Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ottawa CAS Changes By-Laws - MCYS asked to investigate

The Ottawa Children's Aid Society recently modified its membership requirements so that there is no longer a need for people who apply for memberships to pay an annual fee.

There are a multitude of reasons the Society may have modified its membership fee requirement which may have resulted from recent advocacy efforts by the Foster Care Council of Canada to increase the transparency and accountability of child welfare services by educating the public about Society memberships. At this time, one can only speculate as to why the changes were made to eliminate the need to pay for membership fees.

Upon learning of the Society eliminating its requirement to pay a fee for memberships John Dunn, the executive director of the Foster Care Council of Canada contacted Barbara MacKinnon, the Society's executive director in December of 2009 to ask the following questions:

1. When were these 2009-2010 application forms created

2. At what meeting were the Societies By-Laws amended

3. Have the newly modified Society By-Laws been filed with the Ministry as
required by subsection 13 (1) of the Child and Family Services Act which
reads as follows:

"Approved agency
13.(1) An approved agency shall file a certified copy of its by-laws and of any amendment to them with the Minister forthwith after they are made."

Dunn has reminded MacKinnon twice now and still awaits her response.

He has also contacted the Judith Dunne of the Eastern Regional Office of the Ministry of Children and Youth Services to ask if she could look into the matter as they are responsible for enforcing the Child and Family Services Act in the Ottawa area and a response is still pending.

Updates will be provided as soon as they are received.

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