‘at-risk/high-risk’ youth and its implications, the issues that create marginalization and stigmatization and the ways to minimize these; and how community agencies (e.g., government, non-profit) respectfully engage youth as an agent for change in, and a positive contributor to, the community through building a positive relationship with them. Understand the views, voices, and experiences of a select group of youths who will co-instruct this course with the principal instructor.

Class schedule: May 30 – June 22, 2017

Tue, Thu 5:00 PM – 06:30 PM

Human Service Worker Wellness and Safety Bulletin April 2017

ALIGN Association of Community Services knows our member agencies make employee safety and wellness a priority so here is a helpful  collection of research, tools and training that can support you in that effort.  At the bottom of this bulletin you will find direct links to the related ALIGN online directories where you can access additional resources.

2017 Compensation Guide for Foster and Kinship Caregivers

2017 Compensation Guide for Foster and Kinship Caregivers
Children’s Services has developed this financial information guide to provide caregivers and staff with an overview of financial responsibilities of Child and Family Services (CFS) or Delegated First Nations Agency (DFNA) and caregiver parents have when a child is placed in care. It explains the financial process to access funds for children in care.

 

Treaty 7 Caregiver Training Conference: Enhancing and Harnessing Cultural Competency

Treaty 7 Caregiver Training Conference: Enhancing and Harnessing Cultural Competency Calgary May 1 – 2, 2017
This year’s focus will be on “enhancing and harnessing cultural competency”. Through dialogue with Treaty Seven First Nation directors of children and family services, and in partnership with the Provincial Ministry of Human Services, they welcome you to participate in a journey of learning and integrating cultural applications in parenting First Nations children in care. Their sessions are compiled from leading Indigenous experts from bio-social, medical, traditional, spiritual, technological, psychological, academic and sociopolitical backgrounds. The participant will attain a diversified skill set to provide meaningful guardianship to First Nation children with 12 hours of available certification credits for our conference caregivers.

Government strategy on youth homelessness must focus on mental health needs, report says – YorkU

Government strategy on youth homelessness must focus on mental health needs, report says – YorkU Nation Talk April 7, 2017

TORONTO, April 6, 2017 – Governments must focus on the mental health challenges faced by young people in Canada in order to effectively address youth homelessness, says a policy brief released today by researchers and community groups.

The report by the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness, based at York University, and A Way Home Canada, calls on federal, provincial and territorial governments to implement youth homelessness strategies that recognize marginalized and homeless youth are at higher risk of mental health challenges, poor quality of life, and suicide. The first national study on youth homelessness found that 85 per cent of young Canadians who are homeless are experiencing a mental health crisis, 42 per cent reported at least one suicide attempt, and 35 per cent reported at least one drug overdose requiring hospitalization….

Alberta NDP Vow To Fix Child Welfare System With Spring Legislation Opposition MLA Questions ‘Ludicrous’ Review Panel Process

Alberta NDP Vow To Fix Child Welfare System With Spring Legislation Opposition MLA Questions ‘Ludicrous’ Review Panel Process Edmonton Sun March 30, 2017
The NDP government is prepared to introduce legislation this spring to begin making fixes to the child welfare system, Children Services Minister Danielle Larivee said Thursday.But as Alberta’s child intervention panel met in Calgary for the first time, opposition MLAs on the committee are expressing frustration around the process…

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel  Articles, News and Updates

NDP Vows Quick Action But Opposition Frustrated As Child Intervention Panel Meets In Calgary

NDP Vows Quick Action But Opposition Frustrated As Child Intervention Panel Meets In Calgary / Calgary Herald March 30, 2017
The NDP government is prepared to introduce legislation this spring to begin fixing the child welfare system, Children’s Services Minister Danielle Larivee said Thursday. But as Alberta’s ministerial child intervention panel met in Calgary for the first time, opposition MLAs on the committee are expressing frustration around the process.
The panel was created after revelations about the death of Serenity, who was in government care in 2014 when she died of a traumatic head injury suffered while living in a kinship care program with private guardians.

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel  Articles, News and Updates

Ministerial Child Review Panel Meeting Summary Feb/March 2017

.

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel  Articles, News and Updates

Federal Budget – March News, Updates and Reactions

Nation Talk
Federal budget’s new investment and cultural focus welcomed by Indigenous addictions and mental wellness advocate Nation Talk March 24, 2017
Chatham-Kent, ON (March 24, 2017) The national voice advocating for First Nations culturally-based addictions and mental health services is welcoming the new federal budget as a positive sign of Canada’s commitment to improve Indigenous health outcomes…

Toronto Metro
‘Nothing new’ for Indigenous child welfare in budget: Blackstock  David P. Ball Metro Mar 23 2017
First Nations child welfare is going under the microscope at an Edmonton event  Thursday, one day after the federal budget disappointed critics by offering “nothing new” towards an “unfathomable” epidemic of youth suicides and underfunded services, Canada’s leading advocate told Metro…

Mental Health Commission of Canada
Statement by Louise Bradley, President & CEO of the Mental Health Commission of Canada on Federal Budget 2017 March 22, 2017
On behalf of the Mental Health Commission of Canada, Louise Bradley, President and CEO made the following statement:“The Mental Health Commission of Canada applauds the Government of Canada for its new investments to address the critical underfunding of Canada’s mental health system….

