Presentation Materials ALIGN Group Care Global Symposium, Edmonton, Alberta February 7- 8, 2019

Ideology, Evidence and the Great Residential Group Care Debate: Whose Keeping Score? ALIGN Group Care Symposium 2019 James P. Anglin Professor Emeritus School of Child and Youth Care University of Victoria

What Works: Lessons learned from implementing, sustaining, and evaluating the CARE Model ALIGN Group Care Symposium 2019 Martha Holden Cornell University

A Tailored Approach to Implementing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Youth Residential Facilities: Lessons Learned from Wolverine Human Services’ Journey ALIGN Group Care Symposium 2019 Cara C. Lewis, PhD Associate Investigator, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute Co-Founding Editor-in Chief of SIRC Journal

It’s Time for Innovation: Care Planning and the Hoax of Participation and Voice ALIGN Group Care Symposium 2019 Dr. Kiaras Gharabaghi Director, School of Child & Youth Care Ryerson University Toronto, Canada

Update PDD Program Review Secretariat Feb 13, 2019

Communication from Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Program Review Secretariat Feb 13, 2019

As you may know, the PDD Review Panel undertook an engagement this fall and winter. The panel received thoughtful input from Albertans across the province, including self-advocates, individuals receiving PDD services, family members, service providers, advocacy groups and community disability workers and other interested Albertans.

The following is a summary of participation for the initial engagement period:

  • 1,115 people attended community conversation sessions in St. Paul, Grande Prairie, Fort McMurray, Red Deer, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Calgary and Edmonton
  • 1,163 people completed an online questionnaire
  • 10 community organizations submitted input from self-facilitated discussions and 13 organizations gave presentations to the panel
  • 84 individuals made submissions either in writing, video or art formats

The panel is currently reviewing and analyzing all of the feedback and submissions that were received. Once that is completed, they will provide an initial report to the Minister of Community and Social Services on what they heard during the engagement period. The panel will then submit a final report to the Minister that includes specific and actionable recommendations.

Stay tuned for further updates as the panel’s work continues.

Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Program Review Secretariat

See Related Posts

CanFASD Shares Top FASD Articles of 2018

CanFASD staff, researchers, and Family Advisory Committee members worked together in selecting certain articles to highlight some of the work that has been published over the last year in the field of FASD. Over 460 papers published on FASD in 2018 were narrowed down to a final list of 35 that focus on CanFASD’s areas of emphasis in FASD prevention, intervention, diagnosis, social justice, child welfare, and family collaboration. Additional consideration for what constituted the “top” articles included: generalizability to Canadians, influence on practice or policy, novelty, scientific rigour, and media attention. For a PDF version of the final document please click here: Top Articles of 2018 FINAL.

Have Your Say! Pepper Spray and Segregation in Youth Justice Facilities

Pepper Spray and Segregation in Youth Justice Facilities

Child & Youth Advocate is currently taking an in-depth look at the use of pepper spray and segregation in youth justice facilities, and will be providing advice to the Government of Alberta based on our findings.

They’re currently engaging young people and stakeholders across Alberta to share their experiences and/or perspectives on this issue. They’ll be hosting three community conversations this February to gather input that will help shape our recommendations to improve the lives of some of Alberta’s most vulnerable young people:

Monday, February 11 – Edmonton

Friday, February 22  – Calgary

Monday, February 25 – Grande Prairie 

They want to hear your thoughts! If you’re interested in participating in one of these conversations, or would like to arrange a time to speak with us individually, please call our office at 1.800.661.3446 or email

CIAFV Membership Survey

AndersonDraper Consulting Inc. has been contracted to undertake an evaluation of Community Initiatives Against Family Violence (CIAFV). They are asking members of CIAFV for feedback. The information you share will be used to improve CIAFV and report on the strategic goals. Please note your participation is voluntary and responses will be summarized. Individual responses will not be shared, but some statements may be used as quotes to illustrate common themes.This should take about 10 minutes to complete. To thank you for your time, you can enter a draw for one of three $10.00 Tim Hortons gift cards (your contact information will not be associated with your survey results).

If you have any questions about this survey, please contact the Evaluator, at 780-680-4195 or send an email to

FAF Software Updates

Take a look at their  newly revised  factsheet. that is easy to share, and highlights FAF’s many benefits:

  • Family Centric
  • Culturally Sensitive
  • Research Validated
  • Linked, Guided Service Planning
  • Aligns with Protective Factors

Through our clients, FAF Software has reached more than 40,000 children and families, and we’re pleased to report a 100% client renewal rate for 2018. Take a closer look at the factsheet.

The FAF Team attended a Trauma-Informed Care Training recently offered by Strategies 2.0 , which provides no-cost resources to the family strengthening field. The objectives of the full-day course were 1) to define trauma 2) to describe trauma’s impact on development and well-being and 3) to identify strategies for responding to trauma and resisting re-traumatization.

Strategies 2.0 and FAF Software are both part of the peer-to-peer network within Children’s Bureau with missions to help other organizations help families. Learn more about Strategies 2.0 offerings.

First Peoples Child & Family Review Releases Audio-Visual Edition.

The First Peoples Child & Family Review released their first-ever audio-visual edition. This edition highlights the importance of oral and visual knowledge transmission for Indigenous people. This issue includes a Jordan’s Principle PSA in American Sign Language, some wonderful artwork by Ross Drive Public School Students, and much more!

Have a Heart Day February 14, 2019

Have a Heart Day is a child and youth-led reconciliation event that brings together caring Canadians to help ensure First Nations children have the services they need to grow up safely at home, get a good education, be healthy, and be proud of who they are. Visit the First Nations Child & Family Caring Society for resources.

Position Paper Calling for an Integrated Approach to Early Childhood Development.

First 2000 Days Network in Calgary link, align and leverage work to promote the importance of Early Childhood Development (ages 0 to 5). They’ve launched an engagement campaign ahead of the provincial election to try and get this issue in front of candidates

The evidence is clear: What happens from the ages of 0 to 5 can alter the course of a person’s life. Let’s not waste an opportunity to invest in this most powerful and formative time. Together, we can make sure that every Alberta child has the opportunity to develop to their fullest potential.

The First 2000 Days has released a position paper calling for an integrated approach to Early Childhood Development. To help spread this call, we’ve created a campaign to put ECD on the policy agenda for the 2019 Provincial election.

For this initiative to be successful, we want as many candidates, community and sector leaders, friends and colleagues to understand that ECD matters! You are invited to use one or all of the resources below to tell people that investing in the Early Years is important to you.

Download the Q-Cards series.

What is your party’s plan to invest
in Early Childhood Development?

How does your party plan to address and improve mental health amongst children and their primary caregivers?

What is your party’s plan to end child poverty?

How will your party support children in the early years to improve school readiness?

Edmonton Mayor to Make A Proclamation for #mentoringmont Jan 17th

Just a quick FYI that Danisha at BGCBBBS Edmonton has arranged for the Mayor Edmonton to make a proclamation for #mentoringmonth as well as the High Level Bridge will be lit for International Day of Mentoring on Thursday (Jan 17th). This is usually accompanied by social media from the city recognizing the aforementioned by the city.

If you have any further questions or opportunities, please let me know 🙂 Is there an opportunity to share on your social media or interdepartmental newsletter?

Please also check out some of the fantastic content we have been sharing this month on our AMP Social media and please give a like, retweet, share 🙂

Thank you!

Michael Janz | Partner Engagement Manager

780-288-9866 direct  |

Alberta Mentoring Partnership  |

9425 109A Avenue, Edmonton AB T5H 1G1

Integrated Hubs Capacity & Readiness and Plan & Prepare Application Deadline Monday, January 28th

Update January 2018
Integrated Hubs: Webinar and Q&A Available
As a reminder, the Integrated Hubs application information session webinar is available on the website , in addition here is a copy of the Question and Answers from the webinar. Please feel free to forward these resources to colleagues who may not have been able to attend.

The deadline for both applications (Capacity & Readiness and Plan & Prepare) is on Monday, January 28th at 4pm MST. If there are any further questions, please don’t hesitate to be in touch with myself, Val Salt or Kyla Brown (cc’d here). Tel: 587-354-4803

PolicyWise for Children & Families is very pleased to share a second opportunity to support the implementation of Community-based Mental Health Service Hubs for Youth (Integrated Hubs) in Alberta. This opportunity is part of Valuing Mental Health.Integrated Hubs aim to minimize the service gap between child and adult services by providing a youth-oriented ‘one-stop-shop’ for youth to access mental health care as early as possible. Integrated Hubs use a collaborative and integrated care model to improve service access and reduce the personal and public health costs of untreated youth mental health concerns. As Integrated Hubs are community-based, they will be flexible and adaptable to each community’s social, cultural, and health needs.

CSS PDD Review – January 2, 2019

CSS PDD Review January 2, 2019
Brief overviews of the results of engagement sessions for the Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) review. Each report includes information on the number of participants and key themes or issues heard by the appointed review panel during each session.


AHS Caregiver Education Series for the Edmonton Zone

AHS Caregiver Education Series

Mental Health Literacy Series (Videos)
Caregiver Education Series
Parenting Education and Reflection (P.E.A.R) Groups
Professional Development Series

 Reduce Stigma. Receive Information. Reflect on Strategies.
The Children, Youth & Families-Addiction and Mental Health (AHS) and Regional Collaborative Service Delivery (RCSD) are pleased to continue to provide the Caregiver Education Series. These free 90 minute sessions are intended to provide parents, caregivers, teachers, and community members with basic level information regarding addiction and mental health challenges that can and do affect children and youth.

Who can attend:Presentations are hosted in schools but are open to all adults in the community. Note that some sessions focus on topics relating to elementary school children while others apply mainly to adolescents. Unless specified, sessions are for an adult audience; however some sessions welcome youth (ages 12+) to attend with their parent/caregiver.

Registration: All current sessions can be found at Please select the session that is of interest to you. Multiple dates, times and locations are offered per topic however the content material presented is the same in each session. Sessions are hosted by individual schools, but all adults are welcome to attend

If you have any questions please contact us at or call 780-415-0074.


Indigenous Studies INST 511: Spring Term: April 29, 2019 – July 26, 2019 Athabasca University

Indigenous Studies INST 511:

Indigenous Knowledge and Education

University Graduate Course

Spring Term: April 29, 2019 – July 26, 2019

This course will prepare the student to address Indigenous pedagogy and the construction of meaningful and accurate educational lessons for and about Indigenous peoples, including the Blackfoot, the Cree, the Metis and the Dene Tha. Indigenous peoples have always had their own philosophies, understandings, teachings, and educational goals. The same processes through which philosophy was/is taught would be used to teach Indigenous citizens arts, politics, laws, and language. Storytelling, sharing circles, organized meetings, and ongoing training in the home through experiential learning were and are the pedagogic vehicles used to teach and transfer knowledge.

  • Requirement: Undergraduate/University degree
  • For syllabi, click on the link:
  • Course fee: $1549.00(CDN)

  • $100.00  non-program application fee
  • You do not have to be in a program to take this course
  • If you are in a program, the course would need to be evaluated by the Institution to which you are applied/applying to, to determine if it may be applicable toward your program

Contact Ivy until April 9th to register for the course

Foundations of Caregiver Support Evaluation Survey

Thank you for taking part in the Foundations of Caregiver Support training recently.  We are hoping to gain feedback from your experience by collecting evaluations.  Below are links to surveys for each module of training one through five.  Please take a moment to complete the applicable survey(s).  If you have taken more than one training module, please complete the survey for each module you have taken.  Each survey only takes approx. 2 minutes and the information collected is valuable for ALIGN and Children’s Services to track their training initiatives.  If you have any questions, please contact our office.  Thank you and have a wonderful day!

Please Complete Survey

Module 1 Evaluation

Module 2 Evaluation

Module 3 Evaluation F

Module 4 Evaluation

Module 5 Evaluation

Revisions Enhancement Act Policy Manual December 14, 2018

Revisions Enhancement Act Policy Manual December 14, 2018. Ideally, regular policy releases and updates to the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act Policy Manual will occur two times a year; however, there are times when circumstances may require a more immediate policy release.  This is a special policy release that represents the significant work completed in the field to build, pilot, and implement the Practice Strategies for Lifelong Connections (PSLLC).

The Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act Policy Manual policy manual describes the policy, purpose and procedure that guide our work with children, youth and families. On an ongoing basis we ensure that policy is aligned with current practice approaches and tools. We often get requests from the field, recommendations and direction to update or create new policy.  We are attempting to establish a clear and timely policy cycle to:

  • Ensure we are addressing the specific needs of service delivery in an organized and thoughtful manner
  • Build in adequate consultation and approval time and process
  • Support communication and understanding of policy changes



STEP 2019 Information Sessions

STEP grants provide eligible employers with a $7 per hour wage subsidy to hire students into summer jobs. You can grow your business while providing a student with valuable work experience and transferable skills.

You will learn about:

  • employer eligibility criteria
  • student eligibility
  • position requirements
  • application and reimbursement processes

A live Question and Answer Session will hollow the presentation.

Who should attend:

  • small businesses (1-49 employees)
  • non-profit organizations, public libraries
  • municipalities, First Nations, Métis Settlements
  • school boards
  • publicly-funded post-secondary institutions

Plan to attend one of five webinars offered from December 18, 2018 to January 7, 2019

Dec 18, 2018 2 PM When it’s time, join the meeting
Dec 20, 2018 10 AM When it’s time, join the meeting
Jan 3, 2019 10 AM When it’s time, join the meeting
Jan 4, 2019 10 AM When it’s time, join the meeting
Jan 7, 2019 2 PM When it’s time, join the meeting


OHS Staff Safety Initiative Update

Correspondence to ALIGN from Marika Giesen | Executive Director, Service Delivery Improvement and Integration December 12, 2018

Rhonda and Andrea, thanks for the good discussion on Monday re: moving forward, with the help of a Health & Safety Association, on the social services staff safety initiative. As mentioned, we’ve pulled together some high-level notes below to support your discussions/communications with your respective membership.  I hope this is helpful. If you have questions/comments, let me know.Watch for an update early in the new year.

–          Over the past several months, ALIGN and ACDS have been meeting with government representatives from Labour, Community and Social Services (CSS) and Children’s Services to discuss shared concerns and collaborative strategies related to the safety of staff in the social services sector

–          As a result of these discussions, government will be providing funding to secure the services of a Health and Safety Association (HSA) to develop a variety of resources focused specifically on improving safety for staff in our sector

–          We want to be clear that this is not about establishing a sector HSA that members pay into; rather, to use the expertise of an HSA to develop sector-specific resources for our association(s) and its members

–          These resources will focus on three key areas:

o   Awareness: through provincial and agency-level activities, staff at different levels will be aware of their respective roles and responsibilities regarding safety in the workplace;

o   Tools: creating a variety of common tools and templates (e.g., hazard assessments) that take into account the unique environment our social services staff  work in; and,

o   Training: creating a variety of training resources and identifying training opportunities for all staff that will support their ability to identify and respond to safety issues in the workplace.

–          We have been clear that whatever comes from this work, it cannot introduce additional costs for agencies and it must be informed by and developed in consultation with our sector members

–          We will have more to share in the New Year when the HSA is selected and begins its work, and we hope you will be willing to work with us as we create these important resources


New OHS Website: Work site health and safety committees and representatives
Applying for a joint work site health and safety committee
HSC HS Rep Approval Self-Evaluation Tool pdf
ALIGN & Bill 30 Occupational Health and Safety Act


Foundations of Caregiver Support (FCS) Update

Update from ALIGN E.D. December 12, 2018

This project has taken a life of its own.  ALIGN has provided 3 train the trainer sessions over the last 6 months.  We have trained over 150 people to train the FCS modules.  To date there have been a total of 685 staff and 200 agency caregivers trained that we know of.  We believe that many of the contract foster care programs are working on training their caregivers over the next few months.  Thank you for the support and uptake in doing this work.  We ask that you report who has been trained in your agencies to us so that in June we can report on the total numbers.

We are moving forward with the assumption that the trainers are making plans within their own agencies to train staff. Our offer of assistance stands, especially if you need an indigenous trainer.  Please email or call Nicole or 780.232.9199.

We have decided not to offer ALIGN session in January and February.  Our contract goes until June and the funding is tight.  We hope to run another session for whoever needs it later in the spring.  If you are struggling getting the training in, or need help please call Nicole ad we want to ensure everyone has the opportunity to get it done.  If we need to ask for more funding we will but need to know the need by March.

See more on ALIGN and Foundations of Caregiver Support (FCS) 
ALIGN Presents Foundations of Caregiver Support 101 2018 – 2019 Dates/Locations

Bill 30 Update: Request for Clarity on the Requirements for Work Site Safety & Care Worker Focused Inspections

ALIGN E.D. Update December 12, 2018

Bill 30 and its requirements have been challenging for everyone.  We have asked for some clarity on the requirements for work site and safety committees and representatives.  Specific to your concerns about employers with multiple work sites, the approvals process is outlined on the webpage (bottom) or I will post on our website.  If there are still questions please send them to me and I will get assistance for you.

Yesterday ALIGN and ACDS met with the Ministry of Labor regarding the current Care Worker Focused inspections.  We clearly outlined some of the concerns we have heard including the inconsistencies, threats of fines, questions about placements, etc.  We were able to have them stop/complete the inspection process.  Only those that are currently open will be followed up on and there will be no more in this round.   We are told that there is a group of inspectors that have been assigned to this sector.  In light of that, ACDS, ALIGN and the 2 ministries have offered to provide the inspectors some insight into the sector, how it works and who the clients are.  We hope to do that in January and then we expect to have a debrief session on this current round of inspections later in February.

New OHS Website: Work site health and safety committees and representatives
Applying for a joint work site health and safety committee
HSC HS Rep Approval Self-Evaluation Tool pdf 

See More ALIGN Correspondence Re: Bill 30

Update: ALIGN Meets with Minister Larivee at the Legislature Re: Sector Financial Issues

Update: December 12, 2018

Message from ALIGN E.D.

The Board of Directors and I met with the Minister of Children Services Danielle Larivee last week.  Our meeting was a result of the letter we sent to the Premier. In our discussion we reviewed who we are, how many people we represent and the current financial issues we are facing.   According to the Boland report we are back up to a 47% turnover rate, agencies are reporting difficulty in hiring and ALIGN has had an unprecedented number of jobs posted on our website.  Interestingly as I reviewed our history for the meeting we are in a 6 year wave again.  It seems that every 6 years we are in this predicament.

We were able to state that in each of those times we were able to develop some sort of business relationship committee which help everyone understand the issues and collaboratively work on them, we also have been able to work on flexibility in contracts and in some cases injections of short term funds as a stop gap. At this time, there is a promise of some funding to cover the paid days off vacation requirements in Bill 17, and there is some discussion of support for the costs of Bill 30.  The Minister also assures us she is trying to request increased funding in the 2019/20 budget, with a special emphasis on the group care sector.

We emphasized that the added expectations over the past few years, and in the next few years with the Stronger Safer Tomorrow recommendations in all service delivery areas there is a need to fund those as we cannot sustain the good practice with just minor adjustments.  We stressed that group care, contact foster care and kinship care must have attention soon.  We would like to see a clear procurement plan, and contracts that includes the costs of the new legislation, regular cost of living increases, and a realistic cost for operating.  Generally speaking group care was last procured in 2006 and contract foster care in 2008.

We continue to advocate on your behalf, if you are really struggling you need to make your challenges known to your contract managers.  If you are beginning to close programs can please let me know.  I have monthly meetings with the policy and program division of the Ministry and we want to make sure they are aware of the challenges within the sector.

Board members of ALIGN Association met with Minister Larivee at the Legislature on Dec 4, 2018. Not all of the board members were able to be in attendance but those that were had an opportunity along with ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough to  discuss fiscal challenges in the sector. We appreciated this opportunity for dialogue and look forward to ongoing input and discussions moving forward.

Jeff Hansen, Aaron Hachkowski, Margaret Martin, Soraya Saliba, Rhonda Barraclough, Hazel Bergen, Bruce Armson, Pauline Smale, Robecca Chahine  (Not able to attend: Cheryl Whiskeyjack, Beverly Keeshig-Soonias, Bruce Rafuse, Julie Mann- Johnson)

FSCD Members: PDD Review Panel Update & Call for Submissions Dec 10, 2018

Please take a minute and review  Alberta Council of Disability Services (ACDS) Submission to Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Program Review Panel December 3, 2018. This submission is an excellent and thorough overview of key points for consideration. ALIGN Association encourage any FSCD members to also send in a submission if you are able to do so.

