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

 

Special Tri Provincial Research Fall 2017 Call Out

Prairieaction Foundation (PAF) is excited to announce a special tri-provincial research call-out which aims to fund research projects that will be conducted in all three prairie provinces. PAF is committed to funding research that leads to community awareness related to issues of violence and abuse and is specifically interested in research that engages in solution focused outcomes, leading to better programs to keep our communities safer. At this time, PAF is requesting three separate Tri-Provincial research projects to be conducted. Click here for details regarding the criteria and click here for details regarding application funding.

See More Grants Here

Correspondence from ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough November 10, 2017 Re: Bill 17

Correspondence from ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough November 10, 2017 Re: Bill 17

By now you are fully aware that as of January 1, 2018 Bill 17 will come into effect.  The new Labor Standards will have an impact on all of you.  We have offered training sessions around the province as have others ( ECVO/CCVO) and I am attaching a link to the Ministry of Labor  website  https://www.alberta.ca/employment-standards-changes.aspx.

Thank you to those of you who were able to figure out your banked time .  We have been able to send that information  to the ministry as an example of the costs that you will incur.  The Deputy Ministers from Children Services and Community and Support Services are meeting with the Ministry of Labor soon.  We hope to hear from them about the issues soon.

I encourage you to make sure you are fully aware of the expectations of the new legislation and prepare for how it will affect your organization.  There are some strict rules about overtime and scheduling time that need to be adhered to and in some cases you will need to make new agreements with your staff, or  you may have to restrict staff flex time and you need to pay out overtime at a higher rate.

I encourage you to review the new legislation and ask questions to the Ministry of Labor.  If there is anything else we can do let me know.  I will keep you up dated as we hear more.

Rhonda Barraclough
Executive Director
rhondab@alignab.ca
Cell:  780.233.5459

See ALIGN Related Resources – Bill 17 – Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act

ALIGN Evaluation Resource Bulletin November 6, 2017

This bulletin highlights organizational, program and client evaluation resources that have been recently added  to our sector evaluation resource directories. See what’s new!

November Is Family Violence Prevention Month in Alberta

Go Purple in November!
All Albertans – women and men, girls and boys – can show their support by hosting a Go Purple event in their communities, at work or at school during the month of November. Be creative – think about ways you can Go Purple at the events and activities you are already planning for Family Violence Prevention Month 2017.

View Free  Alberta Human Services Downloads for Promotional Resources for Family Violence Prevention Month 2017

Email Alberta Human Services with the details of your events for their calendar.

 

Join Us! ALIGN is Celebrating our 50th Anniversary

50/10 Dinner January 24, 2018 Fantasyland Hotel W.E.M. Edmonton
It’s has been 50 years of serving agencies in Alberta and how far we have come! Starting out as the AASCF in 1968 a small group of sector leaders were inspired to collaborate on better addressing the needs of agencies who serve vulnerable Albertans’ and 50 years later we are still going strong! In additions we are also celebrating our 10th Annual Conference – Building Today, Strengthening Tomorrow. In honour of these  achievements please join us Wednesday evening January 24, 2018 for dinner and entertainment  from 5pm to 9 pm at the Fantasyland Hotel, West Edmonton Mall.

Register Here

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

Alberta Findings – Vital Signs Reports October 2017

So far, twenty-two community foundations across Canada helped shed a light on local priorities  during Vital Signs week this October by getting word out about their Vital Signs reports. Meanwhile, even more foundations are hosting Vital Conversations to get communities talking about how to put this vital knowledge into action.As more and more communities join the Vital Signs movement, they collectively help paint an increasingly detailed picture of the strengths and challenges facing Canada today.

National report on belonging
Community reports across Canada

Calgary

Poverty, stress and high prices worry Calgarians in Vital Signs report

Editorial: Building a stronger city

Edmonton

Nearly one-fifth of Edmontonians feel socially isolated: Report

Lethbridge

Vital Signs takes pulse of city, area well-being

Northwestern Alberta

2017 NW Alberta’s Vital Signs report released

Crime still considered region’s top issue: Vital Signs

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

SAGE New Report “Law & Governance of Secondary Data Use: Obligations of Not-For-Profit Organizations in Alberta”

SAGE is excited to announce that, with the support of PolicyWise, Kiran Pohar Minhas has produced a report titled “Law & Governance of Secondary Data Use: Obligations of Not-For-Profit Organizations in Alberta”. This is a new and innovative area and the paper presents the legal and governance issues for, and the obligations of not-for-profits when sharing and re-using information beyond data collection for service delivery. The report aligns with SAGE’s vision of building data management capacity in the community services sector.

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.

New Alberta LGBTQ2S Youth Housing and Shelter Guidelines

LGBTQ2S-Youth-Housing-And-Shelter-Guidelines developed by the LGBTQ2S Youth Homelessness Working Group

Led by the Ministry of Community and Social Services, this group consists of representatives from community agencies from across Alberta, the Office of the Child and Youth Advocate, Children’s Services and Status of Women. As a commitment to the LGBTQ2S children and youth that we serve in Children’s Services, these guidelines have been accepted to serve as an initial ministry-wide support for our current practice. Nearly one in three homeless youth in Canada identify as LGBTQ2S. This population faces a higher risk of discrimination, violence and abuse in the shelter system than their non-LGBTQ2S counterparts. They are also at a higher risk of mental health concerns, self-harm and suicide than the general population. Research also shows that without acknowledgement or awareness of LGBTQ2S youth and their identities, front-line staff cannot respond appropriately to the needs of these youth effectively, which can result in further marginalization. The LGBTQ2S Youth Housing and Shelter Guidelines are meant to provide information to help individuals and organizations best meet the needs of LGBTQ2S homeless youth. The Guidelines are not standards or regulations, rather they are meant to support workers and organizations providing supports and services to LGBTQ2S young people. They are also meant to be a starting point for the larger discussion on how we are serving LGBTQ2S youth. Children’s Services intends to use these guidelines to inform continuous improvement to policy, practice and program development in the future. The Guidelines are a result of the evidence-based research completed on LGBTQ2S youth homelessness and the combined expertise of the members of the LGBTQ2S Youth Homelessness Working Group. I encourage you to use the best practices found within the Guidelines to ensure we are providing safe, inclusive and affirming supports for LGBTQ2S youth.

