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Child Welfare Sector Response to Auditor General Report 2015

The Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies (OACAS) and it members welcome the 2015 report of the Office of the Auditor General of Ontario (OAGO). The safety and protection of children and youth is the first priority of Ontario Children’s Aid Societies (CASs). As noted by the Auditor General, child protection services are mandatory. Children and youth cannot be placed on wait lists. Ontario CASs are committed to the provision of quality services and excellence through a culture of organizational learning and continuous improvement. This is done through internal case audits, program evaluation and client/stakeholder engagement with the findings identifying best practices and supporting improvement initiatives.

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Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rejoice!

Help keep this holiday season merry and bright by making environmentally friendly choices to help fight climate change and keep Ontario's air, land, and water clean.

·     Choose energy-efficient holiday lights and put them on timers to save on electricity bills.

·     Reduce waste by sending holiday greeting cards electronically, or pick cards printed on recycled paper.

·     Choose a real, Ontario-grown Christmas tree from a local tree farm or retailer.

·     Make your holiday travel as green and safe as possible. Carpool or take public transit to holiday parties. If you have to fly over the holidays, consider purchasing carbon offsets.

·     Make your festive dinners environmentally friendly while supporting local businesses. Choose from Ontario's wide range of local foods available in December.

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Don’t ‘blow up’ Ontario’s child welfare system

Children’s aid societies welcome feedback on their work with those Ontario families who struggle with overwhelming challenges related to poverty, violence, addiction and mental health issues. The Ontario child welfare model which relies on community involvement does indeed reflect Ontario’s history of local accountability; it has many demonstrable advantages.

 

Adding to a series of critical articles in the Star, Martin Regg Cohn, the Queen’s Park reporter with no apparent background in child welfare, has called for the current system to be scrapped and replaced with a more centralized model. However, given the recent issues reported in both the B.C. and Manitoba child welfare systems (which use a more centralized system), we question how Mr. Cohn arrived at his prescription.

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