Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Ottawa CAS Attempts to Avoid Charges Again

The Ottawa Children's Aid Society -- through it's counsel -- has again attempted to ask the Crown to step in and stay (kill) the charges against the Society and its executive director Barbara MacKinnon by attempting to confuse the issues.

The name of one lawyer has been removed at his request out of fear of public contacting him which has happened in the past. Please do not contact the firm, if you have comments make them on this blog at the end of the post.

I sent the Crown and Society counsel the following letter to which their response is included below.

Burke-Robertson Barristers & Solicitors
Counsel for the Children's Aid Society of Ottawa and Barbara MacKinnon

[Counsel Name Removed],

Judith Dunne, Program Manager of the Eastern Regional Office of the Ministry of Children and Youth Services informed me (John Dunn) of the fact that the Ministry will not investigate the Children's Aid Society of Ottawa and its executive director, Barbara MacKinnon for violating violating section 15 (3)(g) of the Child and Family Services Act, and section 22 of the Annual Service Agreement between the Society and the Ministry for receiving Ministry allocated transfer payments which all require the Society to comply with any and all applicable statutes, including the Corporations Act they are charged under, unless I get a conviction.

Since it is in the public interest that the Society and its staff comply with the agreements and legislation they are subject to, and that they be held accountable to the public for violating such statutes and agreements, and at the request of the Society to enter into resolution discussions, I am offering the following as a resolution:

1. I will continue to pursue the charges and allow a Justice of the Peace to determine if the Society and its executive director should be convicted of the offences charged.

2. After a conviction has been entered, I will then make a joint submission to the Justice of the Peace on sentencing, as agreed to by the accused, that we agree to reduce or eliminate the applicable fines in exchange for the Society furnishing the list as required by law.



Sincerely
John Dunn
Executive Director
The Foster Care Council of Canada
613-220-1039
http://www.afterfostercare.ca


Foster Care News Blog
http://www.fostercarenews.blogspot.com

Also read about the Ride for Accountability in 2010
http://www.racas.wetpaint.com


The Society responded as follows:

If you need to, you can click on each image to get a larger version. Then hit Back or the <-- arrow on your browser to come back here to read the next image.




















































John Dunn then responded to the Crown with the following message:

In order to assist you in making a decision as to whether or not to stay the charge as laid, I will provide the following information for both parties involved.

1 The charges themselves were properly laid because of the fact that an offence was committed.

2. I may have stated that I don't "want" the list and that the list is merely a tool to send the letter to the members, but the law makes the request completely legitimate.

3. Even if I had a membership with the Society, I could and would still be required to use either section 306 or section 307 to request a list of the members to communicate with them so my membership status is irrelevant. I have never said that I am requesting the list in retaliation for the Society refusing to give me a membership. Again, it is completely irrelevant.

4. When the charge was laid, I was not even aware that the Ministry would not take action until a conviction is entered. At the time of the laying of the information on November 16, 2009 the only reason for the charge being laid was because the Society had contravened the law.

I recently asked the Ministry of Children and Youth Services to investigate the issue of the Society spending ministry allocated transfer payment funds on an illegal purpose and they responded that they can only perform their duty to investigate once a conviction has been laid, encouraging me to continue the action before they can proceed in the public interest.

It is my wish that this matter properly proceed and be decided once and for all by a Justice of the Peace based on the evidence before him or her as permitted by law. I have only proceeded with facts and evidence and have never abused the process at any time.

It appears from the evidence available in this case that there is a very strong possibility of conviction and that is why this matter should proceed.


Sincerely
John Dunn
Executive Director
The Foster Care Council of Canada
613-220-1039
http://www.afterfostercare.ca

Foster Care News Blog
http://www.fostercarenews.blogspot.com

Also read about the Ride for Accountability in 2010
http://www.racas.wetpaint.com


The Crown has responded to Society's Counsel stating that she will not intervene and stay the charges as requested by the Society that Dunn is welcome to proceed with the prosecution.

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