Rhonda Barraclough, ALIGN E.D. will be contacting Andrea Hesse the CEO from ACDS  to consider jointly meeting with the advocate to discuss the services to people with disabilities  and service providers.

More information is available at  Advocate’s for Persons with Disabilities (

Letter to ALIGN Association from Alberta’s Advocate’s for Persons with Disabilities Tony Flores November 19, 2018

This PDD Program Review Discussion Guide Fall 2018 is being used to assist in developing input to the panel.

ALIGN & Sector Alberta Human Services Updates Dec 7, 2018

This newsletter for Alberta Human Service Agencies is packed with news and resources on Indigenous initiative, Alberta Government news and updates, Surveys, Reports, Training and more!

Christmas Bureau Seeking Volunteers with Data Entry Experience/Social Work Background

Have  data entry experience a social work background ? We are looking for volunteer intake workers and data entry people to help with our Walk-In Days Dec 20 & 21.

Whether you’re a student, retired social worker or working in the field we need you!

If you can lend a hand and help us bring JOY to our Edmonton neighbors please contact Lee @ 780.414.7682 for more information.

Alberta Mental Health Services Protection Act Updates Nov 2018

Mental Health Services Protection Act Technical Briefing November 2018

QA Mental Health Services Protection November 2018

Fact Sheet Mental Health Services Protection November 2018

Bill 30: Mental Health Services Protection Act has been introduced to put standards in place to ensure residential treatment facilities are licensed and health service providers are appropriately trained and regulated.

Creating new regulations and standards for service providers and treatment facilities supports one of the key actions recommended in Valuing Mental Health: Next Steps and was informed by input received during public engagement activities held last summer.

Protecting Albertans through mental health support (Nov. 27, 2018)

See ALIGN All Updates & ALIGN Communications Re: Bill 30

New Alberta Health Services Caregiver Education for the Edmonton Zone Website & Caregiver Education Series

New Alberta Health Services Caregiver Education for the Edmonton Zone Website & Caregiver Education Series
Mission: To promote, preserve and restore the wellness of children, youth, and families through quality addiction and mental health services that are accessible and sustainable.
The Education Team of Children, Youth and Families – Addiction and Mental Health – Edmonton Zone (Alberta Health Services) provides parents, caregivers and community members with free education sessions to increase awareness of the mental health challenges that children and adolescents may experience. The Caregiver Education Series focuses on the 3 R’s: reduce stigma, receive information, and reflect on strategies. Each session provides evidence-based research, common challenges faced by children and youth, possible treatment options, supportive strategies, and information/resources for further support.

CBC News Ottawa could be facing human rights tribunal hearing to settle First Nations child welfare compensation Dec 5, 2018

CBC News Ottawa could be facing human rights tribunal hearing to settle First Nations child welfare compensation Dec 5, 2018
Last Friday, hours after Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott announced upcoming legislation on Indigenous child welfare, Justice Canada lawyer Robert Frater wrote the tribunal to secure hearing dates for possible arguments on the compensation issue….

Philpott says Indigenous child services legislation can be a ‘clarion call’ Times Columnist Dec 5, 2018

Philpott says Indigenous child services legislation can be a ‘clarion call’ Times Columnist Dec 5, 2018
OTTAWA — Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott says the federal government’s proposed legislation on Indigenous child services can be a clarion call across Canada to stop scooping children from families needlessly.

Speaking at a gathering of Assembly of First Nations chiefs at an Ottawa hotel Wednesday, Philpott said families should not be torn apart because they are poor or because parents have health problems…

New Legal Supports for Sexual Violence Survivors

Free legal advice is being provided to survivors of sexual violence to help on their path to healing and support greater access to the justice system.

The three-year pilot program is being rolled out in municipalities served by the Elizabeth Fry Society, including Edmonton, Red Deer, Stony Plain, Morinville, St. Albert, Sherwood Park, Fort Saskatchewan, Ponoka, Camrose, Wetaskiwin, and a number of Indigenous communities.

The project is open to adult survivors of all genders who have experienced sexual violence in Alberta, regardless of how much time has passed since the incident.

Survivors of sexual violence wishing to learn more about the program can email or call 780-784-2213.

Alberta Supports – Centralized Government Services Support Contact

Alberta Supports is a Government of Alberta centralized point of contact for Albertans seeking information on employment, disability, financial, healthcare, housing and homelessness, childcare, seniors, guardianship and trusteeship, and abuse and bullying prevention services and programs. Visit an Alberta Supports Centre (see locations here) or visit  Alberta Supports Online to get help  accessing more than 30 programs and 120 community services1-877-644-9992 toll-free province-wide 1-800-232-7215  TTY province-wide, ask to speak to Alberta Supports Email general inquiries  

Are You Interested in Being A Nonprofit Rep. on the ANVSI Leaders Council?

The Alberta Nonprofit Voluntary Sector Initiative (ANVSI) Leaders’ Council is comprised of six leadership representatives from the nonprofit/voluntary sector and four Deputy Minister representatives from Alberta Government ministries that have the most frequent and broad interaction with the sector.

Pat Letizia (Alberta Ecotrust Foundation) and I (ECVO) are currently the only two nonprofit/voluntary sector representatives due to recent retirements and job changes.  Consequently, we need to find four nonprofit/voluntary representatives to join us.

The ANVSI Leaders’ Council Nonprofit Voluntary Sector Recruitment Posting provides more information about ANVSI, the Leaders’ Council and a little bit about the kind of nonprofit/voluntary sector leaders we’re looking for.

If you’re interested, please send your resume or CV along with a cover letter to by December 12, 2018.

Indigenous Child and Family Services Legislation

Government of Canada, with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation leaders, announce co-developed legislation will be introduced on Indigenous child and family services in early 2019.

Indigenous children represent 52.2% of children in foster care in private homes in Canada. The over-representation of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation children in the child welfare system is a humanitarian crisis. Indigenous children who have been in care face greater risks of adverse health outcomes, violence and incarceration.

Legislation is an important step toward more comprehensive reform. This announcement is the culmination of intensive engagements throughout this year which focused on identifying ways to reduce the number of Indigenous children in care. Currently, Indigenous families are bound by rules and systems that are not reflective of their cultures and identities. The goal of the proposed legislation is to change that. It aims to support Indigenous families to raise their children within their homelands and nations as well as increase efforts to prevent child apprehension where possible and safe to do so….

Spirit Bear Announces the Release of Second Children’s Book, Fishing for Knowledge, Catching Dreams.

Spirit Bear is thrilled to announce the release of his second children’s book, Fishing for Knowledge, Catching Dreams. Written by Cindy Blackstock and beautifully illustrated by Michif artist Amanda Strong (, Spirit Bear’s new adventure is available for $15 + tax and shipping. Please contact or call 613.230.5885 for order information

Indigenous Youth & Community Futures Fund Application Open. Apply by February 11, 2019.

Laidlaw’s Indigenous Youth and Communities Futures Fund is for Indigenous youth-led groups to develop and lead projects where they are immersed in their lands, languages, and cultures; participate in everyday acts of resurgence, reclamation and wellbeing; build relationships within and across Indigenous communities; and learn about and define for themselves what reconciliation means.

Eligibility: This call is open to Indigenous youth-led groups that are based in traditional territories spanning Ontario. A youth-led group generally consists of young people between the ages of 14 to 29. However, we also welcome groups with younger members or adult allies, community helpers, Elders, and Knowledge Keepers playing supportive roles as long as young people, who self identify as Indigenous Peoples, come up with the project idea and lead the project.

You can apply for up to $30,000 for small-scale projects that can last between 6 to 12 months.

Federal Finance Minister released the Fall Economic Statement 2018

Federal Finance Minister released the Fall Economic Statement 2018


Better Public Policy Through Cooperation
To make the most of what charities have to offer, Canada needs a regulatory environment that respects and encourages the full participation of charities in public policy dialogue and development.

A Stronger Role for Charities in Developing Public Policy
Recognizing the important contributions that charities make to public life and public policy in Canada, the Government has committed to allow charities to do their work on behalf of Canadians free from political harassment, with clearer rules governing political activity. To this end, the Government announced in August 2018 that it would amend the Income Tax Act to remove the limits on political activities, allowing charities to participate fully in public policy development. Canadians provided feedback on draft legislative proposals, and legislation to implement these measures was introduced on October 29, 2018 as part of the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2.

A Permanent Advisory Committee on the Charitable Sector
The Government is committed to engaging in a meaningful dialogue with charities, and ensuring that the regulatory environment in which they operate is appropriate and supports the important work they do. In response to the recommendations of the Consultation Panel on the Political Activities of Charities, as well as the Social Innovation and Social Finance Strategy Co-Creation Steering Group, the Government is establishing a permanent Advisory Committee on the Charitable Sector. Led by the Canada Revenue Agency, the Advisory Committee will be made up of stakeholders from the charitable sector, and will provide advice to the Government on important issues facing charities on an ongoing basis. The Government is providing $4.6 million in new funding over the 2018–19 to 2023–24 period for the Advisory Committee to strengthen the relationship between government and this important sector.

A New Tool to Help Solve Big Challenges: The Social Finance Fund
Though Canada is a prosperous country, many of our communities still face persistent and complex social challenges that make it difficult for some individuals—including Indigenous Peoples, seniors, youth, immigrants, persons with disabilities, members of LGBTQ2+ communities and women fleeing violence—to succeed and reach their full potential…

New Government Report Released: Profiling the Nonprofit Sector in Alberta

Profiling the Nonprofit/Voluntary Sector in Alberta | An Alberta Non-profit/Voluntary Sector Initiative Discussion Paper On the Value and Contributions of the Nonprofit/Voluntary Sector October 2018
This paper provides a high-level summary of the Nonprofit/Voluntary Sector (NPVS) in Alberta, how it does its work, and the impact its work has on the cultural, economic, social and political fabric of the province. This paper is meant to be a starting point for conversations about the role of the NPVS in Alberta, and examines the relationship between government and sector, now and in the future…Read the full report →

Mental Health Service Hubs for Youth (Integrated Hubs) Alberta

PolicyWise for Children & Families is very pleased to share a second opportunity to support the implementation of Community-based Mental Health Service Hubs for Youth (Integrated Hubs) in Alberta. This opportunity is part of Valuing Mental Health.

Integrated Hubs aim to minimize the service gap between child and adult services by providing a youth-oriented ‘one-stop-shop’ for youth to access mental health care as early as possible. Integrated Hubs use a collaborative and integrated care model to improve service access and reduce the personal and public health costs of untreated youth mental health concerns. As Integrated Hubs are community-based, they will be flexible and adaptable to each community’s social, cultural, and health needs.

Introductory Letter to ALIGN from Tony Flores Advocate for Persons With Disabilities

November 19, 2018

My role and responsibilities reflect the input of more than 1900 Albertans and key stakeholders…Read Full

Message from Deputy Minister Bouwsema Re Basic Maintenance Allowance Increase May 19, 2018

Message to ALIGN Association  from Deputy Minister Bouwsema Office of the Deputy Minister Children’s Services Re Basic Maintenance Allowance May 19, 2018

The basic maintenance per diem compensation rate has increase by 2 percent retro-active to April 1, 2018. See chart of basic maintenance change for each age. View Table: Changes to Alberta Basic Maintenance May 15, 2018

Update to Family Statutes Amendment Act, 2018

New law to better support and protect families

The Alberta government is working to modernize family law in the province to better support unmarried partners and protect children with disabilities.

If passed, the Family Statutes Amendment Act, 2018 would make it easier for unmarried partners to divide their property if their relationship breaks down. It would also clarify in the legislation that applications for child support can be made for all adult children with disabilities – regardless of the marital status of their parents...

Alberta is the First Province to Implement Jordan’s Principle

Alberta Government Release May 15, 2018

Better supports for First Nations children
Alberta is the first province to implement Jordan’s Principle, which will help First Nations children access the services they need, when they need them.

The all-party Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention identified full implementation of Jordan’s Principle in Alberta as one of its 26 recommendations. Signing the MOU addresses one of 16 immediate actions set out in A Stronger, Safer Tomorrow, Alberta’s four-year public action plan to respond to the panel’s recommendations to improve the child intervention system and strengthen support for children and families… Read Full Release


Order your Boland Survey Report to Make Informed Decisions Salary and HR Practices.

The Boland Survey is the only comprehensive source of nonprofit sector compensation data and includes salary tables (annual and hourly) categorized by organizational size, and analysis on HR practices. Organizations that completed the 2018 survey are eligible to purchase the comprehensive report. If your organization did not participate, you may still be eligible to purchase the report or a custom cut analysis. For information on purchasing either the report or custom cut, please email

If Passed Bill 26 Will Increase Core and Supplementary Benefits for AISH January 1, 2019

Bill 26 An Act to Combat Poverty and Fight for Albertans with Disabilities has been introduced to legislation. If passed it would increase core and supplementary benefits for AISH, going up each year to keep up with inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index. The bill increases the maximum monthly core benefit rate for a single person covered by AISH to $1,685 from $1,588. If passed, Bill 26 would take effect Jan. 1, 2019. The legislation would mark the first increase to AISH benefits since 2012. The legislation would increase savings limits to match general eligibility criteria for AISH.

See Voices of Albertans announcement and information overview on 

The province is working to ensure all Albertans can benefit from the economic recovery by ensuring people with disabilities or low income Albertans have stable, predictable supports. Alberta Government Release Helping the economic recovery reach all Albertans November 8, 2018

Highlights – Imagine Canada Early Alerts November 2018

Included in Bill C-86, which would implement portions of the 2018 federal budget, are provisions that would significantly change how charities’ public policy and advocacy activities are regulated. These changes — including the removal of the 10% limit on “political activities” — are in line with recommendations made by Imagine Canada and other sector organizations

The Department of Finance has highlighted the fact that charities play a valuable role in society and announced how the proposed legislation will enable charities to reach their full potential and pursue their charitable purposes, as well as help to inform public debate and the creation of public policy.Proposed Income Tax Act amendments

Pay Equity LegislationNew legislation has been introduced for equal pay. A number of other key measures are included in this legislation that aim to advance gender equality like the new pay equity legislation, additional weeks of parental benefits in a new Employment Insurance Parental Sharing Benefit, legislation to promote gender budgeting and establishment of the Department for Women and Gender Equality.

The Senate Special Committee studying the charitable sector is scheduled to meet again on Monday, November 5.

The Aboriginal Peoples Committee continues its study on the new relationship between Canada and First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.

Public Safety Canada released the Correctional Investigator’s 2017-18 Annual Report that includes recommendations to improve education, access to information, more transparency, and to meet Indigenous needs in correctional services.

The Finance Committee began its review of Bill C-86, the Budget Implementation Act, 2018, No. 2. The committee discussed how the proposed amendments to the Income Tax Act will affect charities, the confusion around the definition of non-partisan political activities, what constitutes direct or indirect support, and how organizations today are fearful that advocacy work could cause them to lose their charitable status..You can watch the full meeting here. The next meeting to review this legislation is scheduled for Monday, November 5 at 3:30pm.

See Full Newsletter Here

PDD Program Review – Discussion Guide and Review Panel Presentation Invitations

PDD Program Review – Discussion Guide and Review Panel Presentation Invitations Update November 2, 2018|

To Rhonda Barraclough ALIGN Association E.D.
From Dorothy Badry, Dick Sobsey, Ann Nicol Co-Chairpersons’- PDD Review Panel

As you may be aware, the Minister of Community and Social Services has appointed a community-led panel to oversee the review of the Persons with Development Disabilities (PDD) program.  The review panel will be seeking input from Albertans with developmental disabilities, their families and guardians and others involved in supporting their participation in the community about how PDD can support the personal choices, independence, priorities and needs of those who receive services through PDD.

The panel is focused on five topic areas in scope of the review:

· access to services and supports to meet individual needs and goals;

· a service delivery system that: responds to the needs of individuals and families;provides clear lines of accountability and oversight;

· training and supports to enable a skilled and well-trained workforce; and

· engagement with the disability community (i.e. individuals, families, guardians, service providers and workforce) at both the system and individual levels to provide clarity of purpose and outcomes.

In addition to a series of Community Conversation sessions being held throughout the province, there will be opportunities for organizations such as yours to make presentations to the PDD program review panel.  This PDD Program Review Discussion Guide Fall 2018 is being used to assist in developing input to the panel.

If you are interested in presenting to the review panel, please contact the PDD Review Secretariat at to:

·  confirm your interest in presenting to the review panel; and

·  select your preferred city/date to present

The scheduled dates and times to present to the review panel are:

·   Thursday, November 29, 2018 – CALGARY (between 1:00 – 4:45 p.m.)

·   Thursday, December 6, 2018 – EDMONTON (between 1:00 – 4:45 p.m.)

Presenters can expect to have 30 minutes to share information with the review panel and 15 minutes for questions and answers.

Please confirm your interest by Friday, November 16, 2018. You will then be advised of the specific time allotted for your presentation.

Community engagement tool kits are being shared with other community organizations that will have the option of hosting their own facilitated discussions to gather and share feedback for the PDD review panel.

To learn more about the review panel members and the various ways of providing input to the review panel, please visit


Dorothy Badry, Co-Chair       PDD Review Panel

Dick Sobsey, Co-Chair            PDD Review Panel

Ann Nicol, Co-Chair                PDD Review Panel

See Additional ALIGN Correspondence/News and Resources related to PDD Review and FSCD

Voices of Albertan’s With Disabilities: Invitation to Sign on to the Open Letter Accessible Canada Act Bill C-81

Voices of Albertan’s With Disabilities: Invitation to Sign on to the Open Letter Accessible Canada Act Bill C-81 November 1, 2018

The draft Accessible Canada Act Bill C-81 is currently being reviewed by the Standing Committee on Human Resources and Skill Development (HUMA).
There has been a number of presentations made to the Committee about amendments that should be made to the draft Bill to strengthen impact. The Council of Canadians with Disabilities is concerned that the HUMA Committee is not going to act on the recommended changes. “ Among those who have been actively monitoring the proceedings, there is a consensus that the Liberals have not been persuaded by what they have heard concerning the need for substantive amendments, including the call for timelines. Instead, they are looking for cosmetic changes. The Liberal Committee members seem to be of the mindset that the entire disability community is behind Bill C-81. To strengthen Bill C-81, we must alter that misperception and show strong support behind the core recommendations coming from the disability community and these are presented in the Open Letter.”
This open letter, has been prepared for submission to Minister Qualtrough. The points in the letter are supported by Voice of Albertans with Disabilities and we have signed onto the letter. The more organizations /people that let Minister Qualtrough know they are in support of changes that will strengthen the draft Accessible Canada Act Bill C-81, the more she can champion our cause.
This email is your invitation to sign on to the Open Letter. Please reply to Steven Estey <> to indicate your organization’s willingness to sign on to the letter and copy us in at
Maureen Murphy-Black
ADF Co-ordinator
Voice of Albertans with Disabilities

Alberta Government News Release: Standing up for Indigenous Families October 31, 2018

New legislation would expand court access for First Nations and ensure private guardianships do not happen without mandatory home studies and cultural plans. If passed, An Act for Strong Families Building Stronger Communities would fulfil one of 16 immediate actions set out in A Stronger, Safer Tomorrow, Alberta’s four-year public action plan to improve the child intervention system. The action plan focuses particular attention on the safety of the more than 6,000 Indigenous children and youth receiving intervention services from the province…

New Advocate for Persons with Disabilities October 30, 2018

For the first time, Albertans with disabilities will have a dedicated advocate to help them resolve issues, find supports and promote inclusion.

Alberta’s new Advocate for Persons with Disabilities was selected after an open competition process. More than 1,300 Albertans with disabilities, families, service providers and support organizations provided input on the role, responsibilities and top priorities for the advocate’s first year of work during public consultations last spring.

Flores has a bachelor of arts degree in economics and political science with extensive personal and professional experience working with people with disabilities, their support networks and stakeholders. He is a self-advocate who believes strongly in empowering people with disabilities to reach their full potential and looks forward to being part of a team that will focus on improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.  Flores is an accomplished athlete, has extensive experience working with a non-profit organization and has volunteered – both locally and internationally – mentoring and coaching athletes with disabilities.