Canadian Mental Health Association
Budget 2017: ‘A Great Start March 23, 2017
CMHA congratulates the Federal Government for demonstrating a strong commitment to mental health in Canada in its 2017 Budget. The Government’s significant investment in mental heath is a great start toward correcting the historical, woeful underfunding of mental health in this country. However, there is some way to go before mental health care is funded on par with physical health care, and in proportion to the burden of illness…

2017 Federal Budget Analysis March 23, 2017
See analysis for Early Learning and Child Care, Parental Leave, Indigenous Children, Youth Skills Training, Violence Prevention and Maintenance Payments and the Family Justice System

The Canadian Association of Social Workers (CASW
Budget 2017:  Delivering the Promise of a More Equitable Canada 
OTTAWA, ON – March 22, 2017 – The Canadian Association of Social Workers (CASW) has long advocated for accountable social investments that would deliver a coordinated national plan to reduce poverty in Canada, supporting our most vulnerable to live with dignity and respect.

With the gender-based, long-term, and coordinated investments such as those in child care, family leave, mental health, homecare, and affordable housing, Budget 2017 has built on its 2016 commitments to children and seniors, appearing to deliver social investments and the national leadership required to lead us towards a stronger and more equitable Canada…

Canada Charity Law
2017 Canadian Federal Budget – How will it affect the Canadian charitable sector? March 22, 2017 | By Mark Blumberg and Kate Robertson
Today, Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau introduced his second Federal Budget of the Liberal Government of Justin Trudeau. While there was support for a number of individual charities announced, also support for important areas requiring assistance like affordable housing or universities, there was limited initiatives in terms of the charity and non-profit sector as a whole.

Children First
Children First Canada’s Response to Federal Budget 2017 March 22, 2017
The federal budget tabled today includes important measures to benefit at-risk communities in Canada, such as repairing 50,000 social housing units and the removal of 18 long-term boil water advisories in First Nations Communities, which will help ensure children have a safe home and clean accessible drinking water. Support for the National Housing Strategy and the increase to the number of high-quality child care spaces available across the country are also welcome additions to ensuring safe housing for all and proper child care protections…

The Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness (CAEH) Calgary
CAEH Statement on Budget 2017 “An important and welcome step in the right direction” March 22, 2017
The Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness (CAEH) welcomed housing and homelessness investments announced today in the 2017 federal budget, but highlighted the urgency and scale of Canada’s housing and homelessness crisis…

CBC News Budget targets $3.4B for ‘critical’ needs of Indigenous communities March 22, 2017 Children’s welfare funding
But while the budget pledges to “further its relationship with Indigenous people” there is no new money for the First Nations child and family services program.Last year’s budget set aside $634.8 million over five years for that, but the Liberals have come under fire for being too slow to get money out the door to help children and families in need. Last year, a Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled Canada discriminates against First Nations children compared with what other children receive under provincial programs.

ALIGN Letter to The Honorable Joe Ceci Re RE: Contracted Sector for Children’s Services

On March 6, 2017 ALIGN Executive Director sent a letter to the Honorable Joe Ceci Minister of Finance & President of the Alberta Treasury Board regarding contracted sector.

Contracted Sector for Children’s Services Letter March 6, 2017

Excerpt 1
While FCSS funding has been substantially increased and that certainly helps, the funding for the agencies that provide services to the more vulnerable and those at risk of having their children enter care have not. These contracts have been stagnant for about 2 years or longer. We had been working with the Ministry of Human Services to find a way forward in the procurement activities to get to a better funding model and closer to true costs…

Excerpt 2
It is our request that you and the Ministers of Community and Social Services and Children’s Services consider a small injection of funds to at least bolster wages. There are many other areas like operating costs for example that need to be considered as well but at this moment the wages are paramount….

Budget Updates Danielle Larivee Minister Children’s Services March 16, 2017

Children’s Services Non-Voting Operational Expense Budget 2017

All children and families in Alberta deserve opportunities to thrive within strong, supportive communities. Our government created a new, standalone Children’s Services ministry so that we can focus on improving the supports we provide for young people and their families. Today I am thrilled to share details on commitments that our government is able to make to Children’s Services in Budget 2017.

All children and families in Alberta deserve opportunities to thrive within strong, supportive communities. Our government created a new, standalone Children’s Services ministry so that we can focus on improving the supports we provide for young people and their families. Today I am thrilled to share details on commitments that our government is able to make to Children’s Services in Budget 2017.

Budget 2017 is focused on strengthening the things that matter most to Albertans, such as creating and supporting jobs, making life more affordable for families and protecting public services.

As Alberta’s population continues to grow, the economic downturn puts additional pressure on the social services sector. Despite this, Budget 2017 makes an additional investment of $86 million in Children’s Services to:

  • provide stable funding to maintain the programs and services that support at‑risk children and youth;
  • focus on protecting children;
  • and support working in partnership with communities and Indigenous partners to build relationships and improve outcomes for all children.

This year, our ministry will invest almost $1.4 billion to keep children healthy and safe, support parents with child care and build stronger families and communities by maintaining the quality of programs and services.Children’s Services Non-Voting Operational Expense Budget 2017

Budget 2017 protects previous investments and accommodates caseload growth including an additional:

  • $32.5 million for child intervention for total funding of $763 million. This includes $5 million for about 60 new positions (FTEs);
  • $14.3 million for child care for total funding of $321 million. This includes supports for a growing number of child care programs to become accredited and to recruit and maintain qualified staff.
  • $10.6 million for early intervention services for children and youth for total funding of $103 million so that we can continue to invest in enhanced early childhood development and parenting resources in communities to help families support their child’s optimal health and development.
  • And an additional $27 million for total funding of $174 million for the Alberta Child Benefit, which provides direct financial assistance to all lower income families with income below $41,220 per year

While we have taken action and made significant investments in the future of our province, there is always more that can be done. I remain committed to working with all of you to address the root causes of many of the issues affecting the safety and well‑being of children, including poverty, addiction, mental health concerns, and family violence.

Some of you may be interested in progress towards implementation of the Early Learning and Child Care Centres that Premier announced in November. We are making progress towards identifying the successful applicants and I hope to be able to announce the Centres soon.

