Friday, January 6, 2012


'Broken Dreams', Murray Unruh, glass & acrylic


In spite of inquiries and recommendations, changing governments, legislative reforms and in-house restructuring that the MCFD calls transformation, this child welfare system in B.C. has failed generations of both children and parents. British Columbia’s child welfare system has been in crisis for decades and it still is. Hon. Mary McNeil can only address the predicament if she consults and understands the history of this Ministry in B.C., acknowledges the existing problems, and agrees that changes are required and can be affected.

The foundation of B.C.’s child protection system is articulated in The Child Family and Community Services Act . It was approved in 1996 and it contains the values for child welfare as the Legislature expects it to be practiced. In 1996 this Act held enormous promise that the service provided would support families to care for their children within the family home. Physical apprehension of a child would be used only as a last resort and in the event that temporary placement was deemed necessary. Even in such a case the stated goal was always to reunify children with natural parents as quickly as possible. The CFCSA tacitly stated that removing a child from the parental home is a severe intervention. I join the crowd of serious reviewers who have concluded that the current child protection practices are violating the law established within the principles of the CFCSA. I'm not writing simply to rag on a Ministry or upon people but rather to represent the rationale for necessary changes and improvements to B.C.’s Child Protection programming and delivery.

When evaluating this Ministry, assessors are obliged to hear service providers, social workers, and lawyers representing parents in child protection cases. Wisdom dictates that another group needs to be heard and that is the parents whose children have been or are involved in the protection system. They have too often been ignored or silenced yet they have experiences, opinions and insights that can inform conscientious appraisers in ways that will make a difference. MCFD cannot in good faith say that it acts in the best interest of children until its management pays unbiased attention to parents.

The 'Child, Family and Community Services Act' Link

It concerns me that I have said nothing here that has not been said before by authorized probes and legal society reports. Ms. McNeil must restore MCFD practice of the fundamental principles of the ACT.

Art: 'Broken Dreams' by Murray Unruh, acrylic and glass, 36X49 inches

1 comment:

  1. "Crisis mode" is MCFD's business model. This has carefully evolved and refined since the 70's.

    You must have not personally had your own children removed, and/or have not reviewed the extensive documentation that exists for a family who has been selected for such intervention.

    If you looked at some of MCFD's analytics, you know this agency is not operated by overworked uninformed dummy's. They might give that appearance, but that is by design.

    The due diligence and preparation that occurs prior to a removal is mind boggling. You look at ANY file record of a family to confirm that in no way shape or form does a typical removal spontaneously happen because of a life-threatening event. Their so-called documentation on a single call involves 10-times the effort of an equivalent police call. This is because they have the time, and get so few of these calls Province-wide.

    If such crisis does occur, it gets released to the media, so we can hear all about how instantly MCFD responds to such 'crisis' events.

    If you want to look at where the phrase "go postal" originated and what happened to that mentality, look no further than child protection staff.

    If a social worker has a bad day, they can take it out on a helpless family so someone can be more miserable than them.

    MCFD needs to properly employ risk management: Risk / Issue / Problem. How they actually employ risk management brings them many dollars in Provincial budget funds.

    RISK is knowledge of something that could happen, say a family that might need help or trouble will results. Another example is an egg spinning on a table, the known risk is it may fall off and break.

    The ISSUE is, there is an observation of an increase liklihood that a known risk will occur. A plan must be put into place to reduce the risk. MCFD does "risk assessments" and constructs them in a way to show the only way to alleviate that risk is to give "services" to families. Another way to reduce risk is to remove children. In the case of an egg, placing pillows around the desk or a barrier to keep the egg from falling over the edge manages the risk.

    The PROBLEM is when the egg drops and breaks. MCFD loves problems. The know the risk, they identify some hapless family and accumulate 'issues' and they wait for the inevitable 'problem' which leads to removal.

    So you see, MCFD deliberately cultivates the decline of families so they can later jump in and portray themselves as saving the day by removing children.

    The RISK to the children of removal is poor school outcomes, diminished self esteem, bonding interruption with siblings and parents, a future problem to society. MCFD will have you believe such problems already existed, NOT that their intervention is the SOURCE of problems.

    You need experts OUTSIDE of MCFD who understand the risk model and how to properly implement it to shadow MCFD workers and make sure they do their job correctly WITHOUT removing children from their home.


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