Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Foster Kids Turning 16

Can apply for a status review under

Section 64(4) of the CFSA

(4) An application for review of a child’s status may be made on notice to the society by,

(a) the child, where the child is at least twelve years of age;

(b) any parent of the child, subject to subsection (5);

(c) the person with whom the child was placed under an order for society supervision; or

(d) where the child is an Indian or a native person, a representative chosen by the child’s band or native community.

Leave required in certain cases

(5) Where the child is a Crown ward and has lived with the same foster parent continuously during the two years immediately before the application, an application under subsection (4) shall not be made by any parent of the child without the court’s leave.

Notice

(6) A society making an application under subsection (2) or receiving notice of an application under subsection (4) shall give notice of the application to,

(a) the child, subject to subsections 39 (4) and (5) (notice to child);

(b) the child’s parent, unless the child is a Crown ward and is sixteen years of age or older;

(c) the person with whom the child was placed under an order for society supervision;

(d) a foster parent who has cared for the child continuously during the six months immediately before the application;

(e) where the child is an Indian or a native person, a representative chosen by the child’s band or native community; and

(f) a Director, if the child is a Crown ward.

Six-month period

(7) No application shall be made under subsection (4) within six months of,

(a) the making of the original order under subsection 57 (1);

(b) the disposition of a previous application by any person under subsection (4); or

(c) the final disposition or abandonment of an appeal from an order referred to in clause (a) or (b),

whichever is the latest. R.S.O. 1990, c. C.11, s. 64 (1-7).

Exception

(8) Subsection (7) does not apply where,

(a) the child is a society ward or the subject of an order for society supervision, or the child is a Crown ward and an order for access has been made under section 58; and

(b) the court is satisfied that a major element of the plan for the child’s care that the court applied in its decision is not being carried out. R.S.O. 1990, c. C.11, s. 64 (8); 1999, c. 2, s. 18.

No review where child placed for adoption

(9) No person or society shall make an application under this section where the child,

(a) is a Crown ward;

(b) has been placed in a person’s home by the society or by a Director for the purpose of adoption under Part VII; and

(c) still resides in that person’s home.








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Also check out Section 47(3) of the CFSA
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Where sixteenth birthday intervenes

(3) Despite anything else in this Part, where the child was under the age of sixteen years when the proceeding was commenced or when the child was apprehended, the court may hear and determine the matter and make an order under this Part as if the child were still under the age of sixteen years. R.S.O. 1990, c. C.11, s. 47.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Ombudsman Over CAS's

When Bill 210 (the law which changed how child welfare is delivered in Ontario) was moving through the Legislative Assembly (Queens Park in Toronto) it went through all three stages before it became law. During those stages, the NDP's Andrea Horwath attempted to get the Ombudsman to have jurisdiction over CAS's decisions which are not made by the court. Unfortunately the Government of the Day, during committee hearings shot the attempt down (including the Ministry of Children and Youth Services). They did not want the Ombudsman to have power to review CAS decisions or omissions.

Now, in what appears to be a protest and a means of making the government accountable to the public for it's decision, Andrea Horwath (NDP MPP) has introduced to the Legislative Assembly, Bill 88, 2006. It is called

"Bill 88, 2006, Ombudsman Amendment Act (Children's Aid Societies), 2006."

By Introducing this to the Legislative Assembly, she is forcing the Government to publicly admit that they do not want any form of external accountability over CAS's.

The reason it will force the Government to have to publicly admit it is because of how a Bill becomes Law. The Bill gets "introduced" to the Legislative Assembly and is "read for the first time" of three times.

The first reading gives all of the members of the Provincial Parliament an opportunity to be made aware of the Bill and to hear its content and read to obtain a copy of it to read and become familiar with it over the next few days.

After a short period of time (48 hours I believe) the Bill is put on the Government's schedule to be read a Second time in the Legislative Assembly. After everyone has had time to read the Bill and prepare a response to it they get to discuss it publicly in the Legislative Assembly. (Aired on the ONTLA Channel) and will have their words permanently saved in the document or transcript called "Hansard".

After second reading, it can be referred to a committee who will invite the public to give their own input and feedback to the Bill. Basically an opportunity to share your experiences, and to offer your support or recomendations for amendments to the Bill.