Others may be interested in progress on the work to support the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention. Our government formed the Panel to support families and children by improving the child death review process and strengthening Alberta’s child intervention system as a whole. Once the Panel’s work wraps up, the Panel’s recommendations will guide our ongoing work on this critical priority.

I look forward to sharing more on these initiatives soon.

Budget 2017 is about making lives better for Albertans. It’s about protecting the services that matter and focusing on the areas where we can make a difference today. With a steady approach we will make progress to support families and communities.

More details on Budget 2017 are available online and I look forward to continued discussions about this and other issues that you champion as I meet more of you in the future. In the meantime, if you would like to stay informed about the work in Children’s Services, I invite you to follow the department’s new twitter presence at @AB_Children or reach out to me directly via my office.

Sincerely, Danielle Larivee Minister Children’s Services

Ministry Transition to Children’s Services and Community and Social Services Updates

Transition to Children’s Services and Community and Social Services Updates 2017

Transition Update from Deputy Ministers, Children’s Services and Community and Social Services February 24, 2017
Updates on Child Intervention, Disabilities, Inclusion and Accessibility,Strategic Planning, Policy and Quality Assurance, Corporate Services, Legal Services and Resources.

Transition to Children’s Services and Community and Social Services Updates Feb 17, 2017
See updates on   Child Intervention, Strategic Policy and Early Childhood Development, and Shared Services which includes Corporate Services, Strategic Knowledge and Technology, Legal Services and Human Resources.

Darlene Bouwsema Deputy Ministers of Children’s Services and Community and Social Services February 10, 2017
See updates on Communications, Ministry Logo,  Children’s Services, Community and Social Services and Shared Services.

Related
See Additional News, Updates and Articles

OCYA Review and Government Response Involving Death Of An 18-Year-Old Man

March 14, 2017 Child and Youth Advocate releases investigative review involving death of an 18-year-old man
The Office of the Child and Youth Advocate has completed an Investigative Review regarding the death of a young man and is publicly releasing the results of the review as outlined under the Child and Youth Advocate Act.

March 14, 2017 Children’s Services Minister Responds to OCYA Report
Minister of Children’s Services Danielle Larivee issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Review of 18-Year-Old Peter:

Young homicide victim’s voice not heard by child-welfare system, advocate says in report By Nola Keeler, CBC News March 14, 2017
A new report from Alberta’s child advocate into the life and death of an 18-year-old Indigenous man calls on the government to do a better job of transitioning troubled young people out of care. “The Ministry of Children’s Services should ensure that policies regarding transitioning youth out of care are fully understood and implemented,” Child and Youth Advocate Del Graff wrote in his investigative review into the case of a homicide victim he calls Peter…

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Child Intervention Review Panel

Working with Youth to Enhance their Natural Supports: Practice Framework

Working with Youth to Enhance their Natural Supports: Practice Framework
Burns Memorial Fund and United Way of Calgary and Area are pleased to release “Working with Vulnerable Youth to Enhance their Natural Supports: A Practice Framework”. Natural supports are relationships and associations that are ‘natural’ in the sense that they are informally and locally developed; and are based on reciprocity or give and take. Natural supports include family, friends, neighbours, coaches, team-mates, and others who comprise our social network…

Government of Alberta Introducing Legislation Supporting Survivors of Sexual and Domestic Violence

Alberta Government News Release March 7, 2017
Supporting survivors of sexual and domestic violence
The Government of Alberta is introducing legislation today that would increase access to the legal system for survivors of sexual and domestic violence…

Bill 2: An Act to Remove Barriers for Survivors of Sexual and Domestic Violence

Listen to the news conference

Alberta Government Throne Speech

Today’s speech from the throne takes significant new steps to make life better for Alberta families. Reducing school fees, building new schools, standing up in court for the Trans Mountain Pipeline, working with the federal government to create good oilfield service jobs, implementing a consumer bill of rights and expanding protections for victims of sexual and domestic assault are among key initiatives that will define Alberta’s next legislative session.

“Creating jobs, diversifying our economy, building pipelines and making life more affordable for families – that’s your government’s focus.”

Premier Rachel Notley
View Alberta Government News Release

A Government of Alberta Evening of Appreciation for Alberta Social Workers

    INVITATION

Making Lives Better through Service

A Government of Alberta Evening of Appreciation for Alberta Social Workers

Social workers deserve appreciation for the work they do every day to ensure Albertans are supported to live safe, happy, healthy lives in strong communities. That’s why we recognize Social Work Week every March. This year, to celebrate Social Work Week, and to thank Alberta’s social workers for their life-changing work, the Alberta Government is inviting social workers to a Social Work Week Reception.

Please join Community and Social Services Minister Irfan Sabir, Children’s Services Minister Danielle Larivee, as well as other government officials and caucus members, for an intimate evening to engage in conversation about the important roles social workers play in improving the lives of Albertans. Refreshments will be served.

Date: Tuesday March 7th

Time: 6:30 to 8:30 pm

Location: Wales Room – 10th Floor, Federal Building, 9820 107 Street NW, Edmonton

We look forward to seeing you there!

Please visit the website at www.acsw.ab.ca and click on the social workers tab and select social work week for additional activities during this week.

ALIGN Journal Volume 8 Fall 2017

Editorial – Being Called to Take Action and Being wicihasowin by
Research Paper – I Want to do Good so Bad: Exploring Health Capabilities
Pilot Project Review – Children and Youth in Care and Mentoring
Literature Review- Best Practices for Supporting High Risk Youth and Youth with  FASD in School:
Book Review- Redesigning Work: A Blueprint for Canada’s Future Well-Being and Prosperity
Case Study – Initial Steps in Developing a Meaningful Partnerships: A Case Study of Mahmawi-atoskiwin.