Kim Spicer, MPA, RSW
Senior Manager
Child Intervention Outcomes, Policy  and Practice Support
Policy, Practice and Program Development Branch
Child Intervention Division
Children’sServices

Participate in Study on the Link Between Children’s Play and Mental Health

Communities For All Children: The loneliness crisis and the decline of free play

The Family and Disability Studies Initiative at the University of Alberta is investigating the link between children’s play and mental health and needs your help

Are you the parent of a 4 or 5 year old child with disabilities? Participation involves completing the ‘Communities for all Children Survey’ this year and once again next year. Upon completion of the project participants will receive a summary of the research findings and a $30 gift card to acknowledge their time.

Phone (780) 492-8568 or email your mailing address to fdsa@ualberta.ca to receive a paper copy of the ‘Communities for all Children Survey’

If you have any questions please contact project manager, Dr Amber Savage, at 780 492 8568, or Professor David McConnell at 780 492 7475

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…

ALIGN Association Strategic Directions Update – We Want to Hear From You!

Dear ALIGN Members,

I hope you are having a marvelous summer.  ALIGN is reviewing its strategic directions this summer with the goal of having a strategic plan completed this fall that will lead the way for the next few years.  Last week Nicole, Cathy and I held sessions in Lethbridge, Red Deer, Calgary and Edmonton.  The feedback we heard has been incorporated into the Draft plan so far.  We want to hear for anyone else who may have great ideas.  So I have attached a draft of the plan and some of the directions members have been suggesting we move towards.  If you have any thoughts on these please or think of other things you would like to see us doing please add them to this document and send it back to me.

I would appreciate your thoughts by August 18.  After that we will be finalizing the plan and taking it to the Board of Directors.  Thank you for your participation and support. See you in the fall at the AGM  Sept 29, 2017

ALIGN Mission/Strategic Planning For Members Feedback

Rhonda Barraclough
rhondab@alignab.ca

Executive Director ALIGN Association

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

Changes to the Canada-Alberta Job Grant – more incentives to Train Employees

The Canada-Alberta Job Grant (CAJG) is an employer-driven training program where employers and government share the cost of training new and existing employees to increase their knowledge and skills to meet the needs of Alberta’s changing economy.

NEW: CAJG now offers more training incentives to employers

  • 100% of training cost covered for eligible unemployed hires (up to $15,000) with incremental training requirement waived
  • Sole proprietors can now train their employees using CAJG
  • Assistance on travel costs for small and medium-sized organizations (outside of Edmonton and Calgary) when training is over 100km one way

Check the CAJG Applicant Guide for details.

(To view other nonprofit grants Click 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.

ALIGN Strategic Direction 2017 – 2022

ALIGN Strategic Directions:

Strategic Direction #1: Develop and implement organizational sustainability strategies, including key messages and targets.

Strategic Direction #2: Promote Excellence in Professional Development and Research in Alberta.

Strategic Direction #3: Develop an ALIGN Indigenous Strategy

Strategic Directions #4: Develop a Workforce Strategy for Healthy, Sustainable, Competent Service Providers

See Full Document Including Mission, Values , Beliefs and  Objects

 

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….

Inspiration Award Deadline August 11, 2017

Inspiration Award
Up to three awards are given out to individuals and groups in each of the following prevention categories:family violence, sexual violence, child abuse and bullying
Nomination forms, with eligibility criteria, are available online or by calling 780-422-5916 (toll-free in Alberta by first dialing 310-0000).
Deadline August 11, 2017

E-Mental Health in Practice: A Survey of Mental Health Professionals in Canada

The Mental Health Commission of Canada, in partnership with the Canadian Psychological Association, the Canadian Psychiatric Association, the Canadian Association of Social Workers, and the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, is conducting a national survey related to the use of e-Mental Health by their respective membership. The survey is intended to be completed by licensed/registered professionals in the field of psychology, psychiatry, social work, counselling, or psychotherapy. Registration is required by law for the health provider to access a title or scope of practice. The last day for completing the survey will be Friday June 16, 2017.

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

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

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.

Social Policy Trends: Income Support Caseloads in Alberta

This U of C School of Public Policy summary looks at the number of Albertans collecting income support from April 2005 to January 2017. f. The number of people in Alberta, collecting social assistance, increased sharply during the 2009 recession, but did not fall back to the pre-downturn level in the following years. Numbers are rising again. The recent 2015-2016 downturn has seen the number of claimants soar, reaching a high of 54,374 in January of 2017, with no clear sign of leveling of.  For social agencies, these numbers signal what will likely be increased demands for their services in the near future.

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

Alberta Human Services Workplace Health Survey

Welcome to the 2nd round of the human-service agency Workplace Health Survey of the Healthy Workplaces for Helping Professions (HWHP) project. The purpose of this survey is to gather information about the overall health (in terms of wellness and well-being) of the human services workplace in Alberta. The human services workplace comprises agencies from child and family services, child and youth counselling, home visitation, disabilities services, and women’s shelters.

The first round of the survey was conducted in October 2015. Results of this survey have been used to help the HWHP Project (http://hwhp.ca), our partner agencies, and the Government of Alberta identify new resources and update current ones to help human services professionals keep their workplaces and their workers healthy, engaged, and productive. This information also helped human-service agencies develop their own wellness initiatives and make their workplace wellness culture stronger. This final survey aims to find out how agencies have made wellness a priority in their work, and how these efforts of agencies have turned into better well-being of their employees.

Please take about 15 minutes to evaluate the health of your current workplace. Your participation in this survey is vital in assessing workplace health and evaluating project impacts.

This survey meets the requirements for and has received approval from the University of Alberta Human Research Ethics Office. The survey is entirely anonymous.

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.

ALIGN Membership Meeting Red Deer June 2, 2017

ALIGN Membership Meeting Red Deer June 2, 2017. An agenda will be sent out closer to the date. Registration is now open through Brown Paper Tickets and we hope to see many member agencies in attendance!

150 Leading Canadians for Mental Health

Nominate a Canadian who is making a difference in mental health.

CAMH Difference Makers is a national movement to nominate and celebrate 150 Canadians making a difference in mental health.

You can join CAMH in celebrating the significant progress being made in Canada to improve diagnosis and treatment, and to break down the stigma around mental illness and addiction.