OCYA Reports for 19-year-old Dakota, 14-year-old Lee and 17-year-old Susan Oct 2018.

October 30, 2018

Child and Youth Advocate releases reviews highlighting the importance of supporting youth with mental health and complex needs

Edmonton…The Office of the Child and Youth Advocate (OCYA) has completed three investigative reviews and is publicly releasing the results as outlined under the Child and Youth Advocate Act. The reviews focus on one serious injury, and two deaths involving First Nations young people.

Read the full news release here.

Read the OCYA reports for 19-year-old Dakota, 14-year-old Lee and 17-year-old Susan here.

Charities and Nonprofits: Alberta Election 2019 News & Resources

Includes news, reports, resources and training related to nonprofits/charities and political activities. Be prepared for 2019 Alberta Election and view ALIGN Key Message and Political Tool Kit.

ALIGN & Sector News October 25, 2018

Update date news for Alberta Human Service agencies regarding initiatives, resources and training relevant to agencies who serve children, youth and families. Find out more about impact of postal disruption, PDD Program review, New autism safety resources, upcoming grant deadlines and more!

Letter from ALIGN Association to The Honorable Rachel Notley Re: Bill 17 and Bill 30

The Honorable Rachel Notley,

We want to commend you on leading your party, as government, for a full term and look forward to another term of the NDP next spring. We appreciate your efforts in implementing a number of initiatives for the human services sector and the vulnerable Albertans we serve. As you are aware, ALIGN represents a number of agencies that contract with Children Services to provide a range of services from community support to campus based residential treatment care and everywhere in between. ALIGN also represents Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD) agencies.

Over the last year, implementation of Bill 17 and Bill 30 have had some unforeseen and unintended consequences for workers in this sector. While the intention is admirable, the added costs of providing service with respect to the changes required in each piece of legislation are unintentionally prohibitive. ..Read Full Letter

Excerpt: Bill 17 – The Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act
We have been working along with Alberta Council of Disability Services (ACDS) and Alberta Home Visitation Network Association (AHVNA) and the Ministries of Community and Social Services, Children’s Services and Labour to explore regulatory options to changes in overtime requirements in Bill 17. During that time, numerous options were explored and some moments of frustration occurred as well as conflicting information and false starts. We have advocated for the flexibility required to manage the issue. Through meeting with the three Deputy Ministers we have arrived at a confirmation that the existing Caregiver Exemption should be interpreted broadly and applied to most direct service roles across Child Intervention, Home Visitation, PDD and FSCD. As a result of our negotiations and the legislative requirements, and nature of staffing for 24/7 operations, there has been significant added costs for statutory pay and overtime. Many agencies have had to stop offering… Read Full Letter

Excerpt Bill 30 – An Act to Protect the Health and Well-Being of Working Albertans
We continue to discuss the impact and concerns related to changes to OHS requirements in Bill 30 with Ministry officials at Community and Social Services, Children Services and Alberta Labour including the human resource, administrative and financial impacts. Those issues include OHS expectations related to violence, right to refuse work, supervisory expectations and Health and Safety Committees. Although we support the intent and spirit of the legislation it has created some unexpected financial hardships. We have shared our concerns with ministry officials regarding these requirements and the challenges regarding recruitment, retention and training needs as well as the potential for an employer to have numerous smaller “worksites”. Alberta Labour has confirmed that..Read Full Letter

See More Related ALIGN Correspondence & Initiatives
Bill 17 – Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act 
Bill 30 Occupational Health and Safety Act

ALIGN Directory – Election 2019 Alberta Nonprofit/Charities and Election News, Tool Kits & Resources Re Political Activity

Apathy is Boring Looking for RISE Ambassadors in Edmonton & Youth Election Readiness Tool Kit

Apathy is Boring Looking for RISE Ambassadors in Edmonton
Apathy is Boring is a non-partisan, charitable organization that supports and educates youth to be active and contributing citizens in Canada’s democracy. An initiative of Canada Service Corps, the RISE program is one way for young people to take action in their communities. Over the course of 20 weeks, the RISE Ambassadors from Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto will co-create and execute a community project promoting social inclusion in their cities.

Creating A Sustainable Dialogue Around Elections Election Readiness Toolkit Manual
This manual has been developed to help community organizations, like yours support youth engagement and involvement when an election is called.

This short informative video explains how government works and how issues that YOU care about are affected by voting and relevant policies.

ALIGN Directory – Election 2019 Alberta Nonprofit/Charities and Election News, Tool Kits & Resources Re Political Activity

CCVO Report Released State of the Alberta Nonprofit Sector 2018

The report explores the state of the nonprofit sector, looks to the year ahead, and shares priorities of nonprofits for the upcoming provincial election – and some suggestions for collective action.

HIGHLIGHTS– a sample of what we heard from nonprofits across Alberta:

1. There is a cautious optimism among sector leaders – despite the lingering impacts of the economic downturn on funding availability.

2. There is uncertainty about the impact of the next provincial election around potential changing priorities and available funding.

3. There are three main issues that the sector would like to see addressed by political parties in the upcoming provincial election:

  • Clearer communications between the government and the sector.
  • Recognition of the contributions that the nonprofit sector makes both socially and economically.
  • More sustainable, predictable, and flexible funding.

Visit CCVO Site for Details and Report CCVO State of the Alberta Nonprofit Sector 2018

ALIGN Directory – Election 2019 Alberta Nonprofit/Charities and Election News, Tool Kits & Resources Re Political Activity

Visiting Lecture Series Traditional Cree Parenting – MOTHERING THEY/THEM Edmonton November 8, 2018

Visiting Lecture Series  -Faculty Of Health And Community Studies Macewan.Ca/Community
Traditional Cree parenting systems are based on Natural Laws of truth, kindness, courage and sharing. There were, and still remain, strict parenting protocols that allowed a child to grow into their gifts and skills within a system of love, patience and security without fear of judgement and punishment….
Thursday, November 8, 2018

3:30—5:00 Pm, Kule Theatre,
9-323 Robbins Health Learning Centre

Alberta PS4LLC Caregiver Information Package 2018

Practice Strategies for Lifelong Connections
The integration of the original 6 Practice Strategies and the philosophy and 4 strategies of Lifelong Connections has resulted in principle-based practice approach called Practice Strategies for Lifelong Connections. The original 6 practice strategies focused on the “front end” of practice, specifically intake, assessment and decisions related to children coming into care. They embed family centered and strengths-based practice early into the assessment process through slowing down and critically thinking through decisions, involving parents as active partners and engaging extended family and natural supports early in the process of safety planning for children and youth…

Practice Strategies for Lifelong Connections pptx
Practice Strategies for Lifelong Connections is a principle-based practice approach under the Child Intervention Practice Framework that includes 10 practice strategies focusing on promoting safety, well-being, and connections, from intake to file closure and supports critical thinking in decision making, creating and maintaining connections, and thoughtful transition planning…

4 Areas of Connection
Through consultation with stakeholders, 4 key areas where strong relationships are critical were identified. They describe how strong lasting relationships support overall well-being and safety of children and youth.  These key areas focus on the importance of human relationships within a family and community context and guide creating and maintaining meaningful connections for children and youth to people who love them unconditionally. The 4 areas of connection expand our understanding of permanency for the children, youth and families we all work with, moving the focus beyond just legal permanence. These connections are established and maintained through collaboration, critical thinking and intentional planning for children and youth.

Frequently asked Questions: Practice Strategies for Lifelong Connections – Caregivers

Family Finding – Caregivers
Family Finding is an approach that seeks to build and maintain a natural support network for children and youth disconnected from their home and community.  It helps children and youth in care connect or reconnect with, create, and maintain relationships with adults who are important to them.  These people can include parents or guardians, siblings, past caregivers, extended family members, adult siblings from previous placements, teachers, daycare providers, or anyone else they have had significant relationships with in the past.  These relationships are important for children’s well-being, allowing them to know who their family is and where they come from, to know their cultural or religious heritage, and to establish supportive connections into their adulthood…

Signs of Safety®An Overview for Alberta
Signs of Safety is an approach to Child Intervention that was developed by Child Intervention staff to enhance child safety and uses professional social work concepts such as strengths-based and solution-focused methods and integrates them with the family’s expertise and cultural knowledge. It encourages a balanced and rigorous exploration of danger or harm as well as indicators of safety and focuses on risk assessment and safety planning...


Child Intervention Review Panel & A Stronger, Safer Tomorrow Action Plan
Child Intervention Practice Framework (CIPF)
Family Finding
Signs of Safety

LGTBQ2S Youth/Young Adults Survey Regarding Their Experiences With Either the Children’s Services or Youth Justice System

In partnership with the Edmonton area and the CHEW Project, a survey has been developed to gather information from LGTBQ2S youth and young adults regarding their experiences with either the Children’s Services or Youth Justice system.  This feedback will be used to inform program, policy and service delivery development broadly.

Are you an Albertan sexual or gender minority (LGBTQ2S+) youth or young adult who has been street-involved, homeless, or who has had some involvement with Children’s Services and/or the youth justice system? If any of these experiences apply to you, the CHEW (Comprehensive Health Education Workers) Project would really like to have you complete this survey so we learn from you and provide supports focused on your health, wellbeing, personal characteristics and experiences, relationships, needs, and everyday activities and living situations. We want to know how you cope, survive, and overcome different obstacles.If you have questions or concerns, please email us at To participate in this survey, which has ethics approval from the University of Alberta Research Ethics Board, please visit:

Alberta Government Announcement Preventing Violence, Creating Healthy Communities October 18, 2018

The Alberta government is taking action to prevent family violence by supporting organizations that address the causes and create local solutions. October 18, 2018

Organizations can now apply for Family and Community Safety Program grants that support their work to prevent family and sexual violence, promote healthy relationships and create inclusive communities. Successful projects work to connect community members and expand supports for diverse populations, including the disability community, and Indigenous and LGBTQ groups….

Apply by visiting

We are happy to announce that a new round of Family and Community Safety Program (FCSP) grants are now being accepted. This call will focus on projects that address family violence, sexual violence, bullying, and the promotion of healthy relationships.

Applications are now open and will be accepted until November 30, 2018. Current and former FCSP recipients are welcome to apply.

For more information, including the grant criteria and the application form, please visit our website at

Catriona Gunn-Graham



Lisa Marie Gaudreau

Contracts and Grants Administrator


Jane Schlosser

Stakeholder Engagement Advisor


Uzma Williams

Evaluation and Measurement Analyst


Live-streamed keynote sessions: CSAE Conference in Ottawa October 24 & 25, 2018

Can’t make it to this year’s CSAE Conference in Ottawa? They are offering opportunities to participate in some of it — from wherever you are. (Yes, for free!)

Tune in to live-streamed keynote sessions:  

The Coup: How to Lead and Create Disruption Within Organizations & Industries  with  Ron Tite
Wednesday, October 24
9 AM to 10:30 AM EST

Keynote Panel with Nora Young
Thursday, October 25
8 AM to 10 AM EST

Panelists include:
Maya Roy, CEO, YWCA Canada
Abdullah Snobar, Executive Director, DMZ
Ahmad Zbib, CEO, Canadian Rheumatology Association

The Power of Principle: Fearless (as Possible) on the Rocky Road to Ethical Leadership with Denise Donlon
Friday, October 26
12:45 PM to 1:30 PM EST

To participate, simply click on this link at the time noted above for your desired session:

Important Announcement from Children’s Services Regarding Potential Mail Disruption

Important Announcement from Holley Belland  Manager | Children’s Services Regarding Potential Mail Disruption October 19, 2018

While you may have been notified through other channels, we wanted to update you informally on our contingency plans for addressing the possible service disruption affecting mail delivery.

On Wednesday October 17, 2018 , the National Executive Board issued what is known as a “72-hour strike notice” to Canada Post for both the RSMC and Urban units. The National Executive Board has decided that the strike will begin on Monday morning, October 22, 2018, at 00:01 should they not have reached negotiated settlements.

The National Executive Board has opted for rotating strikes. Their locations and intensity will depend on Canada Post’s actions at the bargaining table in the days to come. When the targeted locations of the rotating strikes becomes available, they will disseminate the information immediately.

All payments currently made by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT or Direct Deposit) will continue as usual. This applies to the majority of Foster and Kinship caregivers.

To ensure the delivery of cheques for clients and vendors are not negatively impacted in the event of a service disruption, cheques for Children’s Services programs have been held back from Canada Post as of September 20, 2018 and will continue until a resolution of the strike occurs.

Cheques are being returned to the region’s Accounting Officer or Edmonton and Calgary regional head office for further distribution to originating worksite offices. Worksites will be provided tracking forms and instructions for distribution to vendors and clients. This means that it is the responsibility of each site to ensure that when cheques are returned to them arrangements are made for caregivers to receive those cheques.  We hope this information will assist in any inquiries you might receive. It might be valuable to consider posting this information on your respective websites.

Please note that the above does NOT apply for Alberta Family Employment Tax Credit (AFETC) and Alberta Child Benefit (ACB) cheques as these programs are administered by the Canada Revenue Agency.  The Government of Canada has contingency plans in the event of a labour action for federally administered programs. Payments for the AFETC and the ACB are expected to be delivered within a few days of regular delivery.

Service Alberta will provide public information via and will manage other public notifications related to this issue as required.

We will continue to share information as it becomes available.

We hope that this uncertainty will soon end and we will return to normal handling of payments. Please do not hesitate to call me if you have any questions or concerns.


Holley Belland

Manager | Children’s Services

Policy, Practice and Program Development

10th fl Sterling Place
9940 – 106 Street
Edmonton, AB T5K 2N2

Desk: 780-644-3484 | Cell:  780-686-2844

ALIGN & Sector News and Updates October 17, 2018

This bulletin includes announcements from Alberta Ministers regarding A Stronger, Safer Tomorrow Action Plan and Cannabis Legislation in regards to caregiver providers. Also find upcoming training, sector resources and news.

Imagine Canada Re: Data Collection on Charitable and Nonprofit Sector

Imagine Canada Re: Data Collection on Charitable and Nonprofit Sector

Statistics Canada is conducting consultations during the week of October 15-19, in an effort to modernize the way they collect, use and disseminate data, as well as to gather input on information needs, what data is collected and how its used.

Statistics Canada historically collected and disseminated data about the size, scope, financing, and human resources of the charitable and nonprofit sector through the Satellite Account of Non-Profit Institutions and Volunteering. The Satellite Account was discontinued in 2008.

Currently we don’t have up-to-date data to accurately describe the extent of the sector’s contribution. It is critical that we have up-to-date data in order to understand our contribution, advocate for improved operating environments and influence public policy, especially given the sector’s role in helping the government achieve its policy objectives around inclusive innovation and economic growth.

You can help by taking part in the consultations and urge Statistics Canada to collect and analyze data on the social purpose sector. Email Statistics Canada if you would like to participate in the consultation activities or for more information.

Click here to learn more about our sector-wide data strategy and read our letter that was sent to Minister Bains in August requesting support in obtaining important data on the charitable and nonproft sector.

Cannabis and Youth/Kids in Care: Children’s Services Update and Related Resources October 15, 2018

Key Messages From Rae-Ann Lajeunesse ADM, Children Services, Child Intervention Oct 15, 2018
While the use of cannabis may be legal after this date, there are implications we all must consider, especially in our work keeping families together and children safe. As partners in service delivery, and the actual caregivers for children in care, there is a particular role for you as wel

The legalization of cannabis does not change the environmental safety requirements for foster and kinship caregivers in their homes. This includes the safe storage of potentially hazardous materials and maintaining a smoke-free environment. Policy and the Environmental Safety Assessment checklist are being updated to reflect the addition of Cannabis and Cannabis products.

We have asked caseworkers and support workers to also share this information with kinship and foster caregivers that they work with, so you may receive this information more than once.

With legalization, there are bound to be unique and unexpected situations that arise. If you encounter an issue and you are unsure how to manage it, please direct those questions to your support worker or the child’s worker and then will ensure that you receive the information that you need. We will be tracking these queries to help us determine further areas of clarification.
Read Full Correspondence

Alberta Government Resources
Q&A document pertaining to the legalization of cannabis and our policies around safe environments in homes: Cannabis QA – Caregivers– Includes background information on legalization and the implications to legalization caregivers should be aware of.
Alberta Health Services
Information on the health risks associated with the use of cannabis and other harm reduction resources for parents, caregivers, educators, and health professionals,
Alberta Cannabis Framework and legislation
Includes links to but not limited to:
Minimum age
Buying cannabis
Possessing cannabis
Drug-impaired driving
Impairment in workplaces
Fact Sheet
The Future of Cannabis in Alberta
Information for tenants (PDF, 388 KB)
Information for landlords
(PDF, 489 KB)

Additional Resources
ALIGN Association Resource Directory
OHS Cannabis In The Workplace

Government of Canada
Cannabis in Canada
Health effects of cannabis
Talking with teenagers about drugs
Don’t drive high

Canada’s lower-risk cannabis use guidelines

How to talk to your kids about cannabis

CCSA Canada
Talking Pot with Youth: A Cannabis Communication Guide for Youth Allies.
The guide takes a harm reduction approach and provides a basis for communicating accurate information on cannabis. This information will support young people in making informed decisions about their cannabis use. Also view Let’s talk cannabis

RAISE THE VOICE OF CHILDREN: Do children know their rights? Let’s ask them.

The Canadian Coalition for the Rights of Children (CCRC) invites the children in your life to have a voice through this survey of what children know about their rights and how they want to learn about them. What children tell us will inform what we propose to improve the ways children can learn about their rights in Canada.  Click to do the survey and share it with others. This initiative is part of a larger campaign to RAISE THE BAR for children’s rights in Canada.

Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Program Review

October 2018
Letter from Alberta Community and Social Services Office of the Minister re PDD Review October 12, 2018

Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) Program Review October 2, 2018
Today, the Minister of Community and Social Services announced the appointment of a community-led panel to oversee the review of the PDD program. The review panel will be seeking input from Albertans with developmental disabilities, their families and guardians and others involved in supporting their participation in the community about how PDD can support the personal choices, independence, priorities and needs of those who receive services through PDD
Letter from Community and Social Services Office of the Minister Ifran Sabir Oct 2, 2018

You May Also Be Interested in  FASD New Policies and Upcoming Listening Sessions

See More FASD/PDD Review

The Alberta Government is Increasing Support for Legal Aid

The Alberta government is increasing support for legal aid to ensure low-income and vulnerable Albertans can access the justice system for years to come. A $70-million increase over four years will allow Legal Aid Alberta, which manages the province’s legal aid program, to broaden access, improve services and meet future demand. Last year, over 60,000 Albertans accessed Legal Aid, with more than a third of those cases serving family matters. The funding will also make Alberta’s legal system more efficient by minimizing delays and reducing court backlogs….

Alberta Mental Health Advocacy Coalition (AMHAC) Message

Sustainable High-Quality Healthcare in Alberta, especially in Addictions and Mental Health, Needs Better Relations Between Frontline Healthcare Providers and Healthcare Management

October 9, 2018

Honourable Sarah Hoffman, Deputy Premier, Minister of Health:

The Alberta Mental Health Advocacy Coalition (AMHAC) includes concerned people of various backgrounds whose Vision Statement is to participate in the transformation of the healthcare system, particularly in the area of Addictions and Mental Health, to one that is more accessible, appropriate, equitable, effective, empowering and sustainable for patients, their families, the public and care providers.

We recognize the challenges of dealing with problems that one inherited and applaud the government’s efforts to be fiscally responsible in a challenging economic time.

Yet, we are concerned that the ongoing problematic relations between health management/leadership and frontline care providers continues to undermine quality of care, patient safety, and responsible stewardship of public resources.

We recognize that to improve public Addictions and Mental Health services, there needs to be improved accountability of healthcare managers and better relations between frontline healthcare providers and healthcare management.

It matters little if patients find frontline healthcare providers whose integrity and judgement they trust, if those healthcare providers work within organization(s) where managers undermine the frontline healthcare providers.  Without the support and resources of a larger healthcare organization/healthcare system, individual care providers are not able to provide adequate care for the most sick, high-risk, and or complex patients.

