Recommendation Tracking

With the proclamation of the ACYA, MACY inherited the responsibility from the Manitoba Ombudsman to monitor the implementation of recommendations made by our office. In accordance with Section 11 (1)(d) of the ACYA, MACY will be monitoring the implementation of recommendations included in reports made as provided under Section 27 (Investigation) and Section 31 (Special Reports). In addition, Sections 30(2) and 30(4) of the ACYA require that the Manitoba Advocate must include in the Annual Report a summary of recommendations made in Special Reports, and may include information on the level of compliance to the recommendation.

To find out more about the recommendations that transferred in with the new legislation, check out our 2018/19 Annual Report (PDF) (page 36-37).


The table below is a reflection of information as reported in the MACY Annual Report. It summarizes the recommendations released in Special Reports, identifies the activities conducted towards implementing the recommendation, and MACY’s evaluation of compliance to the recommendation.

Table Headings and Functions:

  • Date Report Released: The date the Special Report was released by the Manitoba Advocate. Selecting the Date Released will show the full text of the recommendation.
  • Title: The title of the Special Report. Selecting the Title will take you to the online version of the report.
  •  Report Type: Identifies if the recommendation came from a Special Report, or other report as released by the Manitoba Advocate.
  •  Recommendation Category: One or more key words to reflect the subject matter of the recommendation.
  •  Public Body: The domain responsible for implementing the recommendation and providing a response to the Manitoba Advocate.
  •  Date Last Response Received*: The date of the public body’s most recent response to the Manitoba Advocate regarding the recommendation.
  •  Date Response Due: The Manitoba Advocate requests that responses are provided every six months following the release of a Special Report.
  • Reported Status by Public Body: The status of the recommendation as reported by the public body responsible for implementing the recommendation. Status is intended to reflect the stage of implementation.
  • Action Taken by Public Body: A link to a description of the activities conducted by the public body, as reported by the public body.
  • MACY Compliance Evaluation: Identifies if the Manitoba Advocate evaluates the work of the public body to be in compliance with the intention of the recommendation.

In November 2020, the Advocate released her first compliance report monitoring recommendations. See the full report here (PDF).


Date Released Title Recommendation Categories Public Bodies
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 7 Intimate Partner Violence Manitoba Education

Recommendation Seven:

The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends That Manitoba Education (now Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning) develop and distribute learning resources for teachers, school clinicians, and other school staff on teaching healthy relationships for each grade-level, and understanding the effect of IPV exposure on children and youth.

DETAILS:

  • In collaboration with other departments, a resource list of 24/7 phone lines available in Manitoba, including Kids Help Phone, the Family Violence Prevention hotlines, and others should be created and posted in all Manitoba K-12 schools.
  • Learning resources to include access to training, tips for integration into health curriculum, and information to support teachable moments within any classroom.
  • Learning resources to be developed through consultation with IPV experts, including experiential children/youth, newcomer organizations, and Indigenous leadership/organizations.
  • Learning resources should not only support the dissemination of the provincial health curriculum, but be able to provide all teachers, clinicians, and other school staff with an understanding of healthy relationships, IPV, and the effects of IPV on children.
  • Learning resources are made available to all Manitoba Educators through a system such as MAPLE (Manitoba Professional Learning Environment).
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 6 Intimate Partner Violence Manitoba Education

Recommendation Six:

The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Minister responsible for the Manitoba Status of Women Secretariat, enhance funding to each of the ten family violence shelters in Manitoba to ensure employment of a child-focused trauma specialist.