Human Rights Tribunal – First Nation’s Child Welfare News and Updates Feb 28, 2017

The F.N. Caring Society i am a witness  timeline  chronicles the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal case on inequitable funding for First Nations child welfare, which the Tribunal ruled amounts to discrimination.   View the pre-Tribunal timeline for a history of First Nations child and family services funding leading up the case.

News

Toronto Metro
‘Nothing new’ for Indigenous child welfare in budget: Blackstock  David P. Ball Metro Mar 23 2017
First Nations child welfare is going under the microscope at an Edmonton event  Thursday, one day after the federal budget disappointed critics by offering “nothing new” towards an “unfathomable” epidemic of youth suicides and underfunded services, Canada’s leading advocate told Metro…

Caring Society Written Submissions (factum) – Motions regarding Canada’s failure to comply with the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal’s orders regarding immediate relief Feb 28, 2017

See More
Human Rights Tribunal – First Nation’s Child Welfare News and Updates

AB Child Review Panel News and Updates March 1, 2017

Family voices are needed in child death reviews: Ministerial Panel member By Gareth Hampshire CBC News March 1,2017
One of the members of the Ministerial Panel on Alberta’s child intervention system is pressing the government to include families more when examining the circumstances behind their children’s deaths in care. Patti LaBoucane-Benson delivered the message to a senior official in the Children’s Services department at the latest panel meeting Tuesday…

Alberta Government Child Intervention Panel.

Ministerial panel will explore ways to improve Alberta’s child intervention system.

Meeting Summary Minutes and Audio Recordings

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel  Articles, News and Updates

Neurosequential Model Consultation

If you or your colleagues attended the two day NM Introductory Core Concepts training and implementation sessions provided in your area, and/or if you are interested in consultation to support your practice, Child and Family Services is offering a unique opportunity for consultation of this trauma informed model.

The Neurosequential Model (NM) is a revolutionary evidence-based practice based on the understanding of neuroscience and brain development. This model, developed by Dr. Bruce Perry and his team at The ChildTrauma Academy, has deepened our understanding of how we work with traumatized children and adults. By better understanding the core concepts of the NM, and utilizing that as the framework in which we understand our children and youth, we have increased our capacity to work with our clients, seeing a decrease in restraints and critical incidents, and increase in relational engagement, self-regulation, and staff satisfaction. By helping these children build the capacity to self-regulate using this approach, the children and youth have shown better access to higher-order thinking (executive function skills) and have increased retention and learning potential both in the classroom and in their home environment.

Cost: No cost to agencies. This project is funded by Child and Family Services.

Consultation includes:
1. Monthly teleconference discussions for your agency regarding the implementation and practice of the NM.
2. One half day site visit to your agency
3. 3 to 5 Clinical Consultations on clients of your choosing (using the NMT Web Based Metric)

Space is limited

For more information, contact Dr. Emily Wang at ewang@hullservices.ca

Culture of Secrecy Prompts Outburst at Child Intervention Panel

‘If they can’t give the answer, then why are we here?’: Culture of secrecy prompts outburst at child intervention panel
Emma Graney Edmonton Journal February 22, 2017
Opposition members of the government’s child intervention review panel worry a veil of secrecy and bureaucratic protectionism around child welfare will impede changes to the system. Time and again over the three panel meetings so far, social workers and managers have declined to give their opinions, lobbing the ball back into the court of panel members with, “That’s for you to decide…”

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

Ministerial Child Review Panel Minutes (2nd meeting)

Ministerial Child Review Panel Minute 2nd mtg
The second meeting of the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention was held Feb 9, 2017 at the Federal Building on traditional Treaty 6 territory. Elder Leonard Bastien provided the opening prayer, sang the Sacred White Buffalo song and acknowledged we were meeting on Blackfoot traditional territory. Elder Bastien spoke passionately of his work with children in care and families engaged with the system. Elder Bastien reminded the panel of the importance of their task on behalf of all children receiving services, particularly indigenous children; overrepresented as a result of the residential school system, cultural genocide and legislation.
The second agenda for the panel was focused on child death investigation and review mechanisms in Alberta. The public were encouraged to submit their views to CIPanel.submissions@gov.ab.ca or on-site through a written submission to the panel. Minister Larivee commented on the positive deliberations of the panel and the Chair acknowledged the commitment of the panel to work together, focused on the safety and well-being of children…

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Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

Alberta Child Intervention Panel Holds 2nd Meeting Feb 9, 2017

Alberta child intervention panel holds 2nd meeting By Slav Kornik and Phil Heidenreich Global News Feb 9, 2017
A non-partisan panel tasked with finding ways to improve the province’s review process when a child dies in government care is holding its second meeting Thursday. The public is is invited attend the Ministerial panel on Child Intervention’s meeting at the Federal House in Edmonton Thursday morning…

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Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

FAF Software Coming to Edmonton Early March to Provide Training to New Users

FAF Software will be coming to Edmonton in early March to provide training to new users of its research validated Family Assessment Form© and accompanying FAF Software.  They are looking to connect with and help other interested agencies while in town! If you are interested in participating in an info session while we are onsite in Edmonton, or if you are just curious to learn more, please contact us at kayaokuniewski@all4kids.org.