Proposed Solutions 

  • Healthcare managers held accountable for health outcomes, not solely cost outcomes.
  • Effective conflict resolution process between frontline healthcare providers, healthcare management, Union representative (if Union members involved) with Patient Advocate(s) present, and binding arbitration.
  • Consequences for healthcare managers/leaders involved in ‘ambush management’- lack of any or adequate notice to front-line workers of critical changes affecting ability to meet their care responsibilities. Frontline care providers need to be included in decisions and determinations of timelines.
  • Ensuring that Physician Leaders in public Addiction and Mental Health (AMH) services support psychotherapeutic treatments as well as psychotropic drug treatments.
  • Additional measures to safeguard health professionals who speak about concerns and or advocate.

Thank you for your attention.

Person(s) committed to sustainable high-quality healthcare in Alberta.

If in support of sustainable quality healthcare, please forward this email to the Health Minister and your MLA.

The Alberta Health Minister’s email is

One can find your local Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) at

If would like more information, or have questions or concerns regarding this Advocacy, please contact me at tammy_hugie

Tammy Hugie MD, Psychiatry

Director of Advocacy, Alberta Mental Health Advocacy Coalition (AMHAC)

AMH De-skilling Publicly Funded AMH Services Available to most Underserved and Vulnerable Clients
AMH Distrust.NECHC.University updated
AMH Patient.letter.redacted
AMH Alberta Mental Health Advocacy Coalition (AMHAC), Who Are We

Update Family Supports to Children with Disabilities Sept 2018

September 2018

FSCD Action Plan – In response to the concerns raised by parents about the FSCD program the Ministry of Community and Support Services (CSS) have changed our Specialized Services policy, Family Centred Supports and Services policy, FSCD Program Outcomes Policy and Overarching Policies and Considerations Policy to confirm that direct services to children are supported and parent involvement is not required in the delivery of specialized services.

In May 2018, Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD) listening sessions were held in Edmonton and Calgary.  This fall FSCD is hosting additional listening sessions to hear from you if what they heard in May is reflective of family’s concerns about FSCD specialized services; about the changes made in response; about communication between FSCD, parents and service providers; and how the FSCD Multi-disciplinary Team (MDT) process can be more supportive to parents.

If you were not aware of the May listening sessions or the changes made in FSCD, please visit the FSCD website at  Here you will find a copy of the ‘What we Heard’ report as well as ‘tip sheets’ that provide updated and clarified information about FSCD specialized services.  The ‘What we Heard’ report highlights the concerns parents raised and the government’s commitment to changes.  You can also contact your FSCD worker or your regional office for more information about the policy updates and the practice shifts being made.

Below are the upcoming FSCD listening sessions across the province.  Parents, service providers and others are welcome to register to attend a session.   Each listening session is limited to 50 participants due to space and the desire to have small group discussions where FSCD can hear from you.  You can register to attend a listening session online through Eventbrite at

If you are a parent and require assistance with costs for your attendance such as travel, parking, and respite there will be assistance with these costs through your FSCD Agreement or reimbursement. You are welcome to bring your child with you however, there will not be onsite childcare.

If you are unable to attend one of the listening sessions, but want to comment on the “What we Heard Report”, the changes made, ways to improve communication and how the FSCD Multi-disciplinary Team (MDT) process can be more supportive to families, you can provide your input by email to Alternatively, you can also go to the Listening Sessions Webpage  to provide feedback.

While the listening sessions will be focused on specific discussions as noted above, you are welcome to email with any other concerns or comments you may have or to contact the Executive Director for Disability Services, Roxanne Gerbrandt at

When you register, you will be able to select from any of the following listening sessions:

  • Grand Prairie, Tuesday, October 9, 2018, 6:30 to 8:30 pm
  • Calgary, Wednesday, October 10, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Calgary, Thursday, October 11, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Calgary, Saturday, October 13, 2018, 2:00 to 4:00 pm
  • Lethbridge, Tuesday, October 16, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Medicine Hat, Wednesday, October 17, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Red Deer, Thursday, October 18, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Edmonton, Monday, October 22, 1:00 to 3:00 pm
  • Edmonton, Wednesday, October 24, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Edmonton, Thursday, October 25, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • Fort McMurray, Thursday, October 25, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • St. Paul, Monday, October 29, 2018, 7:30 to 9:30 pm
  • Red Deer, Tuesday, October 30, 2018, 6:00 to 8:00 pm

WHAT WE HEARD Feedback from parents, families and advocates in the Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD) program June 2018

Letter from Minister Sabir to FSCD Colleagues June 29, 2018

Letter from Minister Sabir to FSCD Parents June 29, 2018

Policy 10-77 Specialized Services for Children with Severe Disabilities

Policy 2-7 Family-Centred Supports and Services

Policy 2-7 Family-Centred Supports and Services-2

Policy 7-3 Matters to be Considered

Policy 2-8 FSCD Program Outcomes

Information to Parents – Multi-Year Agreements

Information for Parents – FSCD Concerns Resolution

Information for Parents – FSCD Specialized Services Practices and Approa…

Information for Parents – General Specialized Services

FSCD Practice Shift – Service Provider Discussions September 2018-1

ALIGN E.D. Update AGM 2018

Dear 2018/2019 ALIGN Association Members

Welcome to Fall 2018.  This has been an extremely busy year with the implementation of Bill 17 and Bill 30, violence prevention inspections in group care, tenders for campus based group care, the review of the child intervention program and now the PDD review, just to name a few things.  In this news I wanted to highlight a few things and then talk about the political tool kit and how you can get out and see action in the upcoming months before the predicted election in the spring 2019.

  • fair and family friendly workplaces the government passed Bill 17
    Bill 17 There have been some consequences as a result of this legislation. We have received official notice that the agencies who provide services for the Ministry of Community and Support Services will receive financial support for the minimum wage and statutory holiday costs. My understanding is that our contract managers will be asking you to fill in a template to help gather information. For Children Service’s there have been no official announcements but I believe they are working on gathering information relating to statutory holidays in an effort to compensate contracted agencies.  I do not know how this will affect Fee for Service providers.  You may want to make sure you have had conversations with the contract managers in the regions. See All ALIGN Engagement and Resources Bill 17
  • Roadmap to COR
    ALIGN received a grant to support the Roadmap to COR This course helps agencies develop their safety management system and customizes the requirements of the legislation to fit the unique needs of their agency and the sector.  We currently have 72 people from 42 agencies participating.   We have requested another grant to run the same program over again this time next year.   See All ALIGN Engagement and or Resources Roadmap to COR
  • New Grant Request
    ALIGN is also asking for 2 other grants offered by the Ministry of Labour. One to support the development of an electronic best practice guide for this sector based on the assignments and suggestions of the group currently in the Roadmap program; and the second is to offer some training on wellness in the workplace to support the mandatory training for the committees and also for anyone else who is interested.
  • Care Worker Violence Prevention Focused Inspection Program
    The Ministry of Labour is doing another focused inspection program for group care facilities. I sent out notification about this earlier this week.  Be aware that the program is from October 1, 2018 to January 31, 21019.  The goal is to change the culture of the workplace to ensure violence is not tolerated or at least mitigated appropriately for workers
    See Full Update Here
  • FSCD Action Plan – In response to the concerns raised by parents about the FSCD program the Ministry of Community and Support Services (CSS) have changed our Specialized Services policy, Family Centred Supports and Services policy, FSCD Program Outcomes Policy and Overarching Policies and Considerations Policy to confirm that direct services to children are supported and parent involvement is not required in the delivery of specialized services. Please find updated policies on our website.
  • Save The Date ALIGN 3rd Annual Symposium (Group Care): Global Research on Group Care Symposium Feb 7-8, 2019 at the Fantasyland Hotel in Edmonton.
    We currently have Martha Holden and James Anglin confirmed and are just working out the details on 2 other academics to support the conference.
    Please save the date as more will be forthcoming soon on the details.
  • ALIGN Key Message Election 2019    ALIGN Political Toolkit Election 2019
  • I want to take a few minutes to outline why we have taken the strategy we have this year in hopes that you will understand the messages well and see your agency as well as ALIGN in them.  We hope you can use these messages as a foundation for your discussions with politicians in your constituencies.  Our Government Relations Committee (GRC) developed this approach after meeting with some political experts and Paul McLoughlin at our AGM confirmed some of their thinking.  At this point the polls show that the UCP has a high likelihood of wining an election in the spring 2019.  But polls are only good at the time that they are taken, there are still a number of months to go and any strategy should include both or all parties.  Having said that, there have been a few hints about the UCP we should pay close attention to:
  • If the UCP does become the leaders of the government we will be looking at a whole new legislature so we should not expect that they have a structure as they are very inexperienced in governing as the NDP were when they got in.
  • Currently the government is in the red zone so little to no spending is happening
  • There is little investor confidence in either party
  • The UCP will focus on competition; getting markets reactivated; and the private or outsourcing of delivery of services
  • The NDP like government services but so far have support the human services contracted sector.
  • UCP will shrink government, therefore a message of we are the best people to do the work should resonate
  • There is no new money for either party. We need to argue for incremental increases to support infrastructure and operation in order to sustain the sector.
  • Our agencies have established business practiced and can prove our services are professionally delivered and cost effective. We work for competitive prices and have good outcomes- we are well established.
  • We need to remind parties that there is no saving in diminishing the sector as we help Albertans to remain out of hospitals, in their homes, look after their families

Our action request is that nominees talk to their colleagues and make sure they understand the value of the sector and support it.  We must be sustained into future.

As nominees are announced, please invite them to visit your agencies or go out and see them, educate people on the work you do for the community.  The toolkit helps you with templates for letters.  ALIGN will be sending out a newsletter to all candidates soon to ensure they hear from us, we will also be going to some of the platform committees and meeting with high profile politicians.  Use the key messages as a foundation for discussion, you should see yourselves as part of a larger sector in there and can outline some examples of the good work you do in your community that the candidate will back and support.

Also encourage your staff to get out and vote!

If you have nay questions or need help please don’t hesitate to give me a call or email.

Rhonda Barraclough


Alberta to fund green upgrades for non-profits Sarah Rieger CBC News Sep 26, 2018

Alberta to fund green upgrades for non-profits Sarah Rieger · CBC News · Posted: Sep 26, 2018 4:40 PM MT | Last Updated: September 26 Non-Profit Energy Efficiency Transition (NEET)
Environment Minister Shannon Phillips announced the latest step in the Non-Profit Energy Efficiency Transition (NEET) Programat the single-day Alberta Climate Summit Currently through NEET — which is overseen by provincial agency Energy Efficiency Alberta — non-profits can receive audits to identify opportunities to save on energy costs.The next step in the program will see the government working with contractors to purchase and install the needed upgrades, which could be everything from LED light bulbs to new furnaces or solar energy systems. …

ALIGN Presents Foundations of Caregiver Support 101 Training Series 2018 – 2019 Dates/Locations

All modules will be offered in both Edmonton and Calgary same day.
Module 1 is pre-requisite for the other four modules.
Module 2 thru 5 can be completed in any order

Who is this training for?
Foster parents and staff working with children, youth and families in Alberta. Kinship families working towards legal permanency (adoption or private guardianship) are strongly urged to take this training as well.

Why is this training required?
To achieve consistent trauma-informed support for children and families across the province at all levels

What will I learn?
FCS training aims to shift thinking from “what is wrong with this child? To a more informed “what has happened to this child?” and further, “how can I improve the developmental trajectory of this child?”

There are five modules in the training series
Module 1: Colonization, Historical Trauma and Healing
Module 2: The Core Story of Brain Development
Module 3: Child Development
Module 4: Loss and Grief
Module 5: Trauma, Stress and the Developing Brain

See Details, Dates and Locations

Resource Focus – CTA’s Caregiver Challenge Estimator

Caring for children creates physical and emotional demands that can be exhausting. The time, attention and energy of any caregiver is limited. When caregivers are depleted, it is much more difficult to meet children’s needs. There are a number of factors that influence the internal and external resources of any caregiver, and there are other factors that increase the caregiving ‘burden’ such as age of the child, as well as physical, emotional or behavioral problems.

CTA’s Caregiving Challenge Estimator (CCE) is a tool that is intended to provide an estimate of the caregiving ‘burden’ facing a primary caregiver at a given moment in time. Available for anyone to purchase and use, this simple tool allows professionals to estimate the balance between resources and demands to determine the Caregiving Reserve score; in turn, this information can help in clinical decision-making and psychoeducation for the caregivers.

As with all metrics, this report is intended to supplement and not replace the clinical decision making process.  Report packages are now available for purchase.

CCSA Launches ‘Best Practices across the Continuum of Care for the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder’

Executive Summary

People living with an opioid use disorder in Canada should have access to comprehensive treatment options that meet all their needs. ‘Best Practices across the Continuum of Care for the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder’ presents services that should be available to individuals experiencing or at risk of experiencing harms from opioid use.

This report, developed to inform Health Canada’s Federal, Provincial and Territorial Treatment Task Group, outlines the standard of service that should implemented to provide person-centred care to all people experiencing harms from opioids. The report includes a summary of actions taking place across Canada at multiple levels of government to help.

eMental Health Call for Community Expression of Interest Deadline September 28, 2018

Here is your opportunity to participate in a proposed research project implementing and evaluating e-Mental Health (e-MH) tools for youth and young adults.The link below displays the flyer which provides a summary of the proposed study and community eligibility, along with a link to the full application for interested communities. The deadline to submit the completed application is Friday, September 28, 2018; simply email it to

The proposed study is led by the Addiction and Mental Health (AMH), and Maternal, Newborn, Child & Youth (MNCY) Strategic Clinical Networks™, including researchers from Alberta Health Services (AHS), the University of Calgary, and the University of Alberta. If successful, this study will receive up to $5 million over 4 years to implement and evaluate known-effective e-Mental Health (e-MH) tools in Alberta for youth and young adults. The tools include Online Peer-to-Peer and Family Support, Internet-Based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Internet-Based Screening for Anxiety and Depression, and Screening and Brief Intervention. The study will evaluate whether the e-MH tools improve health and system outcomes such as intervention uptake, reduced wait times, quality of life and symptom control, and barriers to care such as stigma.

Five interested communities across Alberta will be selected to participate in this potential research opportunity. Communities will implement e-MH tools that will be integrated into the local healthcare and social system and accessed in different ways. Communities selected for the study will participate in the co-design process, and receive support and training in the use and implementation of the e-MH tools.

For more information, please consult the attached flyer and the application. The application can also be accessed and downloaded from Community Application. If you’re not sure whether a community/leader has received this information, don’t hesitate to forward this email to them. If you have any questions about the application, please contact


Alberta Anti-Racism Advisory Council Seeking Council Members Deadline September 15, 2018

The Alberta government is recruiting up to 25 people to join the council. Members will be selected through
a public recruiting process that is open until September 15, 2018.

The Alberta Anti-Racism Advisory Council (AARAC) is seeking individuals who are recognized by their peers for their commitment to human rights and combatting racism. Successful applicants will be willing to represent the best interests of Alberta’s diverse communities, and be committed to working proactively and in a manner that is not biased or in conflict of
interest. AARAC members will have an understanding of realities and challenges that relate to racism. The council will represent the diversity of Alberta, including factors such as geography, urban and rural regions, age groups, physical ability, sexual and gender identities, ethnocultural groups, and service and activity sectors.

National Indigenous Cultural Expo Edmonton September 28 – September 30 2018

Join thousands of Indigenous people from all across the Turtle Island for the first ever National Indigenous Cultural Expo (NICE), featuring Canada’s largest Pow Wow, Metis Festival, and Inuit Showcase.

NICE will include not only Powwow but Metis and Inuit Sport/Cultural showcases/competitions, Indigenous fashion show, trade show, gala and more!

Tickets available at the Concierge desk by the Alberta Ballroom in the Edmonton EXPO Centre from 12pm-8pm on Sept 26 and 27.

Adult – $20 Daily
Child (7-17) – $10 Daily
Under 6 – Free

Kids Brain Health Network Crisis in Care: The Discussion on Transitions for Youth with Disabilities is Far from Over

As young people with disabilities head towards adulthood, they find themselves cut off from familiar health services only to fall through the cracks of a fragmented adult care system. Last month, Dr. Jan Willem Gorter, KBHN investigator, Director of CanChild at McMaster, and transition clinician, had the opportunity to share about this critical, Canada-wide issue in CBC’s White Coat Black Art’s town hall, Crisis in Care.  People with disabilities, family members, and caregivers gathered to openly discuss their experiences and struggles with transitions as well as advocate for potential solutions…

Alberta Health Resource How to Spot an Opioid Overdose

If you’re using drugs, or are with someone who is using, these are the signs and symptoms to watch out for. If they happen, don’t leave things to chance, call 911 immediately. Canada’s new Good Samaritan law can protect you. For step by step instructions on what to do in the event you suspect someone is overdosing, watch Ask a Paramedic if you have a naloxone kit follow the SAVE ME steps and instructions below

New Opioid Crisis Supports for Indigenous People

A provincial grant to Native Friendship Centres is supporting the hiring of four navigators to connect people with life-saving treatment, harm reduction and culturally sensitive wraparound services.

Navigators have been hired in Edmonton, Calgary, Lethbridge and Grande Prairie with the support of the $400,000 grant. Workshops, naloxone training sessions and educational material will also be provided to staff at Friendship Centres in 21 communities throughout the province. These new tools will support greater substance-use awareness and prevention and strengthen access to culturally appropriate services for Indigenous people…

Edmonton John Howard Society and Edmonton Police Services – Victims Services Unit Survey

A community review on current court support services for victims of crime. As part of this review, they are conducting a needs assessment with community organizations to identify issues with the current court orientation process – or lack of a standardized process for court orientation, support and accompaniment. They expect to complete this review by September 15th which will inform our work towards the development of  a standardized court orientation program for Edmonton. They are asking you to fill out a Needs Assessment to help them clearly understand the current system(s) and how we can work together as a community to better serve victims of crime

Alberta Government Survey – Standards for Addiction and Mental Health Services and Treatment Facility

Addiction and mental health services engagement Help establish safety, quality and consumer protection standards for addiction and mental health services and treatment facilities. Complete the survey to provide your input on ways to better protect people seeking addiction and mental health services Deadline September 14, 2018

Homeless Hub Without a Home 2018 2nd National Survey

Does your organization work with youth experiencing homelessness? Register for the Without a Home 2018 2nd National Survey on Youth Homelessness to help make an impact on the lives of youth while informing program and policy solutions.

McIntyre_Media Film (Dis)placed: Indigenous Youth and the Child Welfare System

Canada’s colonial practice of forcibly removing Indigenous children from their families did not end with the closing of Indian residential schools. It continues today in the form of provincial and territorial child welfare systems, which remove Indigenous children and youth at alarmingly high rates.This film features the voices of Indigenous youth as they reflect on their prior involvement with child welfare and share their multiple strategies of resistance to assimilation and state control. Adding to these insights, First Nations child advocate Cindy Blackstock traces the term ‘neglect’, the main rationale for child welfare removals, to its roots in the residential school system, and points to laws that codify structural discrimination, the leading cause of child welfare (dis)placements.With Tyler Blackface, Cindy Blackstock, Tia Ledesma, Brianna Olsen and Donovan Waskahat.

PolicyWise – 4 New Reports

The Child and Youth Data Laboratory Longitudinal Project, Experiences of Albertan Children and Youth over Time, 2005/06 to 2010/11, focuses on understanding the experiences of Albertan children and youth as they develop. This project takes a multi-year, cumulative look at the service use of Albertan children and youth.
Four new reports have been produced as part of this project:
  • A profile of service use patterns for Albertan children and youth (aged 0 to 17) receiving Family Support for Children with Disabilities
  • A profile of service use patterns for Albertans with Cerebral Palsy (aged 0 to 25)
  • A profile of service use patterns for Albertans with Autism Spectrum Disorder
    (aged 0 to 25)
  • Transition experiences of clients moving between the Income Support program and the Income Support Learners program: Income Support Transitions
  • In addition, a special report was released. In collaboration with the Ministry of Community and Social Services, and the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Cross Ministry Committee, data were analyzed on how children and youth with FASD were served by provincial programs in Alberta. These results highlight opportunities for collaboration and integration in service delivery. In particular, almost half of the children and youth with FASD received a complex constellation of services that included Child Intervention and other disability services. These results will serve as a baseline in evaluating Alberta’s FASD 10-Year Strategic Plan.