Nominate a person with lived experience, a caregiver or family member, a health professional, a researcher, an advocate, a philanthropist… or nominate a Canadian defying categorization but who is making a difference in small and big ways; in local or international circles; in public or private lives.

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.

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

 

OCYA Special Report: On-Line Survey

The Office of the Child and Youth Advocate is preparing a Special Report on LGBTQ2S+ young people. They want to hear from children and youth about their experiences with Child Intervention (Child Welfare) and/or youth justice systems.

The online survey is now open. If you are working with youth who identify as being LGBTQ2S+, please share this with them and ask them if they would be willing to complete the survey

As well, if you are a service provider/caregiver/community member working with LGBTQ2S+ children and youth, we want to hear from you about what is important and helpful in serving LGBTQ2s+ children and youth. Click here to complete the online survey

For more information call Mari at 1-800-661-3446 or visit www.ocya.alberta. Ca and click on the Pride flag.

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 Executive Director Update Re: Alberta Budget 2017

March 19, 2017

Dear members:

Last week the government announced Budget 2017.  We have been capturing the relevant information for you and placing it on our website.  There will be more analysis this week but we thought we would share what we have learned to date.

This budget for Children’s Services and Community and Support Services basically is a maintain status quo budget for both ministries. Any increases that are mentioned are to meet current needs.  No increases or forecasted increases.

In Children’s Services most increases went to growth caseload areas; financial and support agreements and advancing futures bursary funds.  The 60 FTE’s announced are to be put into the system in these growth areas.  Exactly where is still to be determined.

Senior staff are optimistic that funds will come with future recommendations made by the Child Intervention Review Panel.

We have had conversations about procurement, contracts, and moving forward with the Minister and senior executives.  With the splitting of the ministries it has been a bit confusing about who will address the procurement table recommendations.  We have made it very clear that this activity needs to receive focus and cant wait for panels.  We are assured that discussions are underway to figure out a way forward for services in child intervention.

We also  feel it is very important that the Panel get an accurate picture of the entire system and recommendations for improvement. Please review the minutes and live casts. The meetings are open to the public.  I would encourage you to attend or at least listen to it.  If you feel an area needs to be highlighted please send in a submission.   www.childinterventionpanel.ca

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to email or call rhondabarracloug@alignab.ca 780 485-3580

Rhonda Barraclough ALIGN Executive Director March 19, 2017

CCVO Budget 2017 Holds the Line on Spending March 17, 2017

CCVO Budget 2017 Holds the Line on Spending March 17, 2017

Budget 2017-18 holds the line on spending as Alberta enters the third year of economic downturn. The budget maintains spending on front-line public services, which is consistent with what the government had signaled leading up to yesterday’s release. A projected $10.3 billion deficit should remain a concern to the sector, as potential future cuts to balance the budget could significantly impact nonprofit organizations.

“While the budget provides much needed financial stability for organizations struggling to meet increased community needs and coping with reductions in other funding sources, the longer-term consequences of relying so heavily on debt to finance government operations is concerning,” says Katherine van Kooy, President and CEO of the Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations (CCVO)…

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…

See Related
Child Intervention Review Panel

Alberta Family Wellness Initiative (AFWI) Current Literature and Research – February 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.

NEW

Current Literature and Research – February 2017

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.

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

Third-Quarter Sole-Source Service Contracts Online

Alberta Government News Release Feb 7, 2017Third-Quarter Sole-Source Service Contracts Online
The province’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 138 contracts with start dates on or before Dec. 31, 2016. Of this number, 113 support government business and 25 provide direct social supports through Human Services, now called Community and Social Services. The total value of these contracts is approximately $31.7 million. The online database will continue to be updated on a quarterly basis, to support procurement accountability across the Government of Alberta…

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 Government Under Fire for Response to Record 343 Fentanyl Deaths

Alberta Government Under Fire for Response to Record 343 Fentanyl Deaths y Min Dhariwal, CBC News Posted: Feb 07, 2017
Facing a grim and growing death toll from fentanyl overdoses — a total of 343 last year — the Alberta government announced its latest steps Tuesday to curb the crisis, though critics were quick to condemn the moves as weak and wanting. The government announced it will make opioid antidote kits available to all first-responders and to the general public, without prescriptions..

See Additional
Fentanyl/Opiate Naloxone AB Resources and News

Association Calls for Professional Regulations After Assault on Youth Centre Worker

Association Calls for Professional Regulations After Assault on Youth Centre Worker Clare Clancy February 7, 2017

A longtime worker in Alberta’s child welfare system says it’s common for caretakers to be left alone at night, putting both children and staff in residential facilities at risk.

“What often happens in programs is that you are well staffed during the day, or into the evenings, but at night they often are single-staffed,” said Catherine Hedlin, president of the Child and Youth Care Association of Alberta.

She is advocating for legislation that would place child and youth care counsellors under the Health Professions Act to regulate the industry…

You May Be Interested in ALIGN Resource Directory for Alberta Emergency After/Hours Caregiver Support
After-Hours Crisis Support Services for Caregivers
Pharmaceutical Nurse Supports Available
Lone Worker Apps, Safety and Considerations
Natural Disasters – Supporting Client Trauma

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

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

AB Opiod and Naloxone News and Updates

Alberta government under fire for response to record 343 fentanyl deaths Naloxone kits will be available to all police, firefighters and paramedics, and to members of the public Min Dhariwal · CBC News Feb 8, 2017

Province Expands Naloxone Program, Adds Treatment Spaces February 7, 2017
Alberta firefighters have greater access to lifesaving naloxone kits now that all first responders can administer naloxone by injection.

See Additional
Fentanyl/Opiate Naloxone AB Resources and News

Awards Open for Application February 2017

2017 P. H. Bryce Award for Children and Youth!
Award nominees must show how they have overcame challenges to stand up for the rights of First Nations, Métis and Inuit children, .Deadline extended! Submissions are due at by 12 noon Eastern Time on February 15th, 2017.