FAF Web tool  currently being used by the following agencies to facilitate the implementation of OBSD .
Hull Child and Family Services
McMan Youth Family and Community Services
Unlimited Potential Community Services
Grande Prairie Public School District
Mahmawi-atoskiwin

FAF Web integrates the research-validated Family Assessment Form © tool with improved case management functions.  With FAF Web, case workers can track information from intake through contacts, service planning, and case closure.  Its service planning feature is an efficient tool for incorporating strengths and concerns into goals developed by case workers and families.  FAF Web meets all needs by tracking and reporting on data related to family functioning, service plans, contact notes, closing summaries, caseload reports, demographic reports, and a host of other evaluation functions.  The newest version of the FAF Web, has all the features of the original FAF Pro software integrated into a platform that users can connect with any time, from anywhere.   The Family Assessment Form (FAF) is the ideal tool for assessment and case management in the family services field is a practitioner developed, user-friendly tool designed to help child welfare and family support workers assess family functioning, develop meaningful service plans, monitor progress, and to assist agencies in measuring program outcomes. The FAF tool tracks, among others, clear indicators of child safety, child well-being, permanence, and family and community support and is the ideal tool for assessment and case management in the family services field. It is a state-of-the-art case management platform designed to support best-practice service planning, program improvement, evaluation, and reporting specifically for family strengthening and home visitation programs.. The newest version of the Family Assessment Form Software, FAF Web, has all the features of the original FAF Pro software integrated into a platform that users can connect with any time, from anywhere. To upgrade to FAF Web or to set up a webinar and discuss purchasing options, please contact: Kaya Okuniewski, FAF Program Manager, at kayaokuniewski@all4kids.org

Health Canada Having Trouble Finding First Nations Kids To Help

Health Canada having trouble finding First Nations kids to help because of ‘broken’ system John Paul Tasker · Parliamentary Bureau · CBC News February 9, 2017
Department has spent only a quarter of $127M budgeted this fiscal year for Jordan’s Principle cases Senior bureaucrats tasked with providing health care to Canada’s First Nations children say they have had trouble spending new money aimed at closing care gaps because the system is partially “broken” and there is a lack of capacity on the ground in Indigenous communities.

To Fix Child Services Address Negative Narrative Around Indigenous People: Director

To Fix Child Services Address Negative Narrative Around Indigenous People: Director By: Kevin Maimann Metro Published on Tue Feb 07 2017
Bent Arrow is one of several groups contracted by the Alberta government to provide support workers for parents who are struggling to care for their children. Bent Arrow Executive Director Cheryl Whiskeyjack is speaking out about the need for change in Alberta’s child welfare system.

This is the second part of a three-part series examining Alberta’s child welfare system. Read Part 1 ‘Completely unfair’: Edmonton mother fighting to get her children out of government care The director of an organization working with families in the child welfare system says poverty and attitudes toward Indigenous people need to be addressed before the system can be fixed.

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

ALIGN Journal From Theory to Practice Residential Care for Children and Youth Special Edition Vol. 3 March 2017

This particular Special Edition is a compilation of the work that was created and presented at the
From Theory to Practice: Residential Care for Children and Youth Symposium April 28-29, 2016.
The ALIGN Association of Community Services co-hosted this learning event with the Ministry of
Human Services. The session was an opportunity for staff of both the Ministry and agencies to
come together and learn about several organizational models of residential care and how important
it is to use evidence informed practice in our care of these children and youth no matter the
environment. We explored how crucial the Foundations of Caregiver Support are and the significance
of developing meaningful relationships with the children we care for in order to assist the
change process. There was information shared about the effects early trauma and chronic stress
has on brain development and how we as caregivers can help undo some of the early harm done
to children.

CONTENT

Editorial Foundations of Caregiver Support – Jon Reeves

Growing Simple Interactions Inside Everyday Practice – Junlei Li

What Does It Mean to be Trauma Informed? From the Perspective of the Neurosequential Model. – Emily Wang, PH. D., R. Psych.

Sanctuary 101: An Overview of the Sanctuary Model – Ibet Hernandez

The Teaching-Family Model; An Evidenced Based Model – Michele Boguslofski

The CARE Program Model: Theory to Quality Practice in Residential Child Care -Jack Holden and Charles V. Izzo

Death of Disabled Alberta Teen Raises More Questions About Kids in Care Feb 7, 2017

Death of Disabled Alberta Teen Raises More Questions About Kids in Care Feb 7, 2017 Alberta Child Advocate wants improvements after 19 year old died following move to group home
By Gareth Hampshire, CBC News Posted: Feb 07, 2017
The 2014 death of a severely disabled Alberta teenager from a group home has prompted the Child and Youth Advocate to again call for improvements to the province’s child-intervention system.

Related
Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

Ministerial Panel On Child Intervention Meeting 1 Summary

Ministerial Panel On Child Intervention Meeting 1 Summary
Wednesday February 1, 2017 – 9:00am to 4:00pm

The initial meeting of the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention was held at Government House on traditional Treaty 6 territory. Elder Francis Whiskeyjack provided the opening prayer and focused on the panel’s work to support the improvement of the system and honor the stories and histories of those who have experience with child intervention. The initial agenda for the panel was largely focused on process and how the panel will work together to develop concrete actions focused on improving the health, safety and well-being of children, youth and their families and communities. Presentations were also provided regarding privacy legislation, an overview of the child intervention system and an introduction to the child death review process used by Children’s Services following death of a child who is receiving services…

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Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

Panel Reviewing Deaths Of Children In Care Criticized For Lack Of First Nations Representative

Panel reviewing deaths of children in care criticized for lack of First Nations representative
‘The lack of that information being at the table will really water down the review’ By Kim Trynacity, CBC News Posted: Feb 02, 2017 3:25 PM MT Last Updated: Feb 03, 2017

A panel asked to find ways to improve Alberta’s child-intervention system is being criticized for not including a First Nations representative.

Aside from MLAs from each political party, the panel includes three expert advisors with backgrounds in child welfare or aboriginal family issues. One member, Patti Laboucane-Benson, is director of research and evaluation for Native Counseling Services of Alberta, and identifies as Métis-Ukrainian.

