Each of the five ministers put charge of the department since it was carved out of the Department of Health and Community Services in 2009 has responded to the myriad of crises with the same stock answers "We were going through a process of transition as a department", and "the department was created to deal with these issues".
Carol Chafe, the Newfoundland and Labrador Child and Youth Advocate stated last week that "The systems currently in place in this province to protect children and youth continue to have significant gaps which place children at risk" and " "If significant changes are not made, we run the risk of witnessing another generation of our children who will grow up with mental health issues and addictions, and who will be subject to the continuing cycle of abuse."
These are very serious indictments of the the departments responsible.
Children continue to die and suffer from abuse while receiving government services. The situation is unconscionable. The doctrine of ministerial accountability demands that the political head of the department take responsibility, yet Paul Davis, Joan Burke, Charlene Johnson and now Clyde Jackman pass it off as "growing pains"
There is a long list of neglect, much of which has been commented on in the media and on this blog over the past 12 years. One does not have to go any further than the Child Youth Advocates Report entitled 16. This document is an indictment of the agencies that look after our children.
Here is an incomplete list of posts that I have done on the issue:
It has been nearly ten years since the Turner Review and Investigation reported. It is time for another judicial inquiry into the disturbing failure of Child, Youth and Family Services in failing in it's mandate to protect the most vulnerable in our society.