City of Edmonton Halls of Fame & Awards of Distinction
Recognize and honour Edmonton’s most outstanding citizens who, through their contributions in arts and culture, community service, and sports, or through extraordinary service to their communities have made exemplary contributions to the quality of life in Edmonton. Deadline Feb 16, 2017

The Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health  2017 Champions of Mental Health Awards. The annual Champions awards brings together members of the CAMIMH network, political decision makers, business leaders, members of the national media, sponsors and other stakeholders to celebrate individuals and organizations whose outstanding contributions have advanced the mental health agenda in Canada.Nominations will be accepted until February 24, 2017

City of Edmonton Mayor’s Awards
Recognizes those who make significant contributions to Edmonton’s livability for all, and shines a spot light on innovations in accessibility. Four award categories – Employers, Ewen Nelson Award for Self-Advocacy, Outstanding Service, and Accessible Homes and Buildings – recognize individuals, organizations and businesses in Edmonton who use creative methods to ensure the dignity and inclusion of persons with disabilities. Applications Now Open

The Alberta Order of Excellence
Recognizing a remarkable Albertan who has made significant contributions that will stand the test of time. Nominations are accepted and considered year-round but must be received by February 15 to be considered for induction in the same calendar year.

The Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers
Honouring the dedication and commitment of volunteers. Any person who is a Canadian citizen and who has made significant, sustained and unpaid contributions to their community in Canada or abroad is eligible.  Nominations are accepted on an ongoing basis throughout the year.

 

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…

See More
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

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

Volunteer Canada Campaign Kit – National Volunteer Week April 23 – 27, 2017

The Campaign Kit is full of free, downloadable tools and resources designed to assist all organizations in planning their NVW campaigns. It contains:

Graphics/Templates:

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.

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

 

Alberta Family Wellness Initiative Updates

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.

NEW
Current Literature and Research

You May Also Want To view

Additional Family Wellness Resources

Video from the Fourth Western Australian Signs of Safety Gathering October 2016

Video from the Fourth Western Australian Signs of Safety Gathering  October 2016
The Western Australian Department for Child Protection and Family Support hosted their fourth Signs of Safety Gathering. Featuring the theme “Reflect, Reboot, Renew” the event was attended by Departmental staff, representatives from other government and non-government agencies, and also international presenters:

Mike Caslor – Canada
Beth Farquharson – Canada
Jill Devlin and Lee Roberts – New Zealand

Additional

Signs of Safety

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

AEY Conf Oct 2017 Posters Submission Application

AEY 2017 poster submission form
Doing What’s Right: Through a Social Justice Lens
All of us do the work that we do because we want to make a difference. The elements of who we are create a lens through which we see and interact with the world. As professionals, it’s important to reflect on how this lens impacts our beliefs, our practice and even the tools we use in our work with children and families. The year 2017 is the 35th anniversary of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom and this year’s Alberta Early Years Conference will focus on how to effectively protect the rights of all children and families by examining, understanding and deconstructing our individual and collective lens. AEY 2017 poster submission form
Please complete as soon as possible but no later than February 24, 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

 

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

Child and Youth Advocate Launches Special Report on LGBTQ Youth

Child and Youth Advocate Launches Special Report on LGBTQ Youth Metro Edmonton January 19, 2017
Report responds to complaints of stigma and harassment in child welfare and youth justice systems.
Alberta’s Child and Youth Advocate is building its first-ever report to protect “LGBTQ2S” youth in the child welfare and youth justice systems, after an outcry from young people about the stigma and harassment they endure.

The office is calling on youth who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning or two-spirited to share their experiences for the report, which will eventually make a series of recommendations to the government this fall….

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

CBC News – Need to expand powers of Alberta’s child advocate suggested by auditor general

Need to expand powers of Alberta’s child advocate suggested by auditor general CBC News January 17, 2017
Alberta’s auditor general has put forward ideas that would give the province’s child and youth advocate more clout, and compel bureaucrats to explain how they follow or ignore recommendations from the advocate’s office.

“Reports from my office are automatically referred to a standing committee of the (legislative) assembly,” said Auditor General Merwan Saher. “That’s not the case with the child and youth advocate.”

Saher submitted his ideas to an all-party legislative committee reviewing the Child and Youth Advocate Act. He said he waded into the discussion after seeing the differences between how recommendations from his office are handled compared to what happens to recommendations made by the child and youth advocate…

You may also want to see ALIGN’s Letter to Premier December 20, 2016 re: Serenity/Marie Case Review

Transitioning From Care Guide – Revised Edition

Now Available! Revised Edition (Please Note: This a large file and may take a minute or two to display)
Transitioning From Care Revised Version 2016
Jeff Solberg in collaboration with AASCF and AFPA. Developed to improves outcomes for youth in care and their caregiver

Human Services Evaluation Resource Bulletin Dec. 2016

This bulletin is full of great evaluation resources and tools to help support your organization with your evaluation efforts be they client, program or organizational. ALIGN serves a broad range of service providers within the human service sector so I’ve tried to include resources relevant to the varied needs of our members. Don’t forget to check out the great articles and training opportunities in the side bar too!

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.

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.

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

ALIGN Executive Directors Update October 2016

ALIGN Executive Directors Update October 2016
This document was presented to the Board of Directors at our last Board meeting. It is a comprehensive review of the work we are doing at ALIGN. The Board requested that I forward it to the members as a good Executive Director Update. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact myself, Nicole and Cathy at anytime. We want our members to be informed.

Rhonda Barraclough
Executive Director

Alberta Mentoring Partnership Youth in Care (YIC) Mentoring Project

Update September 2017

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.

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.

 

Alberta Mentoring Partnership  Youth in Care (YIC) Mentoring Project Update August 2017

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

Alberta Mentoring Partnership  Youth in Care (YIC) Mentoring Project Update October 2016
ALIGN sits at the Alberta Mentoring Partnership  leadership table and chairs the Youth in Care (YIC) Mentoring Project
The National Mentoring Conference: Mentoring is Catching On will be held in Nov 2016 and our project will be presenting there. We have also written an article that will be published in our next ALIGN Journal which will be of interest across Canada.

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…

Legislative Assembly Province of Alberta October 28, 2016

Legislative Assembly Province of Alberta October 28, 2016

Mrs. Pitt to propose the following motion (Due Day 17):
That an Order of the Assembly do issue for a Return showing:
Copies of internal working documents or reports prepared by or on behalf of the Government from May 22, 2015, and March 7, 2016, pertaining to there view conducted by the Minister of Human Services to improve the management of the Public Trustee common fund as well as the reporting processes of the Public Trustee, as referenced in a Government news release issued February 10, 2016.

