Call For Presenters for ALIGN Conference January 26 -26, 2018 Edmonton Alberta

This year is the 10th Anniversary of the ALIGN Association of Community Services (formerly AASCF) Annual Conference! This 2 day learning event takes place in January 25 -26 in Edmonton Alberta and is designed for human services employees. Our conference includes presentations for senior leaders, board members, supervisors and front line workers.

The ongoing success of this conference is a result of ensuring we have knowledgeable, presenters who are passionate in their area of expertise. If you have a topic you think our participants would like to learn more about please contact us with your submission.

Details and Submission Form

 

Bill 205 Passed and Establishes an Advocate for Persons with Disabilities in Alberta.

May 24, 2017 the Legislature unanimously passed Bill 205 Tabled by MLA Sandra Jansen, Bill 205 establishes an Advocate for Persons with Disabilities in Alberta. This bill achieves something that people with disabilities and their advocates have been calling for for some time, and its passage is a great step towards building a more inclusive society.

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

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

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

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.

ALIGN E.D. Correspondence – Alberta Community and Social Services Assistant Deputy Minister Announcement

(Correspondence To ALIGN Association April 12, 2017 from David Morhart  Deputy Minister Alberta Community and Social Services)

It is with great pleasure that I announce the appointment of John Stinson as our new Assistant Deputy Minister for the Disability, Inclusion and Accessibility Division of Alberta Community and Social Services.  This role provides the strategic oversight of the department’s disabilities support programs, including the statutory director responsibilities, and will work closely with the Service Delivery Portfolio on the provision of supports to Albertans across the province.

John comes from Manitoba with an extensive background in the public service, including roles as Chief Executive Officer of Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries, CEO of the Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority, Vice-President of Acute Care and Planning with South Eastman Health, as well as roles within Manitoba Health and Treasury Board Secretariat.  John brings strong leadership skills in multi-stakeholder consensus building, strategic planning and community development.  He has led and championed cultural change within and across organizations and brings an effective interpersonal style, including a great sense of humour, that embraces collaborative engagement of staff, colleagues and stakeholders.

John will begin his new role on May 23.  In the interim, John Cabral will continue to cover in this role and will be key in transitioning the file on John S’s arrival.

Please join me in congratulating John S. in taking on this new role and in thanking John C. for his continued leadership before his transition back to Alberta Seniors and Housing.

David Morhart  Deputy Minister Alberta Community and Social Services

See More Related to Ministry Transition

 

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

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Related
Child Intervention Review Panel  Articles, News and Updates

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

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

Recruitment: Family Support for Children with Disabilities Provincial Parent Advisory Committee

Recruitment: Family Support for Children with Disabilities Provincial Parent Advisory Committee Nation Talk March 6, 2017

Alberta Community and Social Services is looking for parents/guardians of children with disabilities and who are currently accessing the FSCD (Family Support for Children with Disabilities) to sit on the Provincial Parent Advisory Committee (PPAC).  They are seeking representatives from across the provinces and those selected for the PPAC will also be given a seat on the Regional Parent Advisory Committee (R{AC) related to where they live…
Closing Date March 9, 2017

READ: A letter from Minister Irfan Sabir

Public Board Call

Premiers Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities and the Provincial Parent Advisory for FSCD looking for applicants to sit on public board

Public Board Call FSCD and PCSPD March 2017 regarding a renewed focus on disability services and the request for people to apply to sit on the Premiers Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities and the Provincial Parent Advisory for FSCD.  ALIGN Executive Director Rhonda Barraclough encourages those agencies  in  this area to have people from within your networks to apply.  The premiers council is trying to expand its reach and I think it would be  great way to ensure FSCD and families with persons who have disabilities in them get involved and can influence future directions of the services.  Also note the deadlines are very short.  So please let people know as soon as you can so they have time to apply.

Rhonda Barraclough
Executive Director


Contact Ms. Vicki Bertoia Director PCSPD Secretariat at 780 422-2726 or  Ms. Roxanne Gerbrandt,  Disability Support Branch FSCD PPAC at 780 408-8369

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.

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

Board of Directors Announcement of ACDS CEO’s Retirement

Ann Nicol’s retirement as CEO of Alberta Council of Disability Services (ACDS), effective May 15, 2017. Since 2007, Ann has played a critical role in the development and success of the organization, and while we will miss her and her inspiring leadership, we wish her the best of luck in her retirement and her new ventures. We want to thank her for the 10 years of dedicated service which involved many significant accomplishments.