DETAILS:

  • This position would support children in shelter and connect them to resources and services.
  • Conduct community outreach to enhance understanding of IPV and health relationships for children and young people, particularly in rural communities.
  • Conduct training in the community and for local professionals about the impact of exposure to IPV on children and youth.
  • Work with the Manitoba Association of Women’s Shelters to develop a province-wide standard to respond to children exposed to IPV in shelters with trauma-informed, culturally safe, and child-centred approaches.
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 5 Intimate Partner Violence Manitoba Health

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Minister of Health, in collaboration with the Ministers of Mental Health and Community Wellness, Families, and Justice, fund specialized resource(s) that provide culturally safe therapeutic supports for children exposed to intimate partner violence (IPV) to address their trauma and support their journey to healing, consistent with Article 39 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

DETAILS:

    • Resource development should follow meaningfulconsultation with First Nations, Metis, and Inuitgovernments and community leadership.
    • Resource(s) may be funded/located in a community-basedorganization.
    • Resource(s) will act as a point of referral for communityagencies, Victim Services, CFS, and domestic violence shelters to provide specialized care to children exposed to IPV.
    • Include a continuum of supports that address various levels of acuity and consider both immediate and long-term supports.
    • Services include funding to Indigenous healing practices, including Elders and Knowledge Keepers, as well as programs that support Indigenous young people through land-based learning and healing.
    • Access should be barrier-free and avoid time limitations for children and youth who were exposed to IPV in their earlier child/youth years.
    • Enhance specialized programming for male-identifying youth and young adults to address violence normalization and intergenerational violence.
    • Promote services with specific outreach responses to newcomer families and the 2SLGBTQ+ community.
    • Funding for services must be sustainable and any contracts/agreements with service providers should be multi-year and renewable to ensure consistency of services for young people.
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 4 Victim Support Services Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Deputy Ministers responsible for the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth Recommendations Action Planning (MACY-RAP) Committee lead the development of a whole-of-government response plan to address the coordination gaps for children exposed to intimate partner violence (IPV), with the goal of ensuring a child-centred, culturally safe, and trauma- informed service response for all children known to be exposed to IPV in Manitoba.

DETAILS: These activities should include:

  • Service response and coordination needs include:centralized assessment of referrals for children exposed to IPV and their families, family navigation services with warm referrals and follow-up supports.
  • This coordinated response should support referrals from community agencies, police, child welfare, and other stakeholders that have contact with children exposed to IPV and their families and develop a response appropriate to the level of need.
  • Consider the development of child/youth-centred and specialized Family Guide/Navigator position(s) to ensure IPV survivors and their children are connected to available services at the earliest opportunity.
  • Consult with Indigenous-led organizations, Indigenous governments, newcomer serving agencies, and other community stakeholders in the development of this response.
  • Ensure low-barrier access by allowing self-referrals and through a broad eligibility criteria that is not based on whether criminal charges are laid.
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 3 Intimate Partner Violence Manitoba Health

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Minister of Justice conduct an independent outcome evaluation of the Winnipeg Police Service and Manitoba Justice’s Domestic Violence Support Service (DVSS) Pilot program that provides an integrated response to incidents of intimate partner violence (IPV).

DETAILS:

  • Elicit feedback from relevant stakeholders including Indigenous-led community agencies, mental health services, child welfare, and the families and young people impacted by the program.
  • Include a formative evaluation that considers expansion of the program or other culturally-safe integrated responses to jurisdictions outside of Winnipeg, following consultations with Indigenous governments.
  • Make the results of the evaluation publicly available.
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 2 Intimate Partner Violence Manitoba Health

Recommendation Two:

The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Minister of Justice develop a consolidated policing standards framework for investigating intimate partner violence (IPV) that includes best practices for responding to children exposed to IPV in Manitoba, consistent with recommendations 3 and 4 of the Independent Review of the Manitoba Police Services Act, 2009 Final Report.

DETAILS:

  • Recognize children as right-holders under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.
  • Include clear language that designates children exposed to IPV as victims.
  • Clearly define children exposed to IPV and when a child is considered ‘present’ in the residence.
  • Document the presence of children in the residence at the time and the immediate effects of IPV on the child.
  • Establish age-appropriate, trauma-informed, and culturally/linguistically appropriate standards for speaking to children who are present during an IPV incident.
  • If there is an immediate protection concern, CFS should be contacted. Establish mandatory referrals to appropriate services and supports by officers when children are identified in IPV incident but are not referred to CFS.
  • Include a requirement to document referrals and reasons for referrals.
  • Include information sharing practices that connect police forces to Victim Services to ensure follow-up for all cases, similar to the existing arrangements between WPS and Victim Services.
  • Consider provisions for officers attending to the scene of IPV incidents be partnered with civilians who have an expertise in IPV and trauma-informed practices in interviewing children (e.g., social workers, Victim Service workers), where appropriate.
  • Align with the Calls to Action 36 and 40 of the TRC and the Calls for Justice 1.1 to 1.13 of the MMIWG Inquiry.
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
June 22, 2022 Every Two Hours: A Special Report on Children and Youth Exposed to Intimate Partner Violence in Manitoba – Recommendation 1 Intimate Partner Violence Manitoba Health