PolicyWise onYouth Mental Health Service Integrated Hubs

Posted August 2018
Community-based Mental Health Service Hubs for Youth (Integrated Hubs) are designed to integrate health and social services under one roof in a youth-friendly environment. The majority of mental health concerns emerge before the age of 24 and current systems of care are split between child and adult services. Integrated Hubs are an emerging practice to address service access issues that youth experience.
PolicyWise is excited to share the project background and next steps of their Integrated Hubs project. Learn more on their website.

ALIGN Resource Bulletin Cannabis in the Workplace Employer OHS Resources

OHS Managers are seeking answers on medical use of cannabis in the workplace and how to address recreational use of cannabis in relation to the workplace. This resource bulletin includes extensive cannabis in the workplace  articles, resource and training for Human Service OHS Managers to help support their employees, workplace safety, policy development and safety protocols.

Exhibitors Applications Open for Calgary Volunteer Fair

The cost to register will be $35 per organization, which will include a table and chairs for your organization’s area and as much support as we can possibly give you to ensure that your experience is nothing short of excellent.

Burns Memorial Fund The Experience of the Collaborative Funders’ Table: A Learning Brief

Burns Memorial Fund The Experience of the Collaborative Funders’ Table: A Learning Brief
This learning brief is designed for grant-making and other funding organizations engaged in or thinking about participating in a funding collaborative. It describes the CFT funding model and processes, highlights lessons learned and challenges that arose along the way, and captures the impact and benefits of collaborative funding. The CFT members hope that sharing these experiences will help to inform other efforts to collectively increase the impact of investments in social change. To view the learning brief, please click on the image below.

Survey Well-Being and Resiliency Evaluation Framework Deadline August 3, 2018.

Thank you for providing feedback on the Well-Being and Resiliency Evaluation Framework. This framework accompanies the provincial Well-being and Resiliency Framework, and seeks to develop an evaluative reporting and monitoring plan to determine the extent that primary prevention and early intervention programs funded by Children’s Services are achieving outcomes. We greatly value your time and feedback.

Survey Purpose
The purpose of this survey is to gain a better understanding of community agencies’ experience and perspective as it relates to well-being and resilience overarching outcomes; to clearly articulate measurable outcomes; and identify common indicators.

Voluntary and Confidential
Your participation in this survey is voluntary. The information you provide will be used only for the indicated purpose in conformity with the Alberta Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIPP). Your answers are confidential and will be used only for project purposes. Following ethical standards, the information you provide will be stored in a secure database for five years and then destroyed. The results of this project will be analyzed and reported only in group format. No single person or agency will be identifiable.

Dates and Further Information
This survey will take approximately 10-15 minutes to complete. Please complete this survey by August 3, 2018.

If you have questions about the survey, please let us know at any time. You can reach PolicyWise for Children & Families by contacting the manager of this project, Naomi Parker:

Take Survey

See Previous Correspondence Re Resiliency Framework (Previously Early Intervention – Prevention and Early Intervention Framework)

ALIGN Requesting Members Input on Bill 17 Financial Impacts

July 19, 2018

Dear ALIGN Members:

RE:  Budget 2018/2019

Once again I am asking for information on your financial situation and how Bill 17 has impacted you. The Ministry of Children Services has been asking about the pressure points and where they may need to focus their allocation from the budget. In order to advocate on your behalf in the right direction I need help from you.

As you are all aware there was an allocation of money in the Children Services Budget for contracted agencies.  On budget day we were told the amount and the way it will be distributed would be announced later.

Now we have been asked by government for some information that will allow them to focus the allocation of money.    They are trying to determine the most impact for the dollars and wonder what is needed most at this time.  They are specifically interested in Bill 17 impacts.

I have been asked to survey you again.  I will do that with a reminder that “no information equals – no problem”.  So I really encourage you to answer the questions as silence also means things are all ok.  If you cannot answer or feel that you have negligible impacts please just send me a quick note saying that.


  1. What sector do you provide most of your services in? Contract foster care; group care; EI; kinship care, family support, youth work
  2. Now that we are 6 months into this year can you tell us what impact the statutory holiday pay has had? What did you pay out in 2017 vs 2018?
  3. Can you tell the difference in your Overtime costs? 2017 vs. 2018?  What is it?
  4. Have you made different agreements with your staff to offset payout costs to staff for overtime? For example some agencies no longer allow taking time off, they  will only pay out overtime
  5. What other drivers are your financial pressures a result of?
  6. How are you managing the financial pressures? Have you closed services or deceased services?

Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions, if you have any questions, please send me an email

Please fill in the questions and send them back to me, I need to have them back by August. 1, 2018.


Rhonda Barraclough

Executive Director, ALIGN

See All ALIGN Correspondence Related to Bill 17

July 2018 Updates to Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD)

Autism Calgary FSCD Program To Realign with Legislation
In response to pressures from families and community groups, the Government of Alberta is committing to changing policy and practice to appropriately realign the Family Support for Disabilities program to legislation and to better serve individuals and families living with Autism and other disabilities…

The Star Calgary July 18, 2018
‘Parent coaching’ no longer required under Alberta’s special-needs program
Community and Social Services Minister Irfan Sabir said come next month, the sessions for parents will no longer be required — a move he said is designed to ease the burden on parents.  “Parents will no longer be required to be involved in parent training or coaching,” Sabir said via phone Friday. “We will end all references to that kind of model in our practice and our policy…”

Inclusion Alberta – An update on Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD) July 3, 2018
Overview of changes happening immediately and changes happening later this year

WHAT WE HEARD Feedback from parents, families and advocates in the Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD) program June 2018

Letter from Minister Sabir to FSCD Parents June 29, 2018

More listening sessions will also be held across the province to identify improvements and allow FSCD staff to hear additional feedback.


The Muttart Foundation Funding For Your Organization’s Professional Development

Are you looking for funding for your organization’s professional development? The Muttart Foundation has two bursary programs open to registered charities working in the social service and early childhood education and care fields.  This bursary program allows charities to apply for funding to allow their staff members to attend courses offered through publicly funded educational institutions or non-profit organizations.  We sometimes look at providing support to allow staff members to attend conferences that relate to their work at the organization.

In the past, we’ve provided funding to allow individuals to obtain computer training, management training, take part in leadership programs, and courses that allow them to brush up on their knowledge and skills to better serve their clients.  I’ve attached a link to our bursary application form if you are interested in applying.

Contact Info
Should you have further questions about our bursary programs, please feel free to contact em.  I would be happy to talk to you about a potential course you may be interested in attending or help walk you through our bursary application form.  I would suggest you call me before you fill in the application form to ensure that your organization and the course you are applying for are a fit within our guidelines. I look forward to hearing from you and please feel free to share this with other registered charities that would fit in our guidelines.
email –>
phone – (780)421-0316
web page –

See More Grants, Bursaries and Awards

Powerful Awareness Video The Impact of Exposure to Violence on a Child’s Developing Brain

Dr Bruce Perry (The Child Trauma Academy) and Linda Chamberlain (Alaska Family Violence Prevention Project) discuss the the impact of exposure to violence on a child’s developing brain in this powerful awareness video available on NVR North Hampton, produced for the California Attorney General’s Office.

New Alberta Government Anti-Racism Community Grant Program

The new Anti-Racism Community Grant Program will provide $2 million to support grassroots initiatives that raise awareness and understanding of racism and its impact on all Albertans. This will also include funding to support anti-racism projects or initiatives specific to Indigenous peoples.

Submission deadlines for 2018-19:

  • Intake 1 – August 1, 2018
  • Intake 2 – November 1, 2018
  • Intake 3 – January 1, 2019

Submission deadlines for 2019-20 onward:

  • Intake 1 – March 1, 2019
  • Intake 2 – June 1, 2019
  • Intake 3 – September 1, 2019
  • Intake 4 – December 1, 2019

See Additional Human Service/Nonprofit/Community Grants, Awards and Bursaries Here

Working Stronger Workplace Mental Health Conference Edmonton September 17 – 18, 2018

This September, the Canadian Mental Health Association, Alberta Division is hosting a workplace conference designed to improve mental health outcomes in Alberta workplaces.

Working StrongerEquipping Albertans for better workplace mental health is two days of networking, information exchange and dialogue that will advance our efforts to support healthier workplaces across the province. It brings together the most creative and inspiring mental health thinkers and leaders in the field.

The conference – September 17 & 18, 2018 in Edmonton – will feature keynote speakers, workshops, panels, presentations, training opportunities, and exhibits.

This conference is ideally suited to organizations and individuals interested in learning more and becoming champions of workplace mental health in Alberta.

Public Action A Stronger, Safer Tomorrow Addresses the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention’s Recommendations

Correspondence from CA Minister Danielle Larivee to ALIGN ED June 28, 2018

Today, our government released a public action plan that will help protect children and support families. You can read our news release online.

 A Stronger, Safer Tomorrow highlights 39 actions – including 16 this fiscal year – the Alberta government is taking to improve services for Indigenous families, increase supports for children, youth and caregivers, and address the funding gap on reserve.

This public action plan was developed with Indigenous leaders and communities, as well as front-line partners who work directly with vulnerable or at-risk children and youth. I would like to thank all who participated for their passion and dedication to improving the safety and well-being of children, youth and families in this province.

Our government is taking immediate action. By March 31, 2019, we will have implemented 16 actions to address urgent needs and lay the foundation for important changes to follow. These include new funding for youth suicide prevention programs and Indigenous-led early intervention and prevention services. We will also fully implement Jordan’s Principle and pilot a new assessment tool for kinship caregivers.

Short-term actions, to be completed by 2020, target specific services and supports to improve the wellbeing of Indigenous communities and peoples. Long-term actions involve work with Indigenous partners to develop local solutions and more responsive, integrated services by 2022. This supports our work to hold the federal government accountable, which will be essential to creating significant, lasting change.

This public action plan addresses all the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention’s final recommendations, and is a decisive step forward for Alberta.

It is our roadmap to a province where all children and youth are supported to reach their full potential, where all Indigenous families can access the supports they need in ways that are reflective and respectful of their culture, and where all Indigenous peoples can access the same levels of support, on- or off-reserve.

Our government will continue to work together with Indigenous leaders and communities, as well as other partners, to implement this public action plan. More information will be shared with you soon through your regular communications channels and updates will be posted at

I am committed to reconciliation and to working with Indigenous partners and child intervention stakeholders to make meaningful, lasting changes to the child intervention system. I look forward to working with you to help create a stronger, safer tomorrow for children, youth and families across Alberta.

Sincerely, Danielle Larivee

See More ALIGN Communications/Initiative Regarding Child Review Panel

The 2018 Boland Survey is open until August 31!

The Boland Survey is the only source of nonprofit sector compensation data. Make informed comparisons and predictions on salary and human resource practices – including flex time, on-boarding, paid time off, professional development practices, employee recognition, and – new in 2018! – recruitment practices.

Complete the survey before August 31 to be sure your organization’s information is included and you are eligible to purchase the comprehensive report.

Register now to enter your data!

Self Care for Human Services Workers Bulletin June 2018

At ALIGN, we know our members make employee health and safety a priority. To assist with that, we maintain a number of online directories so agency directors and staff can easily access the tools and information they need to address their agency/staffing and or personal needs. This bulletin includes recent additions to our directory.

Host Your MP – iMPact Day: The Social Impact Challenge

iMPact Day is an opportunity for MPs to get an in-depth primer about what organizations actually do and how they go about doing it. Time spent with board members, staff, and volunteers will give MPs an appreciation of the wide range of roles we play and the work it takes to keep an organization going. MPs will see first-hand how day-to-day operations are impacted by federal regulations and policies – everything from your business activities to how you access grants and contributions.

This challenge is a move towards creating a more enabling environment for the social good sector and providing organizations a seat at the policy table. It will provide an opportunity to improve communication and strengthen the relationship between the sector and the government in order to better serve communities together – leveraging tax-payer dollars, by working efficiently and effectively for sustainable change and growth. Spending a day with an organization will help MPs draw direct links between federal policies and the impact those policies have on organizations, communities, and individuals in their constituencies.

Host Your MP

iMPact Day aims to build new bridges between the social good sector and the government in order to learn from each other and to help build the sector’s capacity to succeed. Our goal is to have as many MPs as possible, from every political party, participate in this annual challenge. But the only way we can make this happen is if charities, nonprofits, and social enterprises participate.

We need you! Imagine Canada will coordinate the MPs and provide you with background information and suggestions for hosting. If you’re interested and willing to host an MP for a day, please contact Kira Balson on our Public Policy team.

Volunteer Opportunities Fair Edmonton September 2018

Recruiting Volunteers… Hosting Placements/Internships?
 This fair provides MacEwan University students with opportunities to learn from you (non-profit, charitable organizations, on-campus organizations and other community partners). We host this event in September to allow students to work around their academic schedule for volunteer time and explore placement opportunities. Students are interested in what you do and what types of opportunities may be available to them.
Edmonton September 19, 2018; 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Caregiver Self Assessment/Employment Standards Exceptions June 12, 2018

E.D. Rhonda Barraclough
In May, Bruce and I attended a meeting  with the Deputy Minister Jeff Parr of Minister of Labour, DM Darlene Bowsema of Children Services , DM Shannon Marchand of Community and Support Services, and some of their senior staff.  At that  meeting we were told that the Caregivers Regulation will apply in all cases of residential care/24 hour operation and crisis support – like CSD workers or contract foster care agencies with emergent situations.   Below is a link to a flow chart that will help make those decisions as to when it is appropriate or not to use this regulation for your staffing models.

AM I A CAREGIVER ? is now available on Alberta Labour Standards Website: Caregivers – Employment Standards Exceptions
There are special provisions to the rules outlined in the Employment Standards Code for home care and residential care employees.

This tool reflects the standards for caregivers that have been in place for several years. These rules were not amended by the Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act and it is my hope that by sharing this tool we may be able to address any confusion going forward. To assist in clarifying their application for employers in your sector,  I encourage you to share with your association members and sector colleagues
Lenore Neudorf, Assistant Deputy Minister, Strategy and Policy Labour, Government of Alberta June 11, 2018Update Regarding Bill 17 – E.D. Rhonda Barraclough June 7, 2018

See All ALIGN  Bill 17 Communications
Bill 17 – Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act


Feedback Session for the Resiliency Framework Calgary June 22, 2018

Feedback Session for the Resiliency Framework (previously named the Prevention and Early Intervention Framework,)
Calgary June 22, 2018 10:00 am – 2:00 pm (lunch will be provided)

In follow up to consultations held in May on the Resiliency Framework, you are invited to attend a session with PolicyWise to provide consultation on the evaluation framework that has been developed to support provincial implementation of the Resiliency Framework. Your feedback will be valuable as we move forward with this initiative. Thank you

Enhancing Prevention and Early Intervention

Supports and services towards prevention and early intervention are equally as important as providing quality child protection services in helping to ensure positive outcomes for children, youth and families. The Ministry continues to work collaboratively with community partners to ensure the delivery of a wide range of effective prevention and early intervention programs and services. In 2016/2017, the Ministry initiated a process to redevelop its Prevention and Early Intervention Framework to The Well-Being and Resiliency Framework, in order to ensure alignment with current and emerging trends, research, and Indigenous worldviews. The redeveloped Framework will support decision-making in the Ministry for funding and service delivery; define key elements of services; communicate how the program provides prevention and early intervention; and, outline a process and criteria for the review and improvement of programs and services. Collaboration with Indigenous partners, community agencies and regional staff is underway to ensure Indigenous ways of knowing, recommendations from the Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention and current research are incorporated.

Reaching families early, even as early as pregnancy, is an important element of success in the design of proven prevention programs. The emerging body of research on the science of brain development supports the importance of initiating prevention services early to support parent-child attachment and the social-emotional development of infants and young children. For the greatest success, the Framework will be redeveloped to meet the needs of families at multiple levels – across a continuum of needs. The Framework will continue to be based on a continuum of prevention and early intervention service domains: Child Development and Wellbeing; Caregiver Capacity Building; and, Social Connections and Supports.

To support provincial implementation of the Well-Being and Resiliency Framework,  an ongoing monitoring and evaluation plan will be developed to ensure the expected short, medium and long-term outcomes are clearly articulated to be specific, measureable, reasonably achievable, relevant and timely. The monitoring and evaluation plan will include indicators and measures for the continuum of services; processes to measure and report on the outcomes and effectiveness of these programs for Indigenous participants; and, support regular reporting on the achievement of the overarching outcome of helping infants, children and youth be safe and reach their full potential. The redeveloped Framework is expected to be completed in Summer 2018, with implementation to follow in the fall. Given the emerging body of research and literature surrounding the enhancement of well-being and resiliency in families, the Framework is intended to be a ‘living document’, that will live on-line, providing the ability to update information as necessary as part of the implementation and evaluation processes.

Bill 30 Presentation: OHS Act Changes

For those of you unable to attend, here is a copy of the PowerPoint presentation on Bill 30: Act to Protect the Health and Well-being of Working Albertans OHS Act Changes presented by the Ministry of Labor at our annual membership meeting May 4, 201

The Indigenous Thought Leaders Series 2017/2018 Video’s Now Available!

The Indigenous Thought Leaders Series is intended to Enhance Indigenous Innovations and Relationships in Child Intervention Service Delivery.
Selected Elders, advisers, and service providers share Indigenous teachings and current practices in work with Indigenous children, families, and individuals. The presentations showcase specific culturally-based approaches to practice and ceremony with indigenous service users. The individual presentations include teachings from highly respected elders and knowledge keepers in Alberta. Various Alberta-based programs providing culturally appropriate and effective services are highlighted. The presentations give the viewer the opportunity to explore how they can utilize the guidelines and principles in policy development and service delivery.

See Additional Indigenous Protocol Process Video’s

Unless otherwise indicated, copyright in these oral history presentations are held by the presenters. You may download this content for your personal or non-commercial use but only in an unaltered form, with the copyright acknowledged and citing the name of the presenter, the date of the presentation and citing ALIGN Indigenous Thought Leaders Day Series. Anyone wishing to make this content accessible through their web site is encouraged to link to the required content on this site. ALIGN Association of Community Services reserves the right to revoke this permission at any time. Permission is not given for any commercial use or sale of this material.  It is further understood that no copies of the vidoes may be made and nothing can be used from them in any published form without permission of the original source


Indigenous Protocol Process Video’s

The following video’s are part of the Indigenous Thought Leaders Series.

Selected Elders, advisers, and service providers shared Indigenous teachings and current practices in work with Indigenous children, families, and individuals. These informative protocol videos showcase specific culturally-based approaches to practice and ceremony with indigenous service users. The individual presentations include teachings from highly respected elders and knowledge keepers in Alberta.

See additional Presentation Video’s from The Indigenous Thought Leaders Series

Unless otherwise indicated, copyright in these oral history presentations are held by the presenters. You may download this content for your personal or non-commercial use but only in an unaltered form, with the copyright acknowledged and citing the name of the presenter, the date of the presentation and citing ALIGN Indigenous Thought Leaders Day Series. Anyone wishing to make this content accessible through their web site is encouraged to link to the required content on this site. ALIGN Association of Community Services reserves the right to revoke this permission at any time. Permission is not given for any commercial use or sale of this material.  It is further understood that no copies of the vidoes may be made and nothing can be used from them in any published form without permission of the original source

Memo to ALIGN Membership Re: Occupational Health and Safety Grant

Memo to ALIGN Membership Re: Occupational Health and Safety Grant

ALIGN has some good news to share with our member agencies. We were successful in obtaining a 2018 Occupational Health and Safety Innovation and Engagement Grant in partnership with the Alberta Association for Safety Partnerships (AASP) from the Ministry of Labour to provide free training to representatives of member agencies who are interested in developing and implementing a formal Health and Safety Management System.

With the many changes brought about by Bill 17 in January 2018, and the amendments coming to the Occupational Health and Safety Act on June 1, 2018 through Bill 30: An Act to Protect the Health and Well-being of Working Albertans; agencies will have had many new things to learn and become educated in as well as continuing to do the necessary every day work of supporting Alberta’s most vulnerable children and families.

Learn more about our partners and what this means to your agency:  Read full ALIGN OHS Training Grant Memo Spring 2018 pdf

Training is intended for member agency directors, supervisors or OHS representatives involved in applying the new OHS Act. It will be offered in Edmonton, Red Deer, Calgary and Lethbridge. Training will consist of three full days that build on each other with assignments in between, commencing in June 2018 with the second day in September 2018 and third one in the November/ December 2018. A fourth day for overview and review will be provided early in 2019. Dates to be determined. A strong commitment to attending all the training sessions is needed; training will be free and manuals supplied, individuals will be provided the support they need to be successful.