Please see CEO Retirement Announcement Letter Feb 2017 and Memo from ACDS CEO Jan 24 17

Thank you.

Helen Ficocelli, President ACDS Board of Directors Alberta Council of Disability Services (ACDS)

The application deadline for the new CEO will be March 24, 2017 or until a suitable candidate is found. . View posting here.

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…

Related
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…

Related
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

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

Persons with Disabilities Needed for the Provincial Transportation Needs Assessment

Persons with disabilities are needed for the Provincial Transportation Needs Assessment conducted by the Medically At-Risk Driver Centre at the University of Alberta. As the scope of the project is provincial in nature, they are trying to get a representative sample from across the province. They still need participants in Calgary (14 more), the North Zone (18 more), the South Zone (19 more) and the Central Zone (9 more).

They are interested in learning more about your transportation needs (e.g., if you are able to get to medical appointments, shops for groceries, clothing, etc. or transportation for social and religious events).
Between December, 2016 and March, 2017, we will be doing a 20 minute phone survey of PWD living in Alberta. During this phone survey, they will be asking questions about how you get to where you want to go and what places you don’t go to because you don’t have a ride. They also will ask you questions about what type of service (e.g., a handivan or a bus) is needed in your community to help you to stay mobile.

Once they have finished the survey and tabulated all the information, we will share this information with individuals and organizations in communities across Alberta. That way, communities can use the information to start or improve transportation services in their area. If you are interested in taking part in this survey, you can let the staff at the (name of organization) know. They will add your name and phone number to our list of individuals who want to be called. They will not share your name and phone number with anyone not involved in they
study.

Help them recruit by sending names (and phone numbers) of individuals who would be willing to participate by faxing the attached sheet to the MARD Centre at: 780-492-2593. Once they get the names, they forward them on to Banister Research who then makes contact with the individual and schedules a time for them to complete the survey orf you have any questions please contact either
Tara Pidborochynski (Assistant Director) at pidboroc@ualberta.ca / 780-248-1728 or
Emily Hussey (Research Assistant) at ehussey@ualberta.ca / 780-492-5892..

 

Provincial Transportation Needs Assessment Sign-Up Sheet

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

New Volunteer Screening Program Improves Safety

New Volunteer Screening Program Improves Safety
Alberta non-profits now have access to new tools to help strengthen the safety and security of the most vulnerable Albertans.

In partnership with the Government of Alberta, they work with Alberta’s nonprofit sector to address volunteer screening and engagement and encourage a balance between participation, protection, and privacy. Volunteer screening helps foster safe communities and supports organizations to fulfill duty of care – for clients, volunteers, and community.

Developed with the input of non-profit voluntary sector stakeholders and police agencies, Alberta Culture and Tourism’s new Volunteer Screening Program will assist non-profit organizations with a range of resources to help reinforce existing volunteer screening practices or establish robust new ones.

Tools and training provided through the program will help organizations conduct a more thorough assessment of potential volunteers from the applications stage through interviews and reference checks to ongoing support, supervision and evaluation. In addition to identifying potential risks, effective screening also helps organizations better match the skills and experiences of volunteers with the right role in the organization.

The Volunteer Screening Program is a unique partnership funded by Alberta Culture and Tourism and administered and delivered by Volunteer Alberta. The program expands upon the existing Volunteer Police Information Check Program with a strong focus on education to support the development and enhancement of volunteer screening and management programs through online resources, learning modules, webinars and workshops.

Funding support for the cost of vulnerable sector police checks for eligible non-profit organizations will continue to be available through the program. A total of $44,000 has also been allocated to fund a limited number of Screening Development Grants. Eligible organizations can apply for a maximum of $2,000 to support efforts to build effective screening programs and practices.

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

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

Cabinet Shuffle: Initial Implications for Children & Adults with Developmental Disabilities & Their Families
Yesterday, Premier Notley shuffled her cabinet and created a new Ministerial position responsible for Children’s Services. The new Minister is Danielle Larivee.