Recommendation One:

The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Ministers of the Gender-Based Violence Committee of Cabinet publicly recognize children exposed to intimate partner violence (IPV) as primary victims and rights-holders under the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child who are entitled to supports.

DETAILS:

  • The public recognition should articulate steps thegovernment will take towards the realization of the right of children exposed to IPV to receive supports to heal from trauma (article 39, UNCRC)
  • Address the gap in Manitoba’s Framework: Addressing Gender-Based Violence regarding services to children and youth exposed to IPV in Manitoba.
Date Last Response Received: 31/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
May 19, 2020 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 7 Mental Health and Addictions Government of Manitoba , Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Seven: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba develop an inpatient or community-based long-term treatment resource that offers stabilization, assessment, treatment, and aftercare for youth who are at the top tier of mental health and addictions care needs, and for whom less intensive options have been ineffective.

DETAILS:

  • Review national and international best-practice and evidence-informed research from experts in the areas of youth mental health and addictions.
  • Using information gathered from experts and in consultation with community stakeholders, including Indigenous leadership, Elders, and children and youth, develop a plan for a provincial application of a long-term treatment model. The model must be culturally informed and safe and staff must be culturally competent.
  • Put into practice the treatment model and evaluate its effectiveness in achieving the intended outcomes.

IMPACT:

  • Youth will have access to a long-term resource in their province that provides wrap-around assessment, treatment, and aftercare for their complex mental health and addictions needs. This resource would reduce the risk of further decline by accessing meaningful interventions that promote positive mental health and wellbeing.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
May 19, 2020 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 6 Mental Health and Addictions Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Six: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care), in collaboration with rural and First Nations communities in Manitoba, and the federal government, where applicable, implement recommendation 2.11 of the Virgo Report, as summarized below: In the RHAs other than the WRHA, create mental health hubs (as identified in the Peachey report), with a view to: (a) developing these as integrated regional mental health and substance use/addictions (SUA) “focal points”, and (b) harmonizing a core set of regional services and supports to the hospital emergency departments and crisis services including: Screening, assessment, and support for SUA. 24/7 access to psychiatric consultation and acute assessment/treatment services. A core set of professionals in addition to psychiatrists with capacity in SUA support – e.g., clinical psychologists and psychiatric emergency nurses, Cross-trained mental health and addiction liaison workers co-located in hospital emergency departments/other hospital programs. Infrastructure and staffing to ensure safety and security of patients and staff. Links to community mental health and addictions services, including centralized intake (Virgo Planning, 2018; full wording may be found at p. 225).

DETAILS:

  • Ensure that each focal point has the ability to service children and youth, unless other specialities housed at a larger centre are required.
  • Develop a provincial plan to initiate scale-up of focal points in each of the five regional health authorities across Manitoba.

IMPACT:

  • Access to psychiatric and other professional supports in a locally available setting will act to ensure that children and youth will be assessed close to their homes and families, avoiding the stressful and costly medivac procedure. In addition, mental health or addiction liaison workers, such as a professional in a mental health navigator role, and a form of centralized intake integrated at a single location, would ensure children and youth in crisis would be connected to supportive community resources prior to be discharged and a professional would be connected to follow-up with the child or youth in the community to ensure their plan was effective.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
May 19, 2020 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 5 Mental Health and Addictions Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care), in collaboration with rural communities in Manitoba, and the federal government, where applicable, implement recommendation 4.8 of the Virgo Report: Building upon the successful experience of the NorWest Youth Hub and lessons learned from the experience of other provinces, develop a provincial plan for scale-up of the youth hub model, or similar models of integrated youth services, taking advantage of support from philanthropy as it may be available (Virgo Planning, 2018, p. 235).

