This is page numbers 5333 - 5364 of the Hansard for the 18th Assembly, 3rd Session. The original version can be accessed on the Legislative Assembly's website or by contacting the Legislative Assembly Library. The word of the day was services. View the webstream of the day's session.

Topics

Committee Motion 100-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Working Relationships with Community Stakeholders, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

Glen Abernethy Great Slave

Thank you, Mr. Chair. The department has reviewed the recommendation and does accept it. The recommendation is reflected in the Quality Improvement Plan under sections 3.5 and 4.8. I also talked, during my conversation around recommendation number 3, about some of the work that we are doing with the Foster Family Coalition as far as tracking and working with them. The department and authorities also participate in a monthly partnership meeting hosted by the Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories. As a note, the executive director of the Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories is the co-chair on the Foster Care Quality Working Group that has been recently established. The quality working group is focusing on how to improve relationships with all foster homes, including those with extended families.

As part of the reporting in the Quality Improvement Plan and directly relating to this recommendation, the department will track the meetings held with the Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories and report on those, and we are working, obviously, to strengthen our relationship with the Foster Family Coalition moving forward. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Committee Motion 100-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Working Relationships with Community Stakeholders, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Thank you, Minister Abernethy. To the motion.

Committee Motion 100-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Working Relationships with Community Stakeholders, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

Some Hon. Members

Question.

Committee Motion 100-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Working Relationships with Community Stakeholders, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Question has been called. All in favour? Against? Abstentions?

---Carried

Mr. Testart.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

March 11th, 2019

Page 5344

Kieron Testart Kam Lake

Thank you, Mr. Chair. I move that this Assembly recommends that the Department of Health and Social Services develop and implement training for foster parents. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Thank you, Mr. Testart. To the motion. Mr. Testart.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

Kieron Testart Kam Lake

Thank you, Mr. Chair. Again, the committee, in our deliberations around how we felt the issues that were raised by the report that really needed to be addressed, felt that the role of foster parents in the system and the government's working relationship with them really needed to be improved. Committee noted that the resources for providing training to foster parents was really insufficient, with many foster parents not having any formal training at all.

Committee is very concerned by this and wants to ensure that anyone who is caring for children in the system has the adequate resources and understanding of their obligations under the legislation to be compliant and ensure that children are cared for, because that is really the top priority at the end of the day. We feel very strongly as a committee that training supported by the GNWT is required to ensure that foster parents have the support that they need to be effective caregivers and guardians of children in care. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5344

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Thank you, Mr. Testart. To the motion. Ms. Green.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

Julie Green Yellowknife Centre

Thank you, Mr. Chair. This recommendation doesn't go far enough. The training should be mandatory. I understand that foster parents are often parents of children themselves, but being a foster parent is a different role. It requires different support and different skills, recognizing that children may be in their home temporarily, that they may come from circumstances of trauma and neglect, and that they may need special attention. It would have been my preference that this motion say that the training was mandatory. I think that it is really important to say that this relationship with the foster parents goes both ways. It is not just the government demanding things from the foster parents and providing them with training and so on, but also that foster parents are able to ask for help when they need it. For that reason, I would have preferred to see that this was mandatory. Thank you.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Thank you, Ms. Green. To the motion. Minister Abernethy.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

Glen Abernethy Great Slave

Thank you, Mr. Chair. The department has actually already committed to this action in the Quality Improvement Plan. Please take a look at action item 4.6. The Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories is currently engaging us in this action item. I do take the Member from Yellowknife Centre's point, and I will certainly raise those issues with the deputy and the team working on this to see what additional steps may be necessary to make the training mandatory. If we can do that, we will certainly look at that. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Thank you, Minister Abernethy. To the motion.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

Some Hon. Members

Question.

Committee Motion 101-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Training for Foster Parents, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

The Chair Daniel McNeely

Question has been called. All in favour? Against? Abstentions?

---Carried

Mr. Testart.

Committee Motion 102-18(3): Standing Committee on Government Operations Report on the Review of the 2018 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Northwest Territories (Child and Family Services) - Information-sharing Agreement with Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories, Carried
Consideration In Committee Of The Whole Of Bills And Other Matters

Page 5345

Kieron Testart Kam Lake

Mr. Chair, I move that this Assembly recommends that the Department of Health and Social Services establish an information-sharing agreement with the Foster Family Coalition of the Northwest Territories to ensure that all foster parents may be connected with that organization's resources. Thank you, Mr. Chair.