Once the training is completed and the agency has successfully developed and implemented a health and safety program that meets provincial standards, they will be in a position to apply for a Certificate of Recognition (COR) or a Small Employer COR (SECOR). The COR certifies that the employer’s health and safety management system has been evaluated by a certified auditor and met the requirements as per the provincial standards. Certificates are issued by Alberta Labour and are co-signed by Alberta Association for Safety Partnerships (AASP). Achieving and maintaining a valid COR is required for earning a financial incentive through the WCB Partnerships in Injury Reduction Program.

Registration will be on a first come first serve basis and will be available middle of May please check the ALIGN training page after May 15th for dates and locations . Only one individual per agency (OHS rep) will be accepted into the program as class size is limited. Larger agencies may place a second person on a wait list. If you have any questions please contact Cathy Mitchell at

Related Resources

Workforce & OHS Initiatives
Alberta Association for Safety Partnerships(AASP) as a Certifying Partner (Road Map To COR).
Bill 17 – Fair and Family-Friendly Workplaces Act
Bill 30 Occupational Health and Safety Act
Foundations of Caregiver Support (FCS)
Healthy Workplace, Wellness and Safety in the Child and Family Services Sector
Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)
National Standard Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace – COR/WCB
Workforce Alliance: Cross Association Workforce Survey

ALIGN Meeting CI Review Panel Feedback for Prevention & Early Intervention Framework

We have been invited to provide feedback to the revisions and update of the Prevention and Early Intervention Framework.  We recognize the short notice of these meetings however it is unavoidable if we want to have the opportunity to provide feedback prior to the completion deadline of June 2018. Take the opportunity to have a say:

Prevention and Early Intervention Framework
Edmonton – May 24,2018

10:00 am – 12:00pm
ALIGN Association
#250,8330-82 Avenue,Edmonton

Registration Link

Prevention and Early Intervention Framework
Calgary -May 29, 2018
10:00 am-12:00 pm
Hull Services
2266 Woodpark Avenue SW,Calgary
Registration Link

Jon Reeves Presentation on Family Service Caseload Trends 2015-16 to 2017-18

Child and Family Service (CFS) Regions Caseload Trends 1015-16 to 2017-18 presentation by Jon Reeves, Executive Director – Child Intervention – Southern Alberta  May 2018 at the ALIGN Membership Meeting.

Indigenous Services Canada 24/7 First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line Now Available Online

The Government of Canada supports mental health wellbeing for First Nations and Inuit through dedicated resources, including culturally competent counselling services by the First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line.

Indigenous Services Canada is pleased to announce that the 24/7 First Nations and Inuit Hope for Wellness Help Line has expanded to include mental wellness counselling and crisis intervention through online chat.

Many people, and particularly youth, are more at ease using the internet and handheld devices to access services and seek support. Online chat is the next step in expanding access to qualified and culturally competent mental wellness counselling and crisis intervention services.

The Hope for Wellness Help Line was established as a specific resource for First Nations and Inuit to provide immediate, culturally competent telephone counselling, 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is available in English, French and upon request in Cree, Ojibway, and Inuktitut. Online chat services are currently available in English and French, with expansion to Indigenous languages currently being explored as this new service launches.

New Resource: Trauma Informed Practice & The Opioid Crisis, A Discussion Guide For Health Care And Social Service Providers

This resource focuses on addressing one facet of the opioid crisis in Canada. Research has shown that the vast majority of individuals who struggle with opioid misuse and addiction have current or past experiences of trauma and violence. Those experiences of trauma and violence are often gendered, in that women, men, trans and gender diverse people have different kinds of experiences.

Trauma-informed practice is an approach to care that integrates an understanding of trauma into all levels of care, system engagement, workforce development, organizational policy and cross-sectoral collaborations.

This resource builds upon the Trauma Informed Practice Guide ( by BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services in 2013, which have been adopted and implemented in many health authorities and other jurisdictions across the province.

See More Opioid Resources

PolicyWise Announces Regional Collaborative Service Delivery (RCSD) Learning Series!

PolicyWise working closely with Alberta Education – School and Community Supports for Children and Youth Branch to share emerging, promising, and leading practices among the 17 RCSD Regions. The RCSD Learning Series aims to capture and share experiential knowledge and wisdom and mobilize capacity. The series addresses the outcomes of the partnership work of Alberta Education, Alberta Children’s Services, Alberta Community and Social Services, and Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services to build system capacity for learning environments that are welcoming, caring, respectful, and safe and collaborative systems.

The presentations in this series explore a range of topics, thanks to the following:
  • Aspen Collaborative Services – Coalition 4 Success (coming soon!)
  • Calgary and Area RCSD –  Toward Exemplary Practice
  • Central Alberta RCSD – School Snapshot Summary: A Collective Decision Making Tool
  • Central East Collaborative RCSD – Connections Clinic
  • City of Edmonton RCSD – Caregiver Education Series (coming soon!)
  • Réseau RCSD – From Assessment to Consultation
  • Southwest Alberta RCSD – Level Three Service Centre
Each RCSD contributed to the development of a video presentation and two forms of knowledge mobilization materials:
  • Research brief: designed to offer an overview of evidence and leading practices that align with the presentation and that can inform strategic planning.
  • Top take-aways: offers a summary of key points from the presentation.
All of these materials are now available on the PolicyWise website.

ALIGN Meetings – Feedback Session for CI Ministerial Panel Recommendation #7,9,11, Calgary May 7, 2018

We have been invited to provide feedback to the Child intervention Ministerial Panel Recommendations #7,#9,#11. Several types of opportunities are being presented to organizations across the province to have input into the action plan for these recommendations. We recognize the short notice of these meetings however it is unavoidable if we want to have the opportunity to provide feedback prior to the action plan completion deadline of June 2018. Take the opportunity to have a say;These session are gather feedback for the following recommendations; 

CI Ministerial Panel Recommendation #7,9,11.
Calgary May 7, 2018
1:00 pm-3:00 pm
2323-32 Ave NE,Calgary
Registration Link

CI Ministerial Panel Recommendation #7,9,11.
Edmonton May 8,2018
1:30 pm – 3:30 pm
Ellerslie Rugby Park
11004 Ellerslie Road, Edmonton
Registration Link

#7. Work with Indigenous communities historic trauma healing services, which include access to ceremony and cultural healing.

#9. Mental health and addiction services culturally appropriate, accessible services for children, youth and families in the child intervention system, with a focus on expanding access (including for Albertans living in remote communities, rural areas, on- and off-reserve) to preventative mental health and addictions services and treatment, including secure services. The Government of Alberta should prioritize implementation of recommendations of the Valuing Mental Health report to improve services for children and families before, during and after their involvement in the child intervention system.

#11.Improve transitional supports for youth in care to adult supports,ans post secondary opportunities that will help them succeed in life. this would expand supports already in place.

Prevention and Early Intervention Framework

Nicole McFadyen ALIGN –

View All Correspondence Regarding ALIGN & Child Review Panel

New From City of Lacombe: Online Volunteer Handbook

Due to the changing nature of volunteerism in Alberta, the City of Lacombe recognized the need to create an online volunteer handbook that provides resources for volunteers and resources for managing volunteers, as well as community information and trends. This online handbook provides links with answers to the many questions that may arise within volunteer positions and not-for-profit organizations, and provides resources for both new and experienced volunteers. Here you can also find community information, as well as recent Canadian and Albertan trends pertaining to volunteerism.

Share Your Input! Autism Research Ethics Task Force’s Collaborative Project

Autism Canada has been asked by Dr. Racine, Dr. Weiss, Dr. Cascio and the Autism Research Ethics Task Force to invite you to get involved in their collaborative project.
The Autism Research Ethics Task Force invites you to follow along and give feedback on a collaborative project to develop a new model for ethics in research on autism. Their goal is to develop best practices for respectful and inclusive autism research ethics. They are seeking your help and input to share your experiences with research, positive or negative. They are particularly interested in the experiences of autistic Canadians.

“Person-oriented research ethics” is a term the task force uses to describe a model for conducting research focused on the unique perspectives and needs of the people with whom researchers engage. The goal of this task force is to create a model for person-oriented research ethics for studies involving participants on the autism spectrum.

They are asking people on the spectrum, family members and caregivers, autism researchers, and autism professionals to be part of a community engagement group for this project, which will be led by a collaborative task force. A task force is a temporary group made up of people with common goals and objectives within a specific time frame. This task force will be working on a report addressing this person-oriented research ethics model. This report will suggest best practices researchers can use when doing research with participants on the autism spectrum.

You can read more about the project or watch their video here.
If you would like to be updated about this project and have the opportunity to provide feedback, please sign up for the mailing list here.

Limited Number of Bursaries available for Now We Are Stronger Community Mental Health Conference June 4 and 5 Edmonton

CMHA Alberta Division is pleased to offer a limited number of bursaries to support individuals with personal lived experience of mental health challenges or illness or those with a family member/loved one with mental health challenges, or representatives of local nonprofit organizations who require financial support to attend Now We Are Stronger 2018 (Edmonton). Applicants must live or work within the greater Edmonton region.

Please see below for more information about the conference:

CMHA Alberta Division appreciates the connections it has with its regions, partners and stakeholders in the Mental Health landscape here in Alberta.  We are  hoping to bring together more than 300 participants from across all sectors to learn, grow and understand the changing landscape related to mental health and wellness.

This conference is two days of networking, information exchange and dialogue that will advance the work in our dynamic fields. With a focus on indigenous mental health, rural and remote community mental health, and child, youth and family mental health, this conference is ideally suited to organizations and individuals working or interacting within the field of mental health and mental illness. This conference is offering a robust and stimulating program of keynote speakers, presentations, panel discussions and excellent networking opportunities. Delegates will have the opportunity to choose from many carefully curated workshops.

Deadline: May 15, 2018

Eligibility: Open to individuals with personal lived experience of mental health challenges or illness or those with a family member/loved one with mental health challenges, or representatives of local nonprofit organizations who require financial support to attend Now We Are Stronger 2018. Applicants must reside in the greater Edmonton area.

Purpose: To provide financial support individuals and nonprofits to attend Now We Are Stronger 2018 who do not have the financial means and may not otherwise receive funding to attend.

Important Information: Those who qualify for a bursary are required to pay a $50.00 registration fee. The bursary covers the remainder of the registration cost.

Please note: The bursary only applies to the conference registration cost. Any other expenses incurred for attending the conference are the bursary recipient’s responsibility.

You can see the conference program HERE and you can register at the conference rate  HERE.

If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact our conference coordinator Michele Rowan at

Send completed Bursary Application to


Letter from ALIGN E.D. Regarding Bill 17 Update April 16, 2018

Hi all,

We have not provided an update since March and feel it necessary to do so.  We were fairly optimistic that we had an agreement with the Ministry of Labour as to how to provide some flexibility for the 24/7 operations and the crisis driven intervention work.  Under Bill 17 if the agencies are to work as defined in the legislation it would decrease the ability for staff to flex their time and the agencies would have to put restrictions on work schedules due to the overtime costs, and that is not in the best interest of the families those agencies are contracted to serve. At this time our optimism is waning.

We have been waiting for a response from the Ministry of Labour (since March) and to date we have not received one.  The staff has been changed there as well so it is frustrating to figure out who is doing what.  Our partners in the Ministry of Children Services are just as frustrated.

We recognize that this delay is likely increasing your overtime costs or alternatively decreasing service.  We also remind you that there have been no variances or regulation changes made therefore by the letter of the law you should be complying with what it says.  If this is creating a hardship to your agency or your families, we encourage you to speak with your contract managers and us.  Send us a note as we are sending the example to the Ministry of CS and Labour so they are aware of the challenges.

Bruce and I are I meeting with the Deputy Minister to speak with her about this issue.

I terms of funding.  We are trying to figure out what the budget has to offer agencies and for what.  This will take some time.

In order to assess and advocate accurately we will be sending out a request for further information with respect to the impacts of Bill 17.  WE STRONGLY URGE YOU TO RESPOND. We will be asking – what is your cost of statutory pay this year over last year for the first quarter of the year?  What is your actual cost of overtime last year and this year for the first quarter?  Did you have any increases in your contract?  Did you discuss the added costs of Bill 17 with your contract manager?  If so, what was the outcome of that discussion?

It is really important that you send us the information we are asking for.  It is difficult to discuss these issues without real information and numbers, as we are constantly asked for them.

If you have any questions please email me or call 780 233.5459

See Previous Related Correspondence

ALIGN Members Staffing Model Survey Deadline April 30, 2018

Good afternoon Everyone,

Thank you very much to those who responded , we appreciate your quick respond, Those who has not responded yet, please do so. ALIGN needs the information ASAP. ALIGN’s responsibility is to advocate for our membership. In order to be able to speak on your behalf we need the complete picture and have specific information from you.  We are asking member agencies who have group care contracts with Children Services questions regarding their staffing models. Surveying our membership for the information will be the quickest and most accurate means of getting the information we need in preparation for Bill 30. Please take a moment to complete an email with your answers and send back to Cathy Mitchell at by April 13, 2017 who will then complete a summary roll for ALIGN to use in their discussions. If you have any questions please call Cathy at 780 915 7156.

What type of agency and population served?

How many group care facilities does your agency have contracted with Children Services?

If your agency is a large facility, how many units have differing staffing models. Please describe.

Of your facilities, how many have a single staffing model for any portion of the day?

For those that have a single staffing model, is it overnight only or other shifts as well?

If more, please describe. In your assessment; how many of these single staffing models provide services to youth that could potentially pose a risk to staff?

Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions as in as much detail and as accurately as you can so we can advocate on your behalf with a clear picture of the situation.

Sincerely, Rhonda Barraclough Executive Director

See More on ALIGN and Bill 30

SAGE Community Based Organization Data Readiness Survey

Secondary Analysis to Generate Evidence (SAGE) is conducting an assessment of the needs of the non-profit community and we would really appreciate your input in the questions below! SAGE is a data repository developed by PolicyWise for Children & Families to facilitate collaboration among stakeholders via linking, managing, and sharing of sensitive data in an ethical manner.

PDD Updates

Alberta government is working closely with people with disabilities, families, service providers and advocates to determine the scope, timing and content of the review. More details will be shared after further discussions with the community.

Get involved

They  want to hear your suggestions for the review

  • what issues and challenges should be discussed during the review
  • where, when and how the review activities should take place

There are 3 different ways to fill out and return the survey. Choose the way that works best for you.


Minister of Community and Social Services Irfan Sabir issued the following statement in response to the report from the fatality inquiry into the death of Betty Anne Gagnon who received services funded by the Persons with Developmental Disabilities program: April 5, 2018

ALIGN Association of Community Services will be having their Membership General Meeting May 4, 2018

ALIGN Association of Community Services will be having their Membership General Meeting May 4, 2018 10-4pm

Radisson Red Deer 6500 67 St, Red Deer, AB T4P 1A2

We look forward to having representatives of the Ministry of Children Services to join us

Jon Reeves- Provincial Director, Child Intervention Delivery

Rae-Ann Lajeunesse – ADM Child Intervention

Mark Hatorri – ADM Family and Community Resilience

Please register using the following link:

Save the Date October 23-26, 2018 Calgary The Future of Child Welfare in Canada

9th Biennial PCWC Gathering National Conference: co-sponsored by the Provincial and Territorial Directors of Child Welfare

Bear Witness Day May 10, 2018

Show your support and “Bear Witness” to Jordan’s Principle Implementation by bringing your bears to daycare, school or work on May 10th. Host a Jordan’s Principle “bear birthday party,” coffee break or lunch to learn more about Jordan’s Principle and to honour Jordan River Anderson!

Building a Youth Policy for Canada

Help develop Canada’s first-ever Youth Policy. Shape the future of young people in Canada! The Government of Canada has launched consultations on a first-ever youth policy for Canada and needs your help. Youth  can submit their ideas through or join a youth dialogue taking place near them. Youth are also encouraged to host their own dialogues. Deadline Mid April 2018.


Wood’s Homes Journal – Evidence to Practice, Vol. 2, Issue 1 Now Available!

The Wood’s Homes Journal – Evidence to Practice (Vol. 2, Issue 1) is now available. Designed to showcase leading applied research and practice knowledge of mental health services for children, youth and families.

Letter from Danielle Larivee Minister Re: Child Review Panel March 2018

Letter from Danielle Larivee Minister March 2018

Dear Ms. Barraclough:

The Ministerial Panel on Child Intervention has delivered its final recommendations to help strengthen our Child Intervention system and improve the lives of children, youth and families across Alberta.
Over the past year, the Panel engaged in an unprecedented open, transparent engagement with stakeholders, families, communities, and Indigenous peoples.

Thank you for presenting to the Panel on behalf of ALIGN on June 14 and 15, 2017. Your input helped shape the Panel’s final recommendations, including those focused on reconciliation, sustaining cultural connections and better supporting families and communities. In doing so, you have helped create a brighter future for children and youth receiving Child Intervention services.

I look forward to reviewing these strong, consensus-based recommendations, which are available online at

Our government will continue working with families and communities, valued partners like ALIGN, and most importantly with First Nations and other Indigenous peoples to co-create a public action plan that puts these recommendations into practice. This plan will be released in June.
Thank you again for presenting to the Panel and helping support vulnerable children and families across Alberta.

Danielle Larivee

See More on ALIGN & Child Review Panel

Volunteer Appreciation Bulletin March 2018

This bulletin is full of great resources, tools, funding, appreciation gift ideas and more!

National Volunteer Week 2018
April 15 – 21, 2018

“Celebrate the Value of Volunteering – building confidence, competence, connections and community”.

Have Your Say on Albertans Regulation of Counselling Therapy

Correspondence from Nicole Imgrund-River’s Edge Counselling March 17, 2018

Over 3500 Counselling Therapists in Alberta have been working with the government for years to regulate the profession of Counselling Therapy in our province. Counselling is regulated in all 50 states and 4 provinces in Canada. People are often shocked to learn that anyone can call themselves a counsellor or therapist in Alberta, regardless of whether they have any education or training. This leads to devastating consequences for vulnerable people, of all ages, seeking help for mental health and addictions in our province. There is almost no cost to regulating Counselling Therapy and there is unprecedented political and public support for it.

So what is the problem? The problem is that while the government continues to express support for regulating Counselling Therapists under the HPA, it has stated that it is not a priority for legislative resources in the next year. As a matter of public safety, this is not acceptable to us. We have done the necessary work over the last decade to ensure regulation happens for Albertans and we will be ready for legislation this year.

We need your help in sending a message to government that this is a priority for Albertans. Regulation of Counselling Therapy will cause widespread positive, systemic change to mental health services in Alberta. Dr. David Swann agrees that it will help to achieve many of the recommendations of the Valuing Mental Health report of the Alberta Mental Health Review Committee.

Time is running out, as the window closes for the NDP to add regulation to their legislative agenda for this year.

ALIGN Members can support our efforts to regulate Counselling Therapy in Alberta in the following ways in the next couple of weeks:

  • forwarding our campaign link to your network
  • following us on Twitter and Facebook and sharing our updates
  • adding regulation of Counselling Therapy to your agenda when speaking with the government

Click Here To Send Your Online Message

The Regulation of Counselling Therapy in Alberta AUGUST 2017 FACT Alberta Steering Committee


Bill 30 Occupational Health and Safety Act: Help shape Alberta’s New Workplace Rules

The Occupational Health and Safety Act (the act) establishes the minimum standards for healthy and safe workplaces in Alberta. These laws are supported through the internal responsibility system and enforced through compliance activities. An Act to Protect the Health and Well-being of Working Albertans updates the act to better protect Albertans at work. Most of the changes come into effect June 1, 2018.The new Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act takes steps to protect workers from harassment and violence in all its forms. It also requires joint work site health and safety committees or a worker health and safety representative, depending on workforce size. The input will help shape specific rules around these new requirements to ensure the legislation is fair and balanced.

ALIGN  will be completing the survey – if member agencies have any questions please email
Albertans can provide written submissions until April 9, 2018. Specific rules regarding harassment and violence, as well as training and operation of the joint work site health and safety committees, will be added to OHS regulations on June 1.