Moved by Mr. Dang (Time remaining: 24 minutes):
Be it resolved that the Legislative Assembly urge the Government to take steps to increase awareness in Alberta’s schools of the effects of cyberbullying.

Mr. Gotfried to propose the following motion:
Be it resolved that the Legislative Assembly establish a special committee to conduct a review of the current state of affordable housing in Alberta and in conducting its review the committee shall consult with key public, private, and non-profit stakeholders; study attainable home ownership, workforce housing, low-income rental accommodation, seniors’ housing, and homeless housing options; and, make recommendations for the creation and implementation of a comprehensive provincial affordable housing strategy.

Ms Luff to propose the following motion:Be it resolved that the Legislative Assembly urge the Government to review section 85(1) of the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act, and section 25(2)(d)(iii) of Adoption Regulation AR 187/2004, with a view to removing the
prohibition on prospective adoptive parents that currently prevents them from advertising and publishing a profile.

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)

Update – September 2017

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 Calgary on January 23rd and the second January 24th in Edmonton. 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 deadline March 31, 2018 and to utilize the funds if they have staff that needs the training.

Update January 2017

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.

Videos

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

Celebrating and Supporting Diversity Presented by David Rust

Drugs 101 Jennie McLester

View All Conference Video’s

History

Because of the good work done by the Psychotropic Medication Committee who developed the “Pathways to Better Mental Health” resource, the same individuals were asked to participate on the MHFA symposium/ training committee. The committee members representing foster parents ALIGN, Ministry of Human Services, agencies, CASA, and the AFPA met on June 20, and August 11 and Sept 15 to discuss the symposium development and other training that will be helpful to support caregivers in the mental health area. “Caregiver” encompasses agency and department foster parents, kinship parents, adoptive parents, residential and group care staff.
The main theme of the symposium will be the mental wellness of youth in care, the use of psychotropic medications and how caregivers can become more knowledgeable in supporting these youths. We plan to have medical expertise as well as culturally informed individuals presenting. Representatives from the OCYA have agreed to present and this will include hearing from youths who are or who have experienced treatment with psychotropic medications. The presentation will include what worked, what didn’t work and what could caregivers do differently to support the youth better.

Workforce Alliance: Cross Association Workforce Survey

The Alberta Government: Workforce Alliance was launched in April 2012 to address support for a stable and sustainable workforce that meets the needs of children, families and adults with disabilities. It consists of government representatives and service providers, who work together to create a long-term plan for the workforce.

Alberta Human Services Workforce Alliance Strategic Plan – (2013 and revised 2016)
Building the Social Services Workforce of the Future April 2013 Submitted by: Human Services Workforce Alliance

ALIGN Workforce Alliance Update October 2016
ALIGN was previously requested by the Workforce Alliance to complete a cross association workforce survey but it is unclear at this time if this will proceed as it seems to be less of a government priority following reorganization of the Ministry

The Extent of the “Main Associations Contracted” Sector Prepared by Boles Consulting May 2015
A significant component of the nongovernment social service sector, including non-profit and for-profit agencies, enters into contract and grant funded agreements with the Ministry of Human Services to deliver services to vulnerable individuals and families. Most of the agencies hold membership(s) in one or more of 4 associations which commit to supporting their efforts and promoting the delivery of quality services. The group of agencies is identified here as the “Main Associations Contracted” sector and referred to as the “MA Sector” or “Sector”. The 4 associations, their members, and the Ministry of Human Services have a collective interest in describing the Sector…

AASCF (ALIGN) Review of Provincial Budget 2015
The Workforce Alliance continues to work as a joint government and community committee that gives advice to the Ministry on issues of workforce. WE sit at that table and continue to advocate strongly for a healthy viable human services contracted workforce

AASCF (ALIGN) 2014 Membership Survey Results & Analysis Boles Consulting
Includes data on impact on wage increases, workforce turnover, retention and recruitment and related workforce information.

AASCF (ALIGN) Annual Report 2013/2014
Workforce Challenges/ Issues and Efforts to Date
The Workforce Alliance remains a viable committee. At this time it is considering what a healthy workforce is and what it can do to work towards developing that. Currently a literature review of this area is underway and some data is being gathered to draw a picture of the sector including the agencies that sit within AASCF, ACDS, AWSA, AHVNA. This is collaborative work that is being conducted with government input as well.

Over the past year the focus has been on wage increases, contracting and looking at ways to make contracts more consistent and flexible, and training in various parts of the sector.
Wage increases:

Generally speaking in 2012/2013 there were $1500.00 bonuses for front line delivery staff and a 5% increase in wages. There was some variation on this in certain sectors. At the time it included Women’s Shelters, Child and Family services contracted agencies and agencies contracting to provide PDD services, and brain injury providers

AASCF (ALIGN) Membership Minutes 2013
Workforce Alliance – This is a provincial committee because the Premier and ministers decided this sector is important and they need to deal with our issues and concerns.  Even though there was a bad news budget they kept their commitment.  The work that needed to be done couldn’t be done without this sector.  We have come a long way in the last 5 years.The agencies will be given the task on how the wage increase money will be allocated.  There is another wage increase year but accountability and responsibility comes with the money.  As they continue to invest money in this sector they need information from us on what a difference the increases are making.  We will be sending out a survey to gather this information.  Operational costs have been discussed is a separate issue.

Alberta Workforce Updates & News
AB Human Services Contracting
ALIGN Reports
Provincial Budgets

Opioid Strategies/Resources

Update October 24, 2017

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

Update September 2017

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.

Related Resources

Alberta Health New Report: “Opioids and Substances of Misuse: Alberta Q2 Interim Report 2017

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…

College of Physicians tells members to report youth who use fentanyl to Children’s Services Edmonton Journal May 13, 2017
The bulletin refers to an unidentified Alberta doctor who was reportedly treating a minor, under the age of 18, for addiction. According the college, the doctor had known for three years that the young patient was using fentanyl. But the doctor never contacted Children’s Services.

“In this case, the physician had an obligation to notify proper authorities because of the significant risk of an accidental fentanyl overdose by the minor,” Dr. Michael Caffaro, the college’s assistant registrar and complaints director, told his members.

“I hope this reminds all physicians of their duty to report in such circumstances.”

