Child and Family Practice Review Summaries

The decision to conduct a Child and Family Practice Review (formerly Case Review) is made no later than thirty working days following notification to the Provincial Director of Child Welfare of a Fatality or Critical Injury to a child in care or child who was served by the Ministry in the previous 12 months. The decision is based on an examination of the critical injury or death using standard criteria. The decision-making process includes consideration of factors such as the nature of the incident, the nature and duration of the Ministry’s involvement, issues or concerns regarding past involvement, and public accountability.

Child and Family Practice Reviews begin with the development of terms of reference (TOR) and an examination of relevant documentation. If the TOR is not answered through this examination, staff and other stakeholder interviews are conducted to ensure the TOR is satisfied. However, interviews cannot be conducted until after criminal investigations and any ensuing court proceedings are completed.

All Child and Family Practice Review reports include a summary of the family’s involvement with the Ministry or other service providers, and an analysis of the information is documented in a written report. The findings are reviewed with the Executive Director in the Service Delivery Area or Indigenous Child and Family Service (ICFS) Agency (also known as a Delegated Aboriginal Agency) responsible for serving the child, and an Action Plan is developed collaboratively to address practice issues identified in the review. Each action includes the name of the individual responsible for completing it, as well as the deadline when it must be completed. The Provincial Director of Child Welfare tracks and monitors the completion of every action in every plan by following up with those responsible for the actions until they are completed. From time-to-time issues may arise with practice of a social worker; these concerns are brought forward to the Executive Director.

Twice yearly, summaries of each Child and Family Practice Reviews are posted to the internet. The public disclosure of information balances the Ministry’s need for a high level of public accountability with its obligations to protect the personal information of the children and families served by the Ministry. The summaries do not provide any information such as the child’s age, gender, community, or cause of death or injury to ensure the privacy of the child and the family.