Since April 2014, a total of 73 children have died while receiving government services. Forty-two of those children were Indigenous, according to information from Children’s Services…

See More
Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

Privacy vs. Lived Experience: Child Intervention Panel’s Balancing Act

Privacy vs. lived experience: Child intervention panel’s balancing act Edmonton Journal Feb 1, 2017

Shauna Parks was a teenager in government care when she contributed to an overhaul of Alberta’s child welfare act 20 years ago.

Now with a master’s degree in social work, she traveled Wednesday to Edmonton from Calgary for the first meeting of the province’s child intervention panel…

See More
Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

The Alberta Government and the Metis Nation of Alberta Signed a New 10-year Framework Agreement

Agreement with Metis Nation supports reconciliation
The agreement is designed to sustain an enduring, collaborative relationship and promote the social and economic well-being of Metis Nation of Alberta members. It also represents an important commitment on behalf of the government to work with the MNA to clarify and define how to work together on a nation-to-nation basis going forward…

ALIGN Youth Care Bulletin January 2017

If you work with youth this bulletin is for you! Included you will find resources, training and news to assist you with your youth program or youth in care initiatives

Cindy Blackstock: Trudeau Government and First Nation Kids – Update

Feds dragging their feet on First Nations child welfare: Blackstock CTV News Jan 26, 2017
The federal government is dragging its feet on rectifying the inequalities in First Nations child welfare since last year’s Human Rights Tribunal ruling, advocate Cindy Blackstock says…

Related

Cindy Blackstock: Trudeau Government Failing First Nation Kids On Health Delivery Huff Post January 19, 2017

Pressure mounts on federal Liberals to invest in First Nations child welfare CTV News Nov 1, 2016

Under fire, Liberals decide to support motion on First Nations child welfare Oct 2016

Something Wrong’ with Alberta’s Child Welfare System for Indigenous Families

CBC News Jan 24, 2017
Merwan Saher comments on findings of report on Indigenous children in care
Children’s Services needs people with project management skills, auditor general says Merwan Saher comments on findings of report on Indigenous children in care

Related
Inclusion Alberta – Cabinet Shuffle: Initial Implications for Children & Adults with Developmental Disabilities Jan 20, 2017

Cabinet changes focus on protecting children, communities A new Ministry of Children’s Services has been given a mandate to fix longstanding child intervention problems Alberta Government News Release January 19, 2019

Members of province’s child intervention review panel unveiled Edmonton Journal January 18,2017

Child Intervention Review Panel Articles, News and Updates

 

Danielle Larivee New Child Services Ministry in Alberta

Cabinet changes focus on protecting children, communities A new Ministry of Children’s Services has been given a mandate to fix longstanding child intervention problems Alberta Government News Release January 19, 2019
Danielle Larivee will serve as Minister of Children’s Services. She most recently served as Minister of Municipal Affairs. Shaye Anderson will serve as Minister of Municipal Affairs. He will also join Minister Larivee on the Municipal Governance Committee. Human Services will be renamed “Community and Social Services” and will continue to be led by Minister Irfan Sabir… Read Full

 

Related

Inclusion Alberta – Cabinet Shuffle: Initial Implications for Children & Adults with Developmental Disabilities Jan 20, 2017

Danielle Larivee to lead new child services ministry in Alberta cabinet shakeup Edmonton Journal 19, 2017

Members of Province’s Child Intervention Review Panel Unveiled

Alberta Government News Release January 18, 2017 Government moves forward with panel to strengthen child intervention Members have been selected for a panel that will explore ways to improve Alberta’s child intervention system.

The 13-member panel includes representatives from all parties in the legislature and leading Alberta experts on child intervention and Indigenous issues:

  • Chair: Debbie Jabbour, MLA for Peace River
  • Maria Fitzpatrick, MLA for Lethbridge-East
  • Nicole Goehring, MLA for Edmonton-Castle Downs
  • Graham Sucha, MLA for Calgary-Shaw
  • Heather Sweet, MLA for Edmonton-Manning
  • Cameron Westhead, MLA for Banff-Cochrane
  • Jason Nixon, Wildrose caucus, MLA for Rimbey-Rocky Mountain House-Sundre
  • Ric McIver, Interim Leader, Progressive Conservative caucus, MLA for Calgary-Hays
  • Dr. David Swann, Leader, Alberta Liberal caucus, MLA for Calgary-Mountain View
  • Greg Clark, Leader, Alberta Party caucus,  MLA for Calgary-Elbow
  • Dr. Peter Choate, MSW, PhD, Mount Royal University
  • Dr. Patti LaBoucane-Benson, PhD, Native Counselling Services of Alberta
  • Dr. Bruce MacLaurin, MSW, PhD, University of Calgary

Irfan Sabir, Minister of Human Services and MLA for Calgary-McCall, will sit as an ex-officio member on the panel.

You May Also Want To View
Members of province’s child intervention review panel unveiled Edmonton Journal January 18,2017
Need to expand powers of Alberta’s child advocate suggested by auditor general CBC News January 17, 2017
ALIGN’s Letter to Premier December 20, 2016 re: Serenity/Marie Case Review

New National Online Campaigns Support For Indigenous Youth

I Matter. You Matter. We Matter.
We Matter is a national multi-media campaign designed to gather positive messages from people across the country, to offer support for Indigenous youth going through a hard time. This is your website. They  hope you will WATCH the videos, SHARE your own, VIEW their art and stories – and most importantly, we hope you pass this forward to others and help these messages reach those in need.

Alberta Child Welfare Class Action NOTICE OF SETTLEMENT APPROVAL

The Alberta government settling a class-action lawsuit involving people who were formerly in the provincial child intervention system in January 2016.  Under the terms of the settlement, people who were previously under government guardianship, subject to a permanent ward ship order or permanent guardianship order by Alberta Child Welfare between July 1,1966 and February 19, 2008 or a temporary guardianship order by Alberta Child Welfare between July 1, 1985 and February 19, 2008  may be eligible for financial benefits.  Human Services had requested that your organization post the notice within your premises, on your website and to share with your membership.