CDC Fentanyl: Preventing Occupational Exposure to Emergency Responders
The risks associated with fentanyl and its analogs highlight the need for first responders to perform a risk assessment on each crime scene and follow established work practices appropriate for the specific job tasking along with wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) to effectively manage risks that may cause an exposure. Established work practices are written policies and procedures, as well as tactics and techniques, used when fentanyl may be present to minimize the risk of exposure. This DEA website highlights the importance of adhering to established policies and procedures: DEA Issues Carfentanil Warning to Police and Public Dangerous opioid 10,000 times more potent than morphine and 100 times more potent than fentanyl

New Website – Fentanyl Safety for First Responders
The status and trends of the illicit drug trade, which includes Fentanyl, Fentanyl analogues and other potent synthetic opioids and analgesics in Canada are ever evolving. The intention of this site is to provide first responders with accurate safety information related to situations where opioids may be involved.

Alberta government under fire for response to record 343 fentanyl deaths Naloxone kits will be available to all police, firefighters and paramedics, and to members of the public Min Dhariwal · CBC News Feb 8, 2017

Province Expands Naloxone Program, Adds Treatment Spaces February 7, 2017
Alberta firefighters have greater access to lifesaving naloxone kits now that all first responders can administer naloxone by injection.

Additional Related

Opioids and Substance of Misuse Fourth Quarter Report (pdf)

Responding to Alberta’s Opioid Crisis Public Progress Report (pdf)

Opioid Poisoning Puts More Canadians In Hospital Each Year. Here’s What Ottawa Plans To Do Karen Howlett And Kelly Grant The Globe And Mail Last Updated: Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016

Alberta Implementing New Tools to Address Overdoses/Deaths Related to Fentanyl and Opioids Fall 2016

29th Legislature, 2nd Session (2016) Bill 205: Pharmacy and Drug (Pharmaceutical Equipment Control) Amendment Act, 2016

Video – Mike Ellis Members’ Statements Legislative Assembly of Alberta 2nd Session of the 29th Legislature May 9th, 2016

Video – MLA Drever Speaks in Support of Bill 205 – Pharmacy and Drug Amendment Act

Mental Health Advisory committee. Team members continue to focus on Alberta’s fentanyl response, while also taking on the broader mandate of supporting the implementation of Valuing Mental Health: Report of the Alberta Mental Health Review Committee

AMH – Video – Listen and Learn, May 2015 – Fentanyl Awareness This episode of the Listen and Learn series discusses fentanyl, its impact in Alberta, emergency interventions, and prevention/harm reduction strategies.

CAMH Course: CAMH Opioid Dependence Treatment Core Course (Alberta Version)
This course is the foundation of the Opioid Dependence Treatment Certificate Program. The course is designed to promote interprofessional collaboration among the health care team involved in opioid dependence treatment. In this online course physicians, nurses, pharmacists and counsellors/case managers learn skills and review guidelines for effective and safe management of clients receiving methadone or buprenorphine maintenance treatment for opioid dependence.

Child Intervention Practice Framework

Update September 2017

Child Intervention Practice committee is presently reviewing how to create consistencies and best practice provincially. This committee consists of Regional managers. ALIGN and the AFPA.
See index for related topics

 Update October  2016
Agencies were asked to submit a PQR in 2016 and were required to answer if they would be providing “Trauma Informed” programming. Through the work of the document of Foundation of Caregiver Support it is the expectation of CFS that anyone providing services will be Trauma – Informed in their practice. This term used in conjunction of the understanding of the three pillars of the Foundation of Caregiver Support are expected to provide clarity to the sectors providing front line services.

Nicole McFadyen (ALIGN) has spent the last few months attending several different “Trauma Informed” training sessions. Some have been Provincial intiatives like the Neurosquential Model of Therapeutics (NMT) funded by the Alberta Children and Family Sevices and provided by Hull Child and Family Services. Others, have been Trauma Informed Training from Early Childhood Development Support Services (ECDSS) , as well as Alberta Health Services Trauma training webinar. All courses do provide information regarding the Core Story, Brain Development and Trauma. They do provide information on working with individuals who have experienced trauma and the neruodevelopmetnal approach to understanding these individuals. Some also look at how being a caregiver in the field provides exposure to vicarious trauma and Trauma Informed practice from an organizational level. Presently the Palix Foundation is working on their own Trauma training series. The Sheldon Kennedy Advocacy Care Centre is also developing an online Trauma Awareness Training. In collaborative conversation with Agencies, CFS, Palix Foundation and the Sheldon Kennedy Advocacy Care Centre and the Foundation of Caregiver Support Steering Committee (FOCS), there has been some agreement that the general term may be providing misunderstandings with regards to the overall definition and/or terms of references for the term “Trauma Informed ” practice. Presently we are meeting to work out a definition that will give everyone a better understanding of where individual sector practices sit on the spectrum.

The FOCS is doing a literature review to look at different Evidence – based models of therapy that are Trauma-Informed. The committee has also requested advisory from the Provincial Collaboration table for future recommendations and direction. Children and Families Services division has completed the development of 101 training to look at 4 main areas from this document. The Core Story of Brain Development, Grief and Loss and Trauma, Stress and the Developing Brain. This 101 training series is presently being piloted the AFPA Fall 2016 conference and the ALIGN 2017 January conference. They will be requesting feedback from participants in order to make changes to the curriculum as the pilot rolls out over the next several months. The developers are also in the beginning phases of providing a fifth module to look at Multigenerational trauma through an Indigenous lens. The 101 training series working group has invited ALIGN to join the group to provide review and input into the training curriculum and delivery. This group is meeting later this fall to work on implementations of participant feedback.

Alberta Human Services Enhancement Policy Manual (Manual) 2016 contains policies and procedures that direct casework staff when delivering services under the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act (CYFEA). The policies have been written in a second person active voice and directly address casework staff unless another role is specifically identified. The Manual is comprised of three distinct parts: Enhancement Policy Manual – Intervention, Enhancement Policy Manual – Placement Resources, and Enhancement Policy Manual – Adoption…

2015

Alberta Human Services Child Intervention Practice Framework (CIPF) Focus on Aboriginal community conversations, the policy and legislative review of the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act and the Child Intervention Practice Framework (CIPF)

2014

Ministerial Roundtable: Investigations and Reporting of Deaths and Serious Injuries Summary Report (April 2014)

Roundtable reading and resources

CIPF Engagement Summary Results of Stakeholder Engagement on the Child Intervention Practice Framework Principles Child and Family Services Division Results of Stakeholder, October 2013 – February 2014

Revised Enhancement Policy Manual (Manual) November 2014
Contains policies and procedures that direct casework staff when delivering services under the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act (CYFEA). The policies have been written in a second person active voice and directly address casework staff unless another role is specifically identified.