This new department will be responsible for child care, early learning and development, child intervention, foster care and adoption, and relationships with Indigenous communities. Inclusion Alberta has repeatedly raised with this and previous governments its concerns about the very large number of children with a wide range of disabilities that are in the child intervention and foster care system. In addition, parents with intellectual disabilities also come into frequent contact with the child intervention system. Both children with disabilities and parents with intellectual disabilities have not been receiving the supports and knowledgeable resources which are essential for their greater safety and well-being. Simply separating child intervention into its own department will not substantively address the needs or significant safety concerns of children with disabilities who come into contact with child intervention or address the supports parents with intellectual disabilities require to successfully raise a family. In fact, the separation may put both children with disabilities and parents with intellectual disabilities at greater risk unless Minister Larivee is prepared to ensure, within her new portfolio, the necessity for knowledgeable and appropriate disability related supports is taken into account… Read Full

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

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

 

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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

PDD by the Numbers Fall 2016

Alberta Human Services Demographics and Regional Numbers Fall 2016
There are seven Human Services regions across Alberta. Each region contracts a number of service providers that provide supports to Albertans with developmental disabilities through the PDD program. As well, in each region, there are a number of families who manage their own supports, rather than having a service provider manage their services. Below is a regional breakdown of the number of individuals receiving PDD services, the number of service providers, and the number of families who manage their own PDD supports, as of September 2016.

Global News – Alberta should use ‘holistic’ approach to safety standards for people with disabilities: report

Global News – Alberta should use ‘holistic’ approach to safety standards for people with disabilities: report By Phil Heidenreich Oct 26, 2016

A team tasked with developing new policy alternatives for how the Alberta government approaches safety for people with disabilities submitted its final report to Human Services Minister Irfan Sabir Wedensday.

The report, Supporting Safe and Inclusive Lives, saw the Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Safety Standards Consultation Team speak with more than 2,000 Albertans over the last year about how to allow people with disabilities to lead safer lives while also being treated the same as all other Albertans…

Government of Canada Consulting with Canadians on Planned Accessibility Legislation 2016

Consultation objective: Canadians, communities and workplaces benefit when everyone can participate equally in everyday life. There has been much progress in making our society more inclusive, but we can do better. This is why the Government of Canada is committed to developing new planned accessibility legislation to promote equality of opportunity and increase the inclusion and participation of Canadians who have disabilities or functional limitations. Many Canadians continue to face barriers that affect their ability to participate in daily activities that most people take for granted.

What does an Accessible Canada mean to you? – Video
Participate in the online questionnaire
Guide for more information

New Canadian Classification Tool for Autism 2016

New Autism Classification System of Functioning: Social Communication (ACSF:SC) from CanChild Centre for Childhood Disability Research at McMaster University Canada. The Autism Classification System of Functioning: Social Communication (ACSF:SC) is a five-level descriptive system based the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF).

PDD Alberta Human Services – Supports Intensity Scale (SIS) 2016

On June 1, 2016, Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir committed to reviewing the Supports Intensity Scale (SIS) and bringing in a policy that is respectful in gauging the supports that people with developmental disabilities need. Identifying an alternative approach to planning supports for individuals in a fair, transparent and consistent manner will include exploring best practices, careful planning, and taking the necessary time to get it right.

Safety Standards update letter for individuals, families and guardians and service providers, May 3, 2016

Safety Standards News Release, April 1, 2016

PDD Safety Standards Consultation

Government Takes Action To Protect The Safety And Dignity Of Persons With Developmental Disabilities 2016

During the public consultation on the standards of safety for Albertans receiving supports through the PDD program, participants said the Regulation was confusing and caused undue stress in the community. The Minister accepted the Consultation Team’s Phase One recommendations in its summary report Read Full Release Here

Related
Consultation Phase One Summary Report
PDD Safety Standards Consultation
News: Albertans invited to share ideas about safety and disabilities

Tackling the Autism Crisis in Alberta

Tackling the autism crisis in Alberta – 4 part series CNW CALGARY, Jan. 26, 2016 /CNW/ – An estimated 1 in 86 children are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) making it the most common childhood neurological condition in Canada. A leader in policy research related to autism, The School of Public Policy is pleased today to release four communiques on issues impacting individuals with autism, their families and caregivers. The goal of The School is to provide relevant and applicable research on a problem that is growing and that will have major social and economic costs in Alberta, and worldwide…