Tuesday, 10 December 2019

Media release: The Nova Scotia College of Social Workers (NSCSW) is urging the N.S. government to invest in supports to strengthen family life for vulnerable children and youth in their submission to Budget Talks 2018. “The Nova Scotia Government has a responsibility to our children and youth and must ensure the atrocities of Canada’s colonial and racist past are not repeated. They need to invest wisely to keep vulnerable children and youth in their homes and communities.”

Unreliable drug and alcohol testing performed by an Ontario lab has caused the unwarranted break up of families, not only in Ontario, but very possibly in Nova Scotia as well. Community Services used the Motherisk lab for a hair strand test that has now been discredited in hundreds of cases. After a review, Ontario revisited every case where Motherisk evidence was used. Not here in Nova Scotia, though.

News release: Concerned social workers in Nova Scotia have launched a social media campaign to engage Nova Scotians and bring awareness to the significant stressors that the province’s child protective system is facing. “The current system is being stretched so thin and children are falling through the cracks. Child protection social workers continue to see high caseloads that are increasingly complex. This challenges the quality of case management and increases the risk to vulnerable children and families.”

Former child protection social worker Trish McCourt about high caseloads, lack of training in what can be a dangerous job, burnout, stress and other perils of the job. “Yes, child protection is challenging work. Yes, it can be dangerous, and yes, it often feels thankless. But the real hardships come from the lack of empathy, support and value that is communicated by the employer – the department of Community Services, province of Nova Scotia.”

Recent changes to the Child and Family Service Act have made the fight against child poverty even more difficult, writes Alec Stratford, executive director of the NS College of Social Workers. Shortened judicial timelines, the expansion of the definition of neglect and the overall lack of resources have amounted to greater penalization of families struggling to afford the cost of housing, food, childcare, clothing and transportation.

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