Child Intervention Forum May 2014
Video’s From Child Intervention Research Forum – May 1, 2014

CIPF Stakeholder Engagement
CIPF Engagement Summary – Results of Stakeholder Engagement on the Child Intervention Practice Framework Principles, October 2013 – February 2014

Child Intervention Round Table

Health, Wellness and Safety in the Child and Family Services Sector

Update September 2017

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.

 

Update May 2017

Healthy Workplaces Research Team Meeting Tue May 30, 2017 9am – 12pm
Contact: ttbarker@ualberta.ca

AGENDA
Preview preliminary survey results
Review Conference plans
Review end-of-project plans It appears that our original goal to “influence” provincial wellness policy needs to be altered: we want to “be” provincial wellness policy. This means that we need to undertake a campaign to encourage the Ministry of Labour to take up our Healthy Workplaces Framework as its recommended framework. To do this we need your help to develop a clear strategy with action items for the rest of the year. Your contribution is vital, as it has been throughout the entire project.

Survey Open Now! – 2nd Round
Workplace Health Survey of the Healthy Workplaces for Helping Professions (HWHP) project.

Healthy Workplaces Intervention Framework: We are beginning to see a framework that we can make available to non-profit human-services sector agencies in 2017.

Now Open for Registration – The Healthy Workplaces for Helping Professions

Healthy Workplaces Conference 2017

Mark your calendars! The Healthy Workplaces Conference 2017 will occur on October 13, 2017 at the Lister Centre, University of Alberta. This province-wide conference will showcase the final results and provide tools for developing and implementing sustainable workplace wellness programs for non-profit human service agencies. Participation is open to all human services agencies in Alberta

As leaders and employees in the nonprofit human-services sector of Alberta, you are invited to participate in a province-wide educational and resource/networking conference marking the completion of the Healthy Workplaces for Helping Professions project that ALIGN has been participating on (See below).  Join us for an exciting day of project results, policy framework descriptions, workshop opportunities, and professional networking.

Topics:  Employee engagement and wellness

Keynote:  Dr. Graham Lowe, “Redesigning Work to Support a Vibrant Workforce — Lessons for Human Services.”

Date:  Friday, October 13, 2017

Cost:  $95 (Early bird before June 30), $125 Regular fee (All prices include the registration fee, coffee breaks and lunch.)

Conference Brochure

Conference Registration Web Page

Related

Five Ways to Reduce Stress at Human-Services Work. Ideas from participants of our Be a Wellness Leader Workshops to make the office a place you want to go every day.

Wellness Program Ideas for Your Workplace. Our infographic lists wellness program ideas suggested by participants of our Be a Wellness Leader Workshops. Any wellness initiatives must be developed based on and evaluated against the Five Wellness Pillars, following the Wellness Cycle.

The Healthy Workplaces Framework Infographic. 

The Healthy Helping Cycle  Healthy Helping Cycle This article explains the relationship between the process of client assistance and health and the growth of a vibrant, healthy organization.

Be a Wellness Leader Workshop Slides.  Take good notes

Health Risk Daily Assessment This tool provides a way for front-line staff to assess risks on a daily basis.

The Helping Cycle this tool provides a way for front-line staff and supervisors to assess risks in specific situations and to find ways to grow challenges into strengths rather than hazards into stress.

Welcome to the Be a Wellness Leader Workshop.
The following items have been developed by the Healthy Workplaces Project Team members and tested at conferences and in the Winter 2016 BWL Workshop Series. They are presented here for the use by non‐profit human‐service agencies in Alberta. There is no charge for their use and they are presented “as is.” The workshop is intended to be a half‐day or 2‐3 hour format and presenters can adjust the time to the situation. There is no cost for the materials.

Workplace Health and Wellness-The Next Step in Workplace Productivity
Presented at ALIGN Chapter Meeting, Norwood Centre, November 5, 2016

Learning From Employees The Healthy Workplaces Research Summary Report By Thomas Barker, Project Lead Hoa Tran, Research Coordinator July, 2016 (ALIGN Partnership)

See OHS Library

 

Signs of Safety/Family Finding Updates

ALIGN Signs of Safety

Fall 2016 Nicole McFadyen (ALIGN) has been invited to sit on the Signs of Safety working group. Updates to come in this area.

Signs of Safety Is an innovative strengths-based, safety-organized approach to child protection casework. The model of its approach was created in Western Australia by Andrew Turnell and Steve Edwards, who worked with over 150 front-line statutory practitioners and based it on what those practitioners know works well with difficult cases. The Signs of Safety approach has attracted international attention and is being used in jurisdictions in North America, Europe and Australasia

See News and Resources for Signs of Safety

Pathways to Mental Health Making Every Step Count for Children in Care – AASCF and AFPA 2016

Pathways to Mental Health Making Every Step Count for Children in Care – AASCF and AFPA 2016
Pathways to Mental Health Making Every Step Count for Children in Care When someone we care for experiences mental health concerns we naturally want to ensure that he or she receives the best care available, as soon as possible. However, most parents have little experience navigating the ins-and-outs of the mental health system. Unfortunately, the steep learning curve can end up costing valuable time, delaying treatment and adding to the grief, pain, and suffering for both the child and the family around him. Using this guide can help you avoid delays

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.

Child and Youth Services (CYS) Contract Updates

Update – August 2016

First-quarter, sole-source government service contracts disclosed The Government of Alberta’s online database has been updated with service contracts awarded outside a formal competition process during the last fiscal quarter.

Procurement Advisory Table The Agency and Human Services Procurement Advisory Table (PAT) is intended to provide a platform for informal, focused dialogue between Human Services and a small group of leaders from the service provider sector about the ministry’s contracting and procurement practices. The PAT provides an opportunity to leverage the experience, ideas and influence of these sector leaders on the design and implementation of future-state contracting strategies or approaches. The development of these strategies will align with Human Services’ goal of integrated service delivery, and support service delivery partnerships that are efficient, effective and achieve the outcomes Albertans need and expect.