Notice of Deadline to Make A Claim January 15 2017

Joint Letter

All Class Member claims under the Settlement Agreement must start with the making of an application to the Victims of Crime prior to January 15, 2017. Benefit amounts will be determined by Alberta’s Victims of Crime Regulation and depend on the type and severity of the injury, which can include physical and psychological harm.

For application forms and information on making a claim to the VOC, call: (780) 427-7217 or toll free at: 310-0000; or, email financialbenefits@gov.ab.ca; or visit www.victims.alberta.ca

Norm Welch Sr. Mngr Office of the Statutory Director Child & Family Services Division Alberta Human Services

Previously  Related Correspondence The Alberta Child Welfare Class Action NOTICE OF SETTLEMENT APPROVAL All persons who suffered injuries before or during a time when they were subject to a permanent warship order or permanent guardianship order by Alberta Child Welfare between July 1, 1966 and February 19, 2008, or a temporary guardianship order by Alberta Child Welfare between July 1, 1985 and February 19, 2008.

Indigenous Youth Share Stories of Displacement in Child Welfare System

Indigenous Youth Share Stories of Displacement in Child Welfare System Metro News November 2016
Documentary film sheds light on the similarities between the residential school system and child welfare placements A new documentary which screened this weekend in Calgary examines the practice of removing indigenous children from their families. (Dis)placed is not about the residential school system – it’s about the experiences of indigenous youth placed in the child welfare system…

Indigenous Healing and Trauma: Intergenerational Solutions Recordings Available

RESOLVERESOLVE 2016 Conference Presentations now available
PolicyWise for Children & Families supported The 2016 RESOLVE Research Conference, Indigenous Healing and Trauma: Intergenerational Solutions, by webcasting its keynote speakers and presentation on Promoting resilience among Aboriginal youth through healthy relationships’ programming. Keynotes were recorded and are available on the PolicyWise website.

Policywise – Supporting Every Student Series 25 Sessions Available

Tools f or schools support welcoming, caring, respectful, safe learning environments for ALL students

The Supporting Every Student Series is complete with professional learning opportunities for school staff and education leaders. The series was developed with an aim of providing the tools necessary to create and enhance welcoming, caring, respectful and safe learning environments that improve student success and well-being.
The series provides access to information on research and evidence-based practices through recorded “TedTalk” style presentations and conversation guides.
There are 25 sessions within eight topics that can be accessed below.

Help Line for First Nations and Inuit children, youth and young adults launched

A new national help line has recently been launched to support Canada First Nations and Inuit communities. The Hope for Wellness Help Line will provide immediate, culturally competent telephone-based crisis intervention counselling to First Nations and Inuit young people and adults experiencing distress. Help Line calls will be answered by experienced crisis intervention counsellors, and service will be available in English and French. Callers may also ask about the availability of service in Cree, Ojibway and Inuktitut.

Callers can access the Help Line 24/7 effective immediately.
The toll-free phone number for the line is 1-855-242-3310.

OCYA Reports and Minister of Human Services Responses

November 2016

Death of four-year-old Alberta girl prompts demand for changes to kinship care Keith Geren Edmonton Sun November 17, 2016
The traumatic death of a malnourished four-year-old girl has prompted Alberta’s child and youth advocate to demand the provincial government bolster safeguards for children removed from their parents and placed in the home of relatives.

Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Reviews titled 9-Month-Old Sharon and 4-Year-Old Marie November 15, 2016

Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Review titled 15-Year-Old Netasinim November 1, 2016

Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Review titled 17-Year-Old Onessa November 1, 2016

House of Commons Unanimously Approves Motion to Help First Nations Kids

House of Commons unanimously approves motion to help First Nations kids by ahnationtalk on November 1, 2016
OTTAWA _ The House of Commons has voted unanimously to support an NDP motion aimed at compelling the federal Liberal government to end what critics consider systemic discrimination against children on First Nations reserves. The motion, introduced by New Democrat indigenous affairs critic Charlie Angus, passed a vote today by a margin of 302-0…

Indigenous Advisory Group

Update September 2017

The  ALIGN Indigenous Advisory Group  reconvened in the Fall of 2016 in order to gain some guidance in planning for the upcoming year. Some of the current recommendations that we are working on are:

  • It was suggested that we convene a circle of government decision makers and others to share what is being done in the research and community sectors.
  • To bring together a group who has a strong understanding of Trauma and Inter-generational Trauma to help guide the next step process.
  • A lot of Agencies have found ways that work for families and we should help highlight these approaches.

Update October 2016

ALIGN is presently reconvening and regrouping the Indigenous Advisory Group with a focus on becoming familiarized with the truth and reconciliation recommendations and the UN rights of children as well as meeting the new ADM for the Community Engagement area of the MHS currently working on engagement strategies to address the indigenous concerns of the child welfare system. Please stay tuned for further information in this important area of work.

Allying With Indigenous Peoples: The Practice Of Omanitew

Update Fall 2016

ALIGN is planning training events in Edmonton and another 2 in Calgary & South over 2017. An independent evaluation of the trainings has just been completed and provides an excellent overview of the ongoing benefits they both provide with regards to individual, and organization practice and awareness. The report will be released once reviewed by the working committee.