DETAILS:

  • Develop a provincial plan to initiate scale-up of the youth hub model based on a province-wide gap analysis assessment of need to determine which populations would best benefit from this resource. Special consideration must be provided to rural and remote locations throughout the province.
  • Review the considerable literature and experiences in other Provinces to engage individual communities to guide the implementation of their youth hubs.
  • Integrate multiple access points into communities to promote youth engagement in the hubs, including offering services in places where children are, such as in schools, community centres, health care facilities, and more.

IMPACT:

  • When services and supports are available locally and integrated in one location, youth are more likely to engage with supportive professionals and programming that could act to enhance their overall health and wellbeing. These early interventions could prevent mental health and addictions concerns from worsening and resulting in complex crises over time.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
May 19, 2022 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 4 Mental Health and Addictions Government of Manitoba , Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Four: In line with Article 24 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba conduct an annual review of what therapeutic trauma interventions are available to children and youth in Manitoba and create an inventory of resources, whether the resources require formal referrals from service providers or are open for self-referrals, any associated eligibility criteria (age, location, care status, etc.) and promote the annual inventory and its findings in the public.

DETAILS:

  • The annual review should focus on services for children and youth from birth to 17, be compiled in a document organized by health authority region that includes a list of program names and contact information, who the program serves, intended program outcomes, eligibility and referral requirements and criteria, and occupancy rates.
  • The resulting annual inventory should be accessible to all Manitobans, taking preferred languages into consideration.
  • This document should be available in web format and distributed in print to agencies and organizations that serve the public throughout each region.

IMPACT:

  • By ensuring service providers and families have knowledge of what services and supports are available in each health region, including contact information and descriptions for each service and support, there will be fewer barriers for children and youth to access the appropriate interventions to address their experiences of trauma, reducing the effects that trauma can have on health and development as children grow.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
May 19, 2022 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 3 Mental Health and Addictions , Training Government of Manitoba , Manitoba Families

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba provide early childhood trauma education and training about trauma and its effects to service providers across all government departments delivering services to children and youth.

DETAILS:

  • Operating from a child’s rights perspective, develop a curriculum for education and training concerning early childhood trauma and its effects that includes provincially relevant information, such as the history of colonization and its impact on Indigenous Peoples.
  • Develop a sustainable strategy by which to deliver, evaluate, and revise the curriculum as required based on impact evaluations.

IMPACT:

  • Education and training will increase the knowledge of service providers to understand early childhood trauma and its effects on a child’s overall health and development. This knowledge will increase the capacity of service providers to respond to the needs of the children, youth, and families they serve to ensure interventions are implemented effectively and efficiently.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
May 19, 2022 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 2 Mental Health and Addictions Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care) demonstrates its framework and strategic plan for transformation of the youth mental health and addictions systems in Manitoba ensures equitable access to services across all areas of Manitoba, which are tailored to the unique needs of children and youth in our province.

DETAILS:

  • Look to previously published provincial reports, such as the Virgo Report (2018), as well as best-practice nationally and internationally, to guide the implementation of a framework for a functioning continuum of services and supports that serve to meet the mental health and addictions needs of children and youth in Manitoba whose needs fall in each of the five tiers.
  • Implement culturally-informed and safe services and supports, modified or new, incorporating feedback from important stakeholders, including children, youth, and families, service providers, and Indigenous leadership and Elders, which serve to meet the mental health and addictions needs of children and youth in Manitoba who fall in each of the five tiers.

IMPACT:

  • With system enhancement across all five tiers, children and youth in Manitoba will have equitable access to services and supports at to meet their needs and enhance their overall health and wellbeing. Investments across all five tiers are investments supporting the health and wellbeing of all Manitobans for the present and future.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
May 19, 2022 “Stop Giving Me a Number and Start Giving Me a Person”: How 22 Girls Illuminate the Cracks in the Manitoba Youth Mental – Recommendation 1 Mental Health and Addictions Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care) conduct a gap analysis of the youth mental health and addictions system, based on the tiered model proposed in the Virgo Report. The gap analysis ought to speak to the overall transformation framework and strategic plan for child and youth mental health and addictions services. Further, the Manitoba Advocate recommends the gap analysis, framework, and strategic plan is released publicly to Manitobans.