Correspondence to ALIGN E.D. from Alberta Labour re Bill 30 March 2018

Dear Rhonda Barraclough,

Last year the Government of Albertatook an important step in improvingthe health and safety of workingAlbertans by modernizing the Occupational Health and Safety Act (Act) and aligning Alberta’s approach to workplace safety with that of other Canadian jurisdictions.  With valuable input from a wide range of industry and labour stakeholders, as well as ordinary Albertans, the new Act comes into force on June 1, 2018.

The new Act contains provisions on harassment and violence, and requires that many Albertan work sites have a joint work site health andsafety committee or a health andsafety representative.  Thesechanges better reflect the way that Albertans work, as well as the hazards that they face on the job.  They also bring to our province the best practices and requirements for health and safety from the rest of Canada; however, regulatory changes are needed to give full effect to these new provisions.

You/your organization is invited to provide written feedback on proposed regulation (see attachment) for workplace harassment and violence, as well as for the establishment, functions, and training for joint work site health and safety committees and health and safety representatives.

This Discussion Guide with proposed content is available here.  You may also view the Discussion Guide at Labour website.  Please fill out the questions in the attached guide and email to by April 9, 2018.

Your input will help to ensure that Alberta’s OHS legislation is clear, comprehensive, and meaningful.  Thank you in advance for participating and helping to make Alberta the best place to live and work in Canada.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Lenore Neudorf Assistant Deputy Minister Strategy and Policy Alberta Labour

Oprah spoke with Dr. Bruce Perry – “Life-Changing” Report on Childhood Trauma CBS “60 Minutes”

Last week on CBS’ “60 Minutes,” Oprah Winfrey reported on childhood trauma, and the emotional, developmental, and biological impact it has on a person for the rest of his or her life.

“Of all the stories I’ve ever done in my life, and all the experiences I’ve ever had, and people I’ve interviewed,” Oprah later told CBS News, “this story has had more impact on me than practically anything I’ve ever done. It’s changed the way I see everyone.”

Oprah spoke with Dr. Bruce Perry, a renowned American psychiatrist, leading expert on childhood trauma, and pioneering advocate for quality early childhood education.

Bill 205 Advocate for Persons with Disabilities

Provide feedback on the priorities that will inform the mandate of the new Advocate for Persons with Disabilities. Alberta Government is asking Albertans with disabilities, families, service providers and support organizations to provide feedback on the planned role and responsibilities of the advocate as outlined in Bill 205.
Share your feedback by completing the online survey before March 31, 2018


Bill 205: the Advocate for Persons with Disabilities Act was passed in the Alberta legislature in May 2017 and is expected to be proclaimed into law in the spring of 2018.

The Act will allow the government to better support persons with disabilities and their families by:

  • naming an Advocate for Persons with Disabilities
  • assigning staff to support the work of an Advocate
  • empowering the Advocate to represent the rights, interests and viewpoints of persons with disabilities

The advocate will report to the Minister of Community and Social Services and will be required to submit an annual report.

Creating an advocate was a recommendation from members of the disabilities community during the PDD Safety Standard Consultation in 2016. Advocacy was identified as critical within the PDD community to ensure people with disabilities are supported to lead fulfilling lives.

Once established, Alberta will be one of the first jurisdictions in the country to have an advocate specifically dedicated to persons with disabilities.

ALIGN Self-Care and Safety for Front-Line Workers Resource Bulletin March 8, 2018

This resource bulletin includes tools, resources and training to support front-line workers safety and mental health. If you are a supervisor – these resources can assist you in supporting your staff and if you are front-line worker you can access valuable resources that can help you stay safe. Please share with others who may benefit from this resource collection.

The Edmonton Volunteer Fair April 14, 2018

The Edmonton Volunteer Fair April 14, 2018 is an opportunity to not only raise awareness of your organization but to recruit new volunteers as well.

What We Heard Report

Last week, Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development announced the release of the What We Heard report which summarizes the diverse viewpoints of Canadians and ideas on what it will take to reduce poverty in Canada.

2017 International Signs of Safety Gathering Presentation Materials

2017 International Signs of Safety Gathering Videos and Presentation Materials Available for a Limited Amount of Time.

Please note that all presentations will be freely available to watch on for three months from the date that they are published. Following that, five presentations will be selected to remain available for two years. All the presentations from this and past International Gatherings are always available through an organizational subscription to the Signs of Safety Knowledge Bank.

See More from ALIGN about Signs of Safety

CCVO Executive Directions Offers Two Programs for Nonprofit Leaders (Calgary)

Summit is open to executive directors, presidents, and CEOs, and other executive-level nonprofit leaders who report to a board of directors. Summit is an 18-month cohort experience where leaders learn and grow together in an environment where relationships are built on trust, honesty, and authenticity. Full-day cohort sessions and one-on-one coaching provide ongoing opportunities for participants to delve into their most pressing leadership challenges and opportunities, embrace new ideas and perspectives, and adapt to the changing environment with the support and encouragement of others who understand their unique role. Learn more

Apply for the 2018/19 cohort. Level 1 session dates are May 7 & 8, June 12, September 11, October 9, November 13, and December 11, 2018; Level 2 session dates are February 12, March 12, April 9, May 14, June 11, September 10, and October 8, 2019. Application deadline: March 15, 2018

Ascent is open to directors, program managers, and other similar levels of nonprofit leaders. Ascent is a six-month cohort experience for participants who want to be a courageous influencer and collaborative leader. Full-day monthly sessions and peer gatherings in between sessions provide opportunities to delve into the issues and challenges of being a senior-level leader. Participants will develop a deeper understanding of themselves as a leader, their role within the organization, and their connection to the broader community. Learn more

Our interactive sessions focus on individual growth, peer learning, coaching, and opportunities for application of learnings. One of the greatest strengths of the cohort experience is the power of the confidential peer advisory format; the group digs deep into challenging and important issues, learns from each other, challenges each other, and is accountable to each other.

Next Intake: Fall 2018; please contact Leslie Tamagi at to be notified when the next intake opens.

Letter from ALIGN E.D. Regarding Bill 17 Update March 5, 2018

Letter from ALIGN E.D. Regarding Bill 17 Update March 5, 2018

Bill 17 – update

Hi all,

We met again with the Ministry of Labor folks and are on a slightly altered path.  For all the residential programs, they have agreed that everyone fits under the Caregivers regulation.  As many of you had pointed out this is what people were using prior to the legislation changes.  I have asked that the Ministry write that clearly within the employment standards fact sheets or in some other clear way.

For the outreach/crisis driven work the primary rationale for the changes would be to allow the sector to respond appropriately to emergency/crisis situations that fall outside of the predictable work day.  The following proposal is to amend the Employment Standards Regulation to:

  • define a category of employment in relation to the provision of “individual and family support services” as funded by the Ministries of Children Services and Community and Social Services in relation to fulfilling requirements of program –specific legislation (legislation to be identified e.g. Family Support for Children’s with Disabilities Act);
  • Establish a daily overtime threshold of 12 hours in a day;
  • Propose of 176 hours in a 4 week period before overtime entitlements are calculated;  and
  •  Provide an exemption from requirements of the Code around “notice of work times” including notification of schedule changes (section 17 of the Code)  to enable scheduling of work within parameters approved by the employer (this supports the ability for employers and employees to structure work schedules suited to the clients/families they are providing care to

Note that:

  • The employer will need to keep records of when staff do work
  • No special rules are proposed for general holidays.
  • No special rules are proposed for averaging agreements since the changes above will have the effect of allowing employers and employees to manage their hours of work within the month (in effect allowing averaging).

The proposal of a 176 hour threshold for determining overtime entitlements over a four week period better aligns with the 44 hour per week threshold in place for most employers in other industries

There are some expectations of who has to support this direction and we need to get those in writing.  Once that has been completed then there is a formal approval cycle that this request has to go through.

Again if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

Rhonda Barraclough ALIGN Association E.D.  

See Previous Correspondence Related to Bill 17

Letter From ALIGN E.D. To Members Re: Bill 17 Feb. 26, 2018

Feb. 26, 2018 Letter From ALIGN E.D. To Members Re: Bill 17

Executive Directors:

Bruce and I have been working away with the Ministry of Labor to address some of the urgent needs of the sector as a result of Bill 17.  Essentially there needs to be a variance or regulation change in order for the 24/7 operations and the crisis/ flexible family intervention driven services to be able to manage within legal work agreements.

We have come to a place now where we need to have a letter of support from the Association.  The Board of Directors have been briefed and are in support of a letter written on behalf of ALIGN to go forward to continue this work.  It essentially will support the following:

  • The variance or regulation will create a category of employees defined as those funded by the Ministries of Children’s Services or Community and Social Services to deliver individual and family support services in relation to the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act, Family Support for Children with Disabilities Act, and the Persons for Developmental Disabilities Act. ( this includes residential/group care; specialized services; family intervention and therapeutic crisis type workers);
  • Establish a daily overtime threshold of 12 hours per day and 184 hours in a four week (no weekly threshold) for this group and exempt those from the requirements of Section 17 of the ES Code (Notice of Work Times) The exemption from Section 17 will allow employees to schedule their own hours within the work month with employer approval. A work month means a calendar month or a period of time from a specific day in a month to the same day in the following month as established by the consistent practice of the employer. (This is inclusive of those job categories above.  It provides for flexible scheduling and for 24/7 day week operation.  Please note this replaces any other regulation you may have been working with prior like the caregivers regulation.  It is different but essentially makes similar hours of work possible)

Once support for these 2 areas is received from the Associations and the unions.  Then the Ministry of Labor will move forward to the Minister to ask for a variance or regulation for our sector.   Once that is agreed to there will need to be some work on employee engagement and agreement.  How that is to be done is still not determined.

If you have any questions or concerns about this please let us know as soon as possible.  The letter going forward will be written and sent by the end of this week.


Rhonda Barraclough Executive Director   780.233.5459 9 cell

See More Communications from ALIGN regarding Bill 17

CUP EVAL LAB: Putting Strategic Learning into Practice

Eval Lab is an exceptional learning opportunity for non-profits around evaluative thinking and strategic learning.

Eval Lab participants will explore strategic learning (and related concepts) within a flexible co-learning environment and test them in their day-to-day work.

This pilot run of the Eval Lab is limited to participants from non-profits who undertake human services work. This cohort of lab participants will meet regularly for six full day sessions over a period of seven months, leaving opportunities between to apply lab learning to their organizations.

Meetings will be held in the first week of the month from April to October, excluding September.

Application deadline is Friday, March 9th.  The fee for Eval Lab is $450.

ALIGN E.D. re: Bill 17 February 12, 2018 Correspondence with Premier

February 12, 2018 Correspondence Letter From ALIGN E.D. re: Bill 17

Dear members,

By now you are aware that we have been advocating in support of the impacts of Bill 17. I want to give just a quick update.
We have been working in 2 areas:

1. Financially- we have been advocating that there needs to be increases in contracts for, at the very least, the holiday/vacation pay increases that agencies have to incur as a result of the new legislation. We have shown both Ministries (CS & CSS) a sampling of the costs from those of you that sent them in. We have also shown the costs of overtime as they stood in December. Many of you have probably rearranged your staffing models and worked with your staff to manage the costs associated in this area. We have made it very clear that in those areas where overtime is not avoidable the costs are extremely high.

2. Variance or regulation changes to Bill 17 – In order to make changes we have to show that there is a business driver for change and then be able to make a case for that change along with some solutions about how to make it. The government made it clear that any variance/regulation would need to be sought out by the Association on behalf of the agencies or by agencies themselves. They preferred that we do it collectively. As a result ALIGN and ACDS are working together to achieve one or the other.

We have made a business case that we need a variance/regulation change that covers the crisis nature of the work and the 24/7 operations (group homes, crisis nursery, family support workers, specialized 1:1 workers as examples). We have made a suggestion that a regulation or variance similar to the section 9 caregiver regulation that health currently has would be helpful. In principle there is agreement. We are awaiting a draft.

We are also seeking a definition of scheduled work – as we have explained why having a schedule is not how many service delivery sites providing service to families/ individuals when and where they need it. You can then develop your work site agreements based on this.

The other area we still need direction on is the live-in 24-hour shifts. We are asking about them and if they can be accommodated in this regulation/variance.

Currently the Caregivers Regulation for overtime is hours over 12 in a day and 264 in a month. We are currently looking at overtime pay on hours over 12 in a day and between 184 and 200 (still to be determined) in a one month period, labor will not allow us to go to 264. Most group homes currently work on a 12 week schedule. Knowing the maximum hours your residential/group care staff work in a month would be helpful. Concurrently we need to know know
which agencies have a Union and in their collective agreement what are the hours where overtime is paid.

What comes next is figuring out how we get general consensus from the staff. We need to have majority support. Which means that you as executive directors will need to talk to your staff once we have something for you to view and think about, then quickly talk with them, and somehow ( yet to be determined) we need to have assurance that staff are in agreement.

As we work with the Ministry of Labor and Ministries of Children Services and Community & Support Services, we have also written to the Minister of Finance and the Premier outlining the concerns with the legislation and the need for funding to cover these costs

Also view  ALIGN Letter to Premier Re Bill 17 February 6, 2018
This is ongoing work. I will update you as we make progress and when we need you to take some action.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email me or call 780 233 5459.

Rhonda Barraclough

See More Re: ALIGN and Bill 17

New Call Centre to Help Indigenous Children Announced February 9, 2018

Federal government sets up call centre to help Indigenous children get services By The Canadian Press. Published on Feb 9, 2018
Indigenous Services Canada has set up a new call centre to help First Nations children get services and supports under the child-first jurisdictional policy known as Jordan’s Principle. The centre will provide families with direct access to agents who will start the intake process and connect them to the Jordan’s Principle representative in their area. The regional representatives work closely with local service co-ordinators across Canada to identify and address the needs of First Nations children and improve their health and well-being…

The Three Pillars of Transforming Care Dr. Howard Bath

ALIGN Association:  Presentation Materials from the workshop The Three Pillars of Transforming Care by Dr. Howard Bath February 1, 2018  Red Deer
The Three Core Trauma-Related Needs Dr. Howard Bath Alberta, January/February

If uploading or sharing this document please site full information above

The Three Pillars of Transforming Care distils the core propositions of trauma theory into a clear, concise and accessible framework for those providing care, mentoring and education for young people. It does not primarily target therapists or clinicians but residential workers, foster carers, kinship carers, teachers, and young justice workers as well as those that support, train and mentor them

Dr. Howard Bath has been involved in the provision of child, youth and family services for over 40 years. Trained as a clinical psychologist, he has worked as a youth worker, manager, and as the CEO of a child and family services agency. From 2008 to 2015 Howard was the inaugural Children’s Commissioner of Australia’s Northern Territory. In 2010 he co-chaired a major government inquiry into Child Protection Services in the Northern Territory. Howard is widely published in the areas of family preservation, out of home care, child protection and developmental trauma


Government to implement Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruling on Indigenous youth

On February 1, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal released a new ruling for the Government take immediate action to address the number of Indigenous children in care and reform child welfare services. The government has committed to six points of action to address the over-representation of Indigenous children and youth in care in Canada.


Government of Alberta Child Intervention Fact Sheets – February 1, 2018

Government of Alberta Child Intervention Fact Sheets Now Available – February 1, 2018

Child Intervention, also known as “child welfare” or “child protective services”, can be confusing for those involved. These fact sheets will help parents and families understand how the system works, how to access services, and their rights and responsibilities.

Family Finding Recommended Resources January 2018

Recommended Resources following ALIGN Family Finding Presentation Edmonton Jan 2018

Center on the Developing Child Harvard University
Toxic Stress Effects on the body
Applying Brain Science to Child Welfare
The Science of Resilience
Tipping the Scales: The Resilience Game

Turney K and Wildeman C. Mental and Physical Health of Children in Foster Care. Pediatrics. 2016;138(5): e20161118
Mental and Physical Health of Children in Foster Care Kristin Turney, Christopher Wildeman November 2016, VOLUME 138 / ISSUE 5

On Being
How Trauma and Resilience Cross Generations Rachel Yehuda

Campbell Collaboration
The health and well-being of children placed in kinship care is better than that of children in foster care 2016

American Academy of Pediatrics
Unique Needs of Children in Kinship Care


Behavioral Epigenetics
Moshe Szyf gives a keynote presentation on behavioral epigenetics during the opening conference of the research group “Genetic and Social Causes of Life Chances

The Body Keeps the Score
Dr. Bessel van der Kolk, one of the world’s leading experts on developmental trauma, explains how our long-term health and happiness can be compromised by prior exposure to violence, emotional abuse, and other forms of traumatic stress.

Gathering Wisdom for a Shared Journey VIII Keynote Presentation – Terry Cross
Terry Cross – Founder of the National Indian Child Welfare Association now serving as senior advisor. He is the author of Positive Indian Parenting and co-authored Towards a Culturally Competent System of Care, published by Georgetown University. He has 40 years of experience in child welfare, including 10 years direct practice.

Social and Behavioral Determinants of Toxic Stress
David Williams of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health looks at the social and behavioral factors–including socioeconomic status, race, discrimination, and place–that play a role in triggering toxic stress for children and adults. He also discusses what effective solutions for reducing toxic stress and improving health

Gabor Mate: Attachment, Disease, and Addiction
Jack Shonkoff Harvard University Leveraging the biology of Adversity to Strengthen the Foundations of Healthy Development
Bruce McEwen Rockefeller University The Brain an Body on Stress
Impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences on Health Across the Life Course—Core Story: The ACE Study

See More Family Finding

Indigenous Children in Care January 2018 Updates

Provinces hold off signing agreement on Indigenous child welfare 6-point federal plans includes a push to devolve child welfare to Indigenous communities Provincial ministers assembled in Ottawa for an emergency meeting on First Nations child welfare held off on signing a final agreement to transform a “broken” system Friday, saying they need more time to consider the fundamental reforms the federal government is proposing.

The Millennium Scoop: Indigenous youth say care system repeats horrors of the past CBC January 25, 2018
Is the care system broken, or working exactly as designed — to wipe out Indigeneity? Indigenous children accounted for more than half of foster children under 14 in Canada in 2016. That’s despite the fact that First Nations, Métis and Inuit youth make up just eight per cent of that age group nationally…

The Millennium Scoop: Indigenous youth say care system repeats horrors of the past CBC January 25, 2018
Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde is urging First Nations across Canada to create their own child-welfare legislation – something the federal government says it supports – to prevent more Indigenous children from entering foster care.

Child Intervention Review Updates January 2018

Alberta child intervention panel drafts 26 recommendations for government approval
Action plan on recommendations due in June Stephanie Dubois · CBC News · Posted: January 24th 2018,

OCYA Summary Report: Five Years of Investigations January 15, 2018

‘Terrible consequences:’ Jane Philpott on Indigenous children in foster care Macleans January 16, 2018 

Fighting foster care The stunning number of First Nations kids in care is a new touchstone for activists—and for rebel parents By Kyle Edwards Macleans


2018 Alberta Justice Public Fatality Inquiries
The Alberta government’s System to Track Responses to Fatality Inquiry Recommendations, launched in June 2017, documents the responses to fatality inquiry recommendations on a go-forward basis.
Reports 2018

New Alberta Government Employment Standards Resources January 2018

Alberta’s new Employment Standards Code came into effect Jan. 1, 2018. Products and services are available to help employers and employees learn the new rules:

ALIGN Updates on Bill 17

ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough – Communication With Rae-ann Lajeun January 16, 2018

ALIGN Impacts of Bill 17 Jan 2018 – revised-1 known and anticipated impacts for Child and Family Service agencies

.    As we discussed before most folks are in agreement that the Bill makes sense and is good for Albertans generally,  but there has been some unintended consequences for our sector.  There are some questions in this document that hopefully Labor can answer.  I have to say I keep hearing that people call one time and get and answer then call again for clarity and get a different answer so it has been extremely frustrating.  If they can provide answers to some of these questions it would be helpful.

To answer your earlier questions

  1. We have not heard issues with minimum wage – I have only heard from woods homes as its an issue for their driving program.  We will have compression issues down the road but hopefully by then contracts will have added compensation.  This is also not the case for disability services, they do have minimum wage concerns.
  2. The averaging agreements really don’t help with the overtime debt.  Because the agreements require a schedule and in Family Support there is no schedules or they cannot be open/broad enough and in a 24/7operation it will remain a need.  Therefore there  needs to be compensation in the contracts  some how, it is our hope that Children Services is figuring this into the budget and renewals of contracts:
  3. Compensation for holiday pay needs to be added to the contracts as there is no way to avoid those costs and the agencies don’t have it in their current contracts and that I will send examples separately.