Terms of Reference

Membership List

Update CYS and the Service Delivery Regions – Where Things Are At June 2016
Edmonton and Calgary either have or will be raising the following issues with ALIGN

Child and Youth Services (CYS) Contract Templates: Summary of April 21, 2016 Discussion (ALIGN and Human Services) and Recommendations

Innovations in Outcome Based Service Deliver in Calgary, Alberta February 2015 by Susan Gardiner, Bruce MacLaurin and Jon Reeves

 

Human Services Annual Report 2015-16

Human Services Annual Report 2015-16
The ministry’s annual report for the year ended March 31, 2016, was prepared under my direction in accordance with the Fiscal Planning and Transparency Act and the government’s accounting policies.
All of the government’s policy decisions as at June 3, 2016 with material economic or fiscal implications of which I am aware have been considered in the preparation of this report…

Honourable Irfan Sabir Minister of Human Services June 2016

 

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

Alberta Health Services Addiction and Mental Health Mobile Apps Directory 2016

Alberta Addiction and Mental Health Research Partnership Program and Alberta Health Services 2016 Addiction and Mental Health Mobile Application Directory
This document includes information about mobile applications (apps) related to addiction and m
ental health. It provides a directory of electronic resources for different mobile platforms which may be used as aids in mental health or addiction conditions. The information in this report was gathered and collated from various organizational websites and other information sources in the public domain. The information represents a brief cross -section of current apps
related to addiction and mental health available for the general mobile device user. Apps have been grouped into categories of disorders according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental
Disorders 5 (DSM 5)1 .These categories are not mutually exclusive.

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

Minister of Human Services Responds to Fatality Inquiry Report 2016

April 12, 2016 Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the report from the fatality inquiry into the death of a person receiving services funded by the Persons with Developmental Disabilities program: Read Full Statement

Minister of Human Services Responds to OCYA Report March 21, 2016

Minister of Human Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the Child and Youth Advocate’s Investigative Review: Read Full Release Here

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…

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….

Foundations of Caregiver Support (FCS)

Update September 2017

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 up coming 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 is many ways for Organizations and their programs to make sure they are meeting these common elements in all the work they do.

Update June 2015

Foundations of Caregiver Support – June 2015
This document provides the vision and purpose of the Foundations of Caregiver Support and a description of it’s three foundational pillars: child development, trauma, and loss and grief. The document is part of a communication and engagement strategy for Child Intervention staff and stakeholders. Primary stakeholders include: Human Services staff and divisions, Delegated First Nation Agencies (DFNA), Alberta Foster Parent Association, ALIGN, and other agencies, partners and the community…

Pharmaceutical Nurse Supports Available

Child Adolescent and Family Mental Health
Pharmaceutical Nurse Supports Available
Jeffrey Cheng has begun in his role as Pharmaceutical Nurse Consultant. Jeff’s role is in partnership between AACSF, CFS, and CASA. He can begin to receive referrals immediately from CFS Managers, Foster Parent Agency Managers and Group Care Managers. Jeff will primarily be located at the HSBC Building in Edmonton. He is available during regular business hours Monday through Friday and can be reached by phone at (780) 644-3303, by cell at (780) 221-2523, or via e-mail at jcheng@casaservices.org. Should you wish to communicate with Jeff about any nursing matters, please just be aware not to send any private identifying information through e-mail. Matters that might be of interest to consult with Jeff about:
• Any questions relating to medication, and specifically with regard to psychotropic
medications
• Queries and clarification needs about medication as it relates to a diagnosis
• Desired information on Mental Health and/or Addictions treatment and/or
diagnosis
• Questions relating to various diagnosis such as ADHD, Anxiety, Oppositional
Defiant Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, PTSD, Tourette’s Disorder,
Depression, Mood related diagnosis, FASD, etc.
• Desired hard copy and/or electronic Mental Health and Addiction resources for
children, youth, and families

After-Hours Crisis Support Services for Caregivers Feb 2015

Child Adolescent and Family Mental Health
After-Hours Crisis Support Services for Caregivers Feb 2015
Achok Elnour has joined the After-Hours Crisis Support Services for Caregivers team. Along with other multi-disciplinary team members, Achok will be available to support caregivers beyond regular business hours Mondays through Fridays, weekends and Holidays (24 hours). This support is available to all caregivers across the province with exception of Calgary and the surrounding area. After-Hours Crisis Support Services for Caregivers has been developed in partnership between CFS and CASA to
provide mental health and/or addiction support for children, youth, and their families (kinship, foster, adoptive, permanent placement, and biological). Therapists will be available by phone and are not intended to go out to attend to emergencies (as these calls are directed to the Mobile Response Team, MRT). Calls for this service may come through CFS Crisis Services, although caregivers may also call directly at (587) 982-CASA or alternatively (587) 982-2272. Additionally, any non-urgent questions, requests for mental health resources or supports for infants, children, adults and/or families can be sent to crisissupport@casaservices.org.
Please just be advised that e-mail questions/queries should not contain personal/identifying information. CASA After-Hours Crisis Support staff may be helpful in situations such as:
Navigation of Mental Health and/or Addictions systems and services across Alberta
relieving the immediate concerns of the caregivers through brief, solution-focused mental health
interventions via telephone, improving the ability caregiver(s) to manage the child and their relationship, through discussing various bio-psycho-social strategies, providing individual or group information to caregivers (via workshops, electronic information, etc.)
on mental health and/or addictions issues. Increasing the capacity of the Crisis Service Team to respond to mental health concerns. Crisis Assessors and therapists will be able to consult one another in realtime, thereby improving their ability to support caregivers in crisis situations.

Outcomes Based Service Delivery Readiness Assessment Tool 2012

This Readiness Assessment Tool 2012 was developed, based on information from: “lessons learned”, in-depth consultations with Regions and Agencies, literature review and OBSD documents. Representatives from contracted agencies, Child and Family Service Authorities (CFSAs) and the Department have contributed significantly to its development. The Tool is intended to facilitate transition to OBSD and can be used by a range of stakeholders. It is designed to bring evidence-informed approaches into planning and implementation.