This is your chance to have the Government hear your stories of how CAS did something or omitted doing something it should have done. Explain how the CAS abused its power and how it affected your family and your child(ren)'s lives.

If you were in foster care have your life heard and how the CAS's decisions affected you. Maybe even discuss your attempts to get your records without success and the like.

We have been given a second chance to bring the attention of CAS abuse and omissions to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario and to the general public. Don't miss it. If you have ever filed a complaint with a CAS or with the Ministry which was not resolved or were intimidated from complaining through the use of your child as a barganing chip or pawn, or if your child is not getting mail from you, or anything at all, this is your chance to be heard.

The Bill written out below for you to read. Below that, Andrea Horwath's contact information is listed so you can call her and ask how you can help.

I of course will keep everyone informed.


Bill 88 2006

An Act to amend the Ombudsman Act with respect to children's aid societies

Note: This Act amends the Ombudsman Act. For the legislative history of the Act, see Public Statutes - Detailed Legislative History on www.e-Laws.gov.on.ca.

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows:

1. The Ombudsman Act is amended by adding the following section:

Ombudsman may investigate children's aid societies

14.1 (1) Anything that the Ombudsman may do under this Act in respect of a governmental organization, the Ombudsman may do in respect of a society as defined in subsection 3 (1) of the Child and Family Services Act.

Same

(2) If the Ombudsman does or proposes to do anything in respect of a society as defined in subsection 3 (1) of the Child and Family Services Act, any reference in this Act to a governmental organization is deemed to be a reference to the society.

Commencement

2. This Act comes into force on the day it receives Royal Assent.

Short title

3. The short title of this Act is the Ombudsman Amendment Act (Children's Aid Societies), 2006.

______________

EXPLANATORY NOTE

The Bill amends the Ombudsman Act to allow the Ombudsman to investigate any decision or recommendation made or any act done or omitted in the course of the administration of a children's aid society.

Ok, so that was it. Now here is how you contact Andrea Horwath and her office to share your encouragement, support and to ask how you can help her with Bill 88 2006.

http://olaap.ontla.on.ca/mpp/daMbr.do?locale=en&whr=Id=2170

Andrea Horwath
Hamilton East
New Democratic Party of Ontario

Member, Standing Committee on Estimates
Critic, Pensions
Chair, Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills
Deputy Third Party House Leader
Member, Standing Committee on General Government
Critic, Economic Development and Trade
Critic, Children's Issues

Contact Information

Queen's Park


Rm 159, Main Legislative Building
Toronto ON M7A 1A5

Tel : 416-325-2777
Fax : 416-325-2770
email : ahorwath-qp@ndp.on.ca

Constituency


720 Main St. E
Hamilton ON L8M 1K9

Tel : 905-544-9644
Fax : 905-544-5152
email : ahorwath-co@ndp.on.ca

Member's Parliamentary History
Parliament 38
October 02, 2003

Riding :
* Hamilton East

Parliamentary Roles :
* Vice-Chair, Standing Committee on Government Agencies
June 23, 2004 — December 13, 2005
* Member, Standing Committee on Estimates
June 17, 2004
* Member, Standing Committee on Government Agencies
June 17, 2004 — June 23, 2004
* Critic, Pensions
May 31, 2004
* Chair, Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills
December 14, 2005
* Deputy Third Party House Leader
May 31, 2004
* Member, Standing Committee on General Government
December 13, 2005
* Member, Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills
December 13, 2005 — December 14, 2005
* Critic, Economic Development and Trade
May 31, 2004
* Critic, Children's Issues
October 15, 2004


Party Affiliation(s) :
* New Democratic Party of Ontario
May 14, 2004

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Residential School Survivor Story

Listen to this short documentary of a native woman who brings her mother to a Residential School to confront her past and to try and improve her relationship with her mother.

http://www.cbc.ca/outfront/listen/2005/05-12-05.html

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Foster Care Log

Legal Aid Submission to the Social Policy Committee on Bill 210.

Incredible stats and information.
http://www.legalaid.on.ca/en/news/Dec22-2005a.asp