Thanks for helping to make this a workable solution.  We look forward to our meeting on Thursday.

See More ALIGN Communications related to Bill 17

‘Terrible consequences:’ Jane Philpott on Indigenous children in foster care

‘Terrible consequences:’ Jane Philpott on Indigenous children in foster care
In late January, Indigenous Services Minister Jane Philpott will hold an emergency meeting of Indigenous leaders, child-welfare agencies and advocacy groups to confront what she has called a “humanitarian crisis.” Indigenous children are grossly overrepresented in foster care across Canada, with advocates saying the system has become, in effect, the next generation of residential schools. In 2016, First Nations, Métis and Inuit youth made up 52 per cent of foster children younger than 14 in the country, despite representing just eight per cent of that age group in the wider population, according to Statistics Canada...

Alberta Family Wellness Update Posted January 2018

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 Research Update December 2017
Alberta Family Wellness Monthly Newsletter December 2017

Call for Speakers & Panelists: Fail Safe 2018

Call for Speakers & Panelists: Fail Safe 2018 Conference Edmonton March 22 – 23, 2018

At the inaugural Fail Safe conference, we’re connecting leaders from non-profits, businesses, and the public sector for open and honest discussions about embracing and overcoming failure.Comprised of a Thursday evening reception and a full Friday of keynotes and breakouts, delegates will leave Fail Safe informed about how failure can manifest in organizations and confident in utilizing failure for good. At Fail Safe, participants will become comfortable with the uncomfortable, learn how to embrace and overcome failure, and feel inspired to build strategic and resilient organizations
What can your experiences tell the non-profit community about overcoming failure?

Several opportunities are available to lead conversations on topics related to these themes, including keynotes, panel discussions, and short PechaKucha-style presentations at the Thursday evening reception.

Opioid Survey Results from Stats. Can and Report on Shift in Care for Newborns

Statistics Canada Results of the Survey on Opioid Awareness, November 2017 Released: 2018-01-09
Data from the 2017 Survey on Opioid Awareness are now available. The survey collection was conducted in November and December 2017 and results are being released today, five weeks after the completion of data collection. The information collected by the survey will provide a better understanding of Canadians’ knowledge of the opioid issue and risks, and their willingness to act…

CBC News – Report calls for shift in care for newborns exposed to opioids in the womb Jan 11,2018
During an opioid epidemic that has rocked Alberta and other regions of the country, doctors are urging a shift in care for the youngest victims of the crisis — newborns. Health authorities across the country have reported a rise in the number of babies born after being exposed to opioids in the womb…

See ALIGN Resource Directory for more Opioid Resources, Research & Initiatives

Improving Pregnancy-Related Health through the ENRICH First Nations Project Edmonton January 25, 2018

On behalf of the Faculty of Extension’s Indigenous Programs team, we invite you to join us for our upcoming lunch & learn with Dr. Richard Oster and Grant Bruno of the ENRICH First Nations Project. (Poster attached.)
Please share with anyone who may be interested! 
Thursday, 25 January, 2018, 12 pm
Room 2-520 A, 2nd floor of Enterprise Square (10230 Jasper Ave)
*Please note talks will all be in the classroom area moving forward as we no longer have event A/V support at UofA for the atrium.
Bring your lunch and join the Faculty of Extension’s Indigenous Programs team for the first lunch & learn of 2018 with Dr. Richard Oster and Grant Bruno of the ENRICH First Nations Project. In this presentation, Richard and Grant will share their experience of a collaborative, community-based project aimed at improving prenatal outcomes for Cree women. Included are potential strategies for success.
ENRICH is a group of fifteen investigators, plus students and staff that came together under a research program funded for five years by Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions (AIHS). ENRICH studies are aimed at improving maternal health in pregnancy and postpartum by finding innovative ways to promote healthy weights and healthy eating. Learn more about the ENRICH project here.
Find out more: Facebook event page
All are welcome. Event is free to attend. 

The Premier’s Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities (Council) Wants to Hear From You!

Dear Stakeholder,

The Premier’s Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities (Council) wants to hear from you! Deadline Feb 9, 2018

The Council was recently appointed through an Order in Council by the Government of Alberta.  Council members were selected by an open and transparent application process facilitated by the Alberta Public Agencies Secretariat.  Council is responsible for advising the Premier and the Government of Alberta and reports to the Minister of Community and Social Services.  Council’s advice is focused on opportunities for full and equal participation of persons with disabilities in the life of the province. The advice is grounded in the member’s own lived experiences with disability and by listening to persons with disabilities, their families, provincial organizations, service providers and aligns to the United Nations Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Council is establishing a strategic plan to guide and focus the work for a three year mandate. This Council is reaching out to stakeholders for input into our plan.  It is important that Council listen to the community to be able to reflect relevant issues and concerns of the disability community. We have attached an Information card about the Council that includes two key questions.  Council wants to hear from you on issues and challenges faced by the disability community and priorities to focus on for the next 3 years.

Council also needs your help getting this invitation out to individuals and families in your networks – Please share this email broadly with your networks.

Input is due Friday, February 9th, 2018

Responses to the questions can be emailed to: or if you require assistance or alternate format please contact the office of the Secretariat by phone at: 780-422-1095.

Questions They Are Asking Premier’s Council on the Status of Persons with Disabilities


Alberta Government Summer Temporary Employment Program (STEP) is back! Get the Details at an Upcoming Webinar

STEP grants provide eligible employers with a $7-per-hour wage subsidy to hire students into summer jobs. You can grow your business while providing a student with valuable work experience and transferable skills.

You will learn about:

  • Employer eligibility criteria
  • Student eligibility
  • Position requirements
  • Application and reimbursement processes

A live Q&A session will follow the presentation.

Who should attend:

  • Small businesses (1-49 employees)
  • Non-profit organizations, public libraries
  • Municipalities, First Nations, Métis Settlements
  • School Boards
  • Publicly-funded post-secondary institutions

Plan to attend one of 4 webinars offered from Jan. 9 to Feb. 1, 2018.

Find webinar dates and registration here. Space is limited – register now!

Compliance Bulletin – Employment Standards Code Changes in Alberta In Easy to Understand Language

Welcome to 2018 and Alberta’s revised Employment Standards!

As you’re aware, the Fair and Family-friendly Workplaces Act (Bill 17) came into effect on January 1, 2018.  I thought you might appreciate a document that highlights the changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards in easy to understand language.   Feel free to share this with anyone that you think may benefit from the information

Kathy Anders CAIB, CRM | Account Executive Foster Park Brokers January 2018

Bill 17 Update and Request for Member Input from ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough January 5, 2018

Bill 17 Update and Request for Member Input from ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough  January 5, 2018

Happy New Year.  As you can see by the note below Bruce and I will be meeting with the Ministry of Children Services and Ministry of ‘Labor on January 18th. I have been asked to capture any and all details that are at issue to forward them in advance to the Ministry of Labor.  As you can see by Rae- Ann’s note I have already made some suggestions early.  Can you please respond to me by the end of next week,
January 12 if you have any points to make about the following.  Please note this is relating to Children Services not FSCD.  If you are an FSCD agency please send your information along as well and I will send it on to that ministry as I have been talking to them as well. Especially the minimum wage issues.
Thank you everyone for your patience.  We are trying to work diligently with the different Ministries to resolve some of the issues and possibly get some funding into the system to address the OT issues.  I need as clear information as possible and within this next week.  P{lease send your comments to my email at

As mentioned before the break, we have arranged for a meeting on January 18th from 11:00-12:00, 12th floor boardroom at Sterling Place; a couple of the staff from Alberta Labour who were involved in the drafting of Bill 17 will be at the meeting and our hope is that they will be able to answer any of the outstanding questions.  This meeting will also be an opportunity to highlight other potential solutions that may address some of the concerns raised by your agencies.

Before then, though, we are also trying to quantify the dollar impacts of recent government policy changes, and have 2 requests along those lines that I am hoping you might be able to provide us some clarifying info on, before the end of next week if possible (recognizing you are on holidays!):

1)      I am wondering if you are able to confirm the total OT impacts with new averaging provisions for your agencies.   I know you provided us with an analysis several weeks ago, but this was before the new provisions were known and I wasn’t sure if the document you provided me was the total for all of your agencies, or a sampling of them. Although you indicated that the new provisions don’t address some of the concerns you have, it wasn’t clear if they indeed give your agencies any relief from the OT impacts.

I am mindful that the full impact will not be known until there is a more in-depth conversation with Alberta Labour regarding the family support and outreach workers but we would appreciate any analysis you can do on this in the meantime.

2)      We would also appreciate confirmation that the minimum wage expectations set out in Bill 17 will not create additional pressure for your agencies. I know you said this was not a significant concern, but if there are anticipated impacts that you feel you want to clarify, this will be helpful for us.

Finally, in order for the staff from Alberta Labour to be prepared for this meeting, I will provide them with a recap of the impacts/suggestions previously identified by ALIGN – recap below.

  1. Currently for Health there is a coordinated homecare regulation that allows flexibility for staff who work in home and have to be available for their clients.  If this type of regulation could include Children Services so family support/ outreach workers could be considered like homecare workers then that would  alleviate the flexible schedule and what will become a decrease of services for families because under the Bill 17 rules, agencies will not be able to meet all family needs if they go over the allocated hours allowed to be worked.

One agency is doing the following: I’ve given my  CSD staff a daily window to work within and flex their time accordingly. For example they can work anywhere between 8 am and 8 pm (the schedule) but not exceed the labor standards of 12 hours a day, 6 days a week and 144 hours over a 4 week period.  This still limits the family when they may truly need the staff but it’s what the agency can do.  The risk is the family doesn’t get what they need.  The actual hours are set between the staff and the families/individual, they are not on a fixed schedule as we can’t dictate when the families are available. We work with many families/individuals who cannot meet during regular business hours.

  1.  Under  Bill 17 there is a section 74 that allows for schedules and agreements.  Possibly ALIGN as an association could get a variance for group care/ 24 hour operations.  What is not clear is what if you are not a member of ALIGN, how does that actually work?
  2. The costs of the statutory holidays are also quite significant.  All wage employees, regardless if they work or normally would have worked on the Stat are eligible for a cash payment after each Stat holiday; the cash payment is 5% of their earnings in the four weeks prior to the Stat.   Many agencies have casual or part time employees who did not receive this before and this is significant for some agencies.

If there are additional items that should brought to the attention of Alberta Labour prior to the meeting, please drop me a line and we will forward the information

See All Correspondence Regarding ALIGN and Bill 17

Summer Temporary Employment Program (STEP) Deadline February 9, 2018.

STEP is a 4 – 16 week wage subsidy program that provides funding to eligible Alberta employers to hire high school or post-secondary students into summer jobs from May to August. Summer positions created through STEP provide students with the opportunity to build meaningful work experience, increase their skills and workplace insight and help prepare them for the future.

A standardized wage subsidy of $7.00/hour to a maximum of 37.5 hours/week will be provided to approved applicants.

As of January 4, 2018 STEP is now accepting applications for 2018. The application deadline is February 9, 2018.

Bill 17 Update from ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough December 20, 2017

Bill 17 Update from ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough December 20, 2017

Dear ALIGN Members

Please review the information (see below) I received this morning (Dec 20, 2017) regarding Bill 17.

Please send me your comments regarding any implication you see so that I can provide that information directly to the Ministry.

Rhonda Barraclough, ALIGN Association E.D.


As discussed, the Bill 17 draft regulations have been modified to include flexible work week provisions; hours of work can now be extended up to a maximum of two weeks.  Below is an example for your reference:

Example: Flexible Averaging Agreement – 10 hour daily overtime threshold, 2 week averaging period

In this example, the daily overtime threshold specified in the agreement is 10 hours per work day.

Scheduling Requirements:

ü  No more than 12 hours per day is scheduled and no more than an average of 44 hours per week is scheduled.

ü  All work days and the number of hours to be worked on each of those work days are identified in the schedule.

Overtime Requirements:|

ü  If the employee is asked or chooses to work longer daily hours, daily overtime could be payable where hours of work exceed 10 per work day.

ü  If the employee is asked or chooses to work more hours in the averaging period, averaging period overtime could be payable at the end of the averaging period for hours in excess of an average of 44 hours.

Sun. Mon. Tues. Wed. Thurs. Fri. Sat. Weekly Hours Average/week over cycle
Week 1 0 10 10 10 10 8 0 48  
Week 2 0 6 6 8 8 8 0 36 44


I hope this info is useful for you to share with the agencies in order for them to recalculate the OT impacts with new averaging provisions.  We would appreciate receiving this information as soon as realistically possible as we hope that the new flexibility will address some of the earlier concerns.

I also wanted to confirm that the minimum wage expectations set out in Bill 17 will not create additional pressure for your agencies. Earlier conversations indicated that this was not a pinch point but wanted to double check.

Thank you for your patience Rhonda and I look forward to receiving an update on the OT implications as well as confirmation of the minimum wage impacts.   I hope you get to enjoy some quality time over the holidays with your family and friends.

See Previous Bill 17 ALIGN Correspondence

Changes to Child Intervention E.D. Positions

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT:  To ALIGN On Behalf Of Rae-Ann Lajeunesse Alberta Government sent to ALIGN December 15, 2017

You may be aware that, as of December 11, Russ Pickford changed roles from Executive Director – Child Intervention North to become the Executive Director for Regional and Community Program Delivery, within our ministry’s Family and Community Resiliency (FCR) Division.  Fortunately, we’ll still be working with him in his new role within the FCR Division.

This change has created an opportunity to review and realign the leadership structure for Child Intervention regional delivery.  We will be moving  forward on some changes to our leadership structure.  Effective Monday, December 18,  Jon Reeves will be the Executive Director of Child Intervention Services, overseeing child intervention service delivery across the province.  Jon believes Alberta is on the leading edge of service delivery and is focused on continuing to improve child intervention practice in Alberta.  I know Jon is looking forward to continuing to work with you to improve the lives of children and families in Alberta.

With these changes, Jon will be filling the Regional Director positions in Edmonton and Calgary on an interim basis.  These positions should be filled by Friday, December 22.


Updated National Guidelines for Family-Centred Maternity and Newborn Care

The first two chapters of the updated National Guidelines for Family-Centred Maternity and Newborn Care have been released December 2017.  The Family-Centred Maternity and Newborn Care: National Guidelines is a resource on maternal and newborn health. It includes the latest information and advice from Canadian experts.  The guidelines are for those interested in maternal and newborn health, such as:health care providers, other Canadians involved with maternal and newborn health and those who plan, manage and decide on maternal and newborn health programs and services

Child Welfare Information Gateway New Child/Youth Trauma Resources

Supporting Brain Development in Traumatized Children and Youth
Series Title:  Bulletins for Professionals Author(s):  Child Welfare Information Gateway Year Published:  2017

Alternatives for Families: A Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (AF-CBT)  (Issue Briefs)

Addressing the Needs of Young Children in Child Welfare: Part C—Early Intervention Services (Bulletins for Professionals)

Understanding the Effects of Maltreatment on Brain Development  (Issue Briefs)

Standford Social Innovation Review Winter 2018

Standford Social Innovation Review Winter 2018
Building a Canadian Social Finance Fund Government and its partners can achieve transformative change by taking a big leap By Stephen Huddart & Tim Draimin Winter 2018
Excerpt: A social finance fund in Canada would stimulate innovation in the public service and bring new dynamism to the social sector, renewing the relationship between government, philanthropy, and the private sector at a time when meeting the UN Sustainable Development Goals demands an all-out effort. Transformative change will require not only collaboration within government and across sectors, but also new sources of capital, new approaches to managing risk, and new uses of data..

Sharing Data and Protecting Privacy: A Case Study from Alberta

Excerpt: The Philanthropist Kiran Pohar Manhas, Jason Lau and Xinjie CuiNovember 27, 2017 Sharing Data and Protecting Privacy: A Case Study from Alberta
The internet has changed how we consider information: vast amounts of it are available, information accessibility is amazingly rapid, and digitalized information is immediately ready for machine use (Lenczner, 2012). Companies are directed to view in-house data as critical to achieving “a sustainable competitive advantage” (Niemi, 2013, p.1). The internet and emerging technologies facilitate and promote data re-use and re-purposing in multiple ways that often diverge from the original purposes at collection.

Thus, many actors are increasingly considering the availability and opportunity of data, including those working in the public, research, private, and non-profit sectors. Where information about people is concerned, privacy obligations arise legally and ethically. We conducted research into the privacy obligations and practices that accompany data re-use and re-purposing for non-profit organizations in Alberta….

ACDS Call for Presenters

Request for Presenters: a Call for Participation (FSCD)

ACDS 2018 Annual Spring Conference Navigating the Journey…to who we are! Edmonton May 7-9, 2018
The Community Disability Services sector began its voyage a couple of generations ago and together we’ve made great progress.  Armed with a vision and a mission, we set sail on unchartered waters and have navigated shifting tides, been buoyed by many periods of smooth sailing, and have occasionally been adrift in the fog.  The purpose of Spring Conference 2018 is to inspire our teams on the next leg of the journey



Alberta Child Review Panel News & Updates December 2017

Final stage of work underway for Alberta child welfare panel  Edmonton Journal December 6, 2017

Bereaved Alberta mother fights for resurrection of Serenity’s Law December 5, 2017

Serenity’s mother at Alberta legislature as UCP reintroduces child welfare bill​​​​​​​ Global News December 5, 2017

Serenity’s Law will likely never become legislation, MLAs concede CBC News December 5, 2017


See More News and Updates Related to Review Panel

ALIGN Bulletin Human Service Agencies and Christmas Considerations December 2017

With the holidays come many considerations for human service agencies. Find out more about the legalities of office parties, staff mental wellness, the ethics around accepting gifts and more!

ALIGN & Sector News November 2017

So much going on! ALIGN E.D. Rhonda Barraclough updates members regarding Bill 17 and check out upcoming ALIGN training and conference registrations  and new  sector reports and initiatives.

Calgary Foundation’s Vital Signs 2017

For the past decade, Calgary’s Vital Signs Report has featured expert research combined with results of a citizen survey. This year, over 2,500 Calgarians took the Vital Signs survey to grade their quality of life..

Crisis Services Canada Launches Canada Suicide Prevention Service

Call Message or Text
Today Crisis Services Canada (CSC), a national network of local and regional crisis and distress centres, launched the new Canada Suicide Prevention Service (CSPS)…

Government of Canada Minister Lebouthillier announces Disability Advisory Committee

Minister of National Revenue, Diane Lebouthillier, announced that the Disability Advisory Committee, originally formed in 2004 and disbanded in 2006, is being re-instated to advise the Canadian Revenue Agency on the needs and expectations of persons living with disabilities, and to help formalize the means of collaborating with various stakeholders…

The Vanier Institute of the Family’s 2016–2017 Annual Report

The Vanier Institute of the Family’s 2016–2017 Annual Report is now available to download, featuring an overview of highlights from their publications, projects, partnerships and other activities over the past year. As Canada celebrates its 150th anniversary, many families across Canada – whether newly arrived or firmly rooted for generations – are reflecting on the past, contemplating and discussing the present, and envisioning our future together. While much has changed since Confederation, one thing that has remained constant is the unique and vital role that family has played as the cornerstone of society and the engine of the economy…

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

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 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

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

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


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

Editorial: Building a stronger city


Nearly one-fifth of Edmontonians feel socially isolated: Report


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…


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

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 Leaders Series

Update April 2018

The Indigenous Thought Leaders Presentation Videos

Indigenous Protocol Process Video’s

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.

Also See
Indigenous Advisory Group
Allying With Indigenous Peoples Cultural Solutions: The Practice of Omanitew


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
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.

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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.



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

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 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.


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 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

Call for Proposals Alberta College of Social Workers 2018 Annual Conference March 22nd – 24th, 2018

ACSW call for proposal 2018
Alberta College of Social Workers 2018 Annual Conference
March 22nd – 24th, 2018
Double Tree by Hilton Hotel – Edmonton
“Social Justice & Resilience: Moving Forward Together”

ASCW Call Application Form

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

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


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



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