Check Related Training Events for Current Availability

Executive Summary Report Allying With Indigenous Peoples: The Practice Of Omanitew AASCF/ACCFCR 2013
In early 2012, the Alberta Association of Services for Children and Families (AASCF) created an Advisory Group to discuss the training needs of human service workers who work with
Indigenous children and families. Based on recommendations from the Advisory Group, it was decided to pilot a four-day experiential learning opportunity, a modified version of the five-day
University of Calgary Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) course entitled “Social Work with Indigenous Peoples”. Twenty-two individuals from a variety of agencies across the province
participated in the experiential learning opportunity from October 30 – November 2, 2012…

Evaluation Report Allying With Indigenous Peoples: The Practice Of Omanitew AASCF/ACCFCR 2013
In October 2012, the AASCF sponsored 22 human service workers on a pilot test basis, with a
commitment to follow-up with them to determine what difference the experience had made. What, if anything, were they doing differently in their work with children and families as a result
of their four-day experience? What impact did it have? And what was it about the experience that was making a difference? My role would be to help explore the answers to these questions. When I first asked the question, “what difference did the training make”, it was possible of course that it had made no difference whatsoever. I was open to listening to their stories. What words did they use to describe the experience? Their words ranged from reaffirming, empowering, intense, profound, and transformational. Participants were clear that the experience had made a difference. Change happened at different levels and in different ways, but change happened…

Statement – Government of Canada Focused on Making a Difference for First Nations Children and Families

Statement – Government of Canada Focused on Making a Difference for First Nations Children and Families October 2016
OTTAWA, Oct. 27, 2016 /CNW/ – The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, along with the Honourable Jane Philpott, Minister of Health, issued the following statement today: “Our priority continues to be first and foremost the wellbeing of children. Our government welcomes, accepts and is complying with the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings and orders regarding Child and Family Services on reserve and Jordan’s Principle…

Child Welfare League of Canada Board Member Updates

Update September 2017

ALIGN continues to sit on the CWLC Board.  The most recent activity is the National Forum on infant, child mental health in Calgary the first week of October.

Update October 2016

Meeting PEI June 2016
We met with Cindy Blackstock for the First Nation Caring Society about how the CWLC can support the activities of the FNCS and their work with the truth and reconciliation recommendations and moving the agenda forward for indigenous children. CWLC wrote a letter of support and is trying to be strategic in its activities going forward.

Liberals announce $382M in new health-care funding for Aboriginal children

New funding designed to ensure equal health-care access for First Nations children Peter Zimonjic · July 2016 CBC News The federal government has announced $382 million in new funding to implement Jordan’s Principle — the rule adopted by the House of Commons in 2007 ensuring equal health-care access for First Nations children. The money will fund the Liberal government’s “new approach” to implementing the principle with the funds directed to ensure that “children’s needs are assessed and responded to quickly.”

National Aboriginal Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy (NAYSPS) Program Framework 2016

National Aboriginal Youth Suicide Prevention Strategy (NAYSPS) Program Framework
New knowledge in First Nations and Inuit youth suicide prevention demonstrates that suicide can be
prevented through coordinated initiatives carried out at various social levels 7. There is solid evidence
that suicide rates can be significantly reduced over the long term by using prevention programs. For
example, research indicates that the most effective interventions include large-scale (primary

Indigenous Youth Mental Health And Resiliency Learning Event Resources 2016

Indigenous Youth Mental Health And Resiliency Learning Event Resources 2016
The Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research hosted a one-day session on May 9, 2016 that focused on mental health promotion, suicide prevention and strengthening resilience among Indigenous youth. Presentations from Dr. Laurence Kirmayer, Gregory Brass and Deanna Cook were recorded and may be viewed online.

Government Responds to Child and Youth Advocate Special Report on Aboriginal Youth Suicide 2016

The Ministers of Human Services, Education, Indigenous Relations and the Associate Minister of Health issued the following statements in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Special Report on Aboriginal Youth Suicide… Read Full Release Here

Suicide Among Canada’s First Nations: Key Numbers 2016

CTV News -Suicide among Canada’s First Nations: Key numbers Published Monday, April 11, 2016 Nearly one quarter of First Nations adults reported contemplating suicide at some point in their life, according to a 2008-10 survey by the First Nations Information Governance Centre. These figures stand in contrast to the just 9.1 per cent of adults from the general Canadian population who had similar thoughts. Read Full Ariticle

Alberta Health Services Study Shows Self-harm High Among First Nations Youth 2015

Study shows self-harm high among First Nations youth Over 16 per cent of youth treated in emergency rooms across the province for self-harm are First Nations. But as “alarming” as that figure is, Dr. Amanda Newton, University of Alberta researcher and associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics, says the number for Aboriginal youth is higher yet…

FNCARES New Report First Nations Child Poverty: A Literature Review and Analysis (2015)

FNCARES is pleased to announce the release of First Nations Child Poverty: A Literature Review and Analysis by Melisa Brittain and Cindy Blackstock. This 5-chapter literature review and analysis examines the historical and contemporary causes and effects of First Nations child poverty. It includes an evaluation of existing poverty measures and outlines existing and proposed interventions to address the continued impoverishment of First Nations children.

CCWRP Research Watch – Overrepresentation of Aboriginal children in out-of-home care 2015

Overrepresentation of Aboriginal children in out-of-home care: Effects of agency-level variables November 2015
Summary: Data from the Canadian Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect (CIS) have shown that Aboriginal children are overrepresented in out-of-home care; this study examines the effects of agency-level variables on the overrepresentation. A consistent predictor found in earlier studies has been the proportion of investigations at an agency involving Aboriginal children; this study is a further exploration of the relationship, using previously unavailable organizational variables from CIS-2008….

Updates to The Canada Social Report: A Compendium of Social Information 2015

Updates to The Canada Social Report: A Compendium of Social Information On the recommendation of colleagues at the Canadian Council of the Blind, they added the descriptor “A Compendium of Social Information” to make clear the initiative’s purpose.  The new section on Indigenous Peoples includes data that focus on the well-being of indigenous and northern communities

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