SK Child Welfare Consultations Begin

News Release – April 1, 2010

The independent panel that is conducting a comprehensive review of child welfare in Saskatchewan is beginning three months of stakeholder consultations.

From April 1 to June 30, 2010, First Nations and Métis organizations and other child welfare stakeholders across Saskatchewan will engage with the review panel in one of three ways:

• Consultation meetings — select delegations will be invited to meet privately with the panel to share their views on child welfare, as well as provide a written submission.• Written submissions — select individuals and organizations will be invited to provide a written brief to the panel.

• Online consultation — anyone with an interest in child welfare in Saskatchewan may complete an online questionnaire for submission to the panel. The questionnaire can be accessed on the website of the Saskatchewan Child Welfare Review from April 1 to June 30, 2010. The website is located at www.saskchildwelfarereview.ca.

“This review is laying the groundwork for significant, lasting change and better outcomes for vulnerable children and families across Saskatchewan,” Social Services Minister Donna Harpauer said. “The independent panel has our government’s full support, and I strongly encourage every stakeholder and individual with an interest in child welfare in Saskatchewan to get involved in this important process, either through the online questionnaire or by accepting the panel’s invitation to meet or provide a written submission.”

“Our panel has selected a representative group of child welfare stakeholders with diverse perspectives and experiences, and we look forward to meeting with them in communities across Saskatchewan over the next three months,” Chair Bob Pringle said. “In addition, anyone who wishes to participate in this review may do so through the online questionnaire. Our panel has also established six broad themes to help guide our consultations with stakeholders. These themes – Prevention, Protection, Quality of Care, Family Reunification, Permanency and Youth Transitions – will be used to explore a new vision for child welfare in Saskatchewan.”

The independent panel was appointed on January 26, 2010, by Harpauer and consists of Chair Bob Pringle of Saskatoon, Howard Cameron of the Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation, April Durocher of Saskatoon (originally from Île-à-la-Crosse) and Carol Skelton of Harris. The review panel is going well beyond an examination of the relevant provincial legislation to consider all aspects of child welfare in Saskatchewan, including fostering, adoption, child protection, and the prevention of child abuse and neglect. The panel will provide recommendations in fall 2010 for the government’s consideration.

The website address of the independent panel is www.saskchildwelfarereview.ca and their e-mail address is questions@saskchildwelfarereview.ca. The panel’s toll-free telephone number is 1-877-370-6511.

Chair Bob Pringle is the media spokesperson for the independent panel and can be contacted by members of the media at 1-877-370-6511.

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For more information, contact:

Brian Miller
Social Services
Regina
Phone: 306-787-0531
Email: brian.miller3@gov.sk.ca

Bob Pringle
Child Welfare Review
Saskatoon
Phone: 1-877-370-6511
Email: questions@saskchildwelfarereview.ca

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