DETAILS:

  • Conduct a jurisdictional scan to complete a full-service inventory of youth mental health and addictions services and supports available at each of the five tiers, ranging from prevention initiatives to those designed to meet the highest needs.
  • Conduct a gap analysis using the inventory of services and a needs-based assessment of children and youth in Manitoba, taking into consideration what current services in the inventory can be modified or adapted (i.e., increase capacity, needs modification to enhance functioning, or based on new evidence or evaluation, etc.) to better meet needs of children and youth.
  • Provide to the public the short-term (1 year) and long-term (3-5 year) vision and strategic plan for program development and investment to guide system enhancement.

IMPACT:

  • A strong assessment and analysis is required for any strategic plan. Manitoban children and youth will be better served if a provincial strategic plan for transforming mental health and addictions services is informed by an accurate assessment of the services available as well as the current needs across the province.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
November 4, 2021 Finding the Way Back: An Aggregate Investigation of 45 Boys Who Died by Homicide or Suicide in Manitoba – Recommendation 4 Gang Prevention Government of Manitoba

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends the Government of Manitoba, in collaboration with the Government of Canada, extensively and inclusively consult with communities throughout Manitoba to update, fund, and implement a comprehensive provincial youth gang prevention strategy.

DETAILS

  • Employ a community-led and informed by a whole-of-government approach, including stakeholder involvement from across the province with a particular focus on Indigenous and newcomer communities doing work related to rural, remote, and urban gang activity.
  • Include a provincial funding commitment for youth gang prevention initiatives on an annual basis determined by a needs-based assessment, with particular attention to Indigenous and newcomer communities.
  • Address gang prevention for youth through adequate supports tailored to the needs of boys from various backgrounds to help them transition to adulthood. This includes accessing basic needs and navigating through various systems such as housing, employment, and education.
  • Respond to the needs of gang-involved boys based on gender identity to ensure services are more welcoming and accessible to boys.
  • Incorporate prevention via recreation and cultural activities, including sports and art. This should include funding and supports for Elders and Knowledge Keepers in recognition of their essential and traditional role in supporting young people.
  • Include trauma-informed, youth-centred therapeutic interventions for boys at all stages.
  • Include gang prevention as a priority within the Government of Manitoba’s review of the current youth justice system in Manitoba and its connections to the child welfare system.
  • Consider the unique risk and protective factors for newcomer youth.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 02/2024
November 4, 2021 Finding the Way Back: An Aggregate Investigation of 45 Boys Who Died by Homicide or Suicide in Manitoba – Recommendation 3 Anti-Racism/Cultural Inclusion in Education Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends the Department of Education, in consultation with school divisions and relevant stakeholders, demonstrate the development or continuation of sustainable initiatives in anti-racist education generally, and anti-Indigenous racism specifically, for all students, administrators, teachers, and support staff in Manitoba schools to enhance understanding of racism in education with a view to eradicate inequities and system barriers.

DETAILS

  •  Incorporate anti-racist education into the provincial curriculum, empowered by section 3(1) (c.1) of The Education Administration Act.
  • Issue a directive for anti-racist professional development for school staff, pursuant to section 2 The Education Administration Act.
  • Initiatives will be deemed sustainable if there is a long-term plan to implement training that targets both students and staff.
  • In recognition of the Department of Education’s leadership and oversight role, school divisions should annually report on the anti-racist educational initiatives and programs being delivered across Manitoba, including information on when each initiative or program began, if there is intent to renew/include the program over multiple years, who the parget populations are, and data reporting how many individuals (students and/or educators) have been reached.
  • Consider a longitudinal evaluation plan of initiatives to examine their effectiveness and social impact.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
November 4, 2021 Finding the Way Back: An Aggregate Investigation of 45 Boys Who Died by Homicide or Suicide in Manitoba – Recommendation 2 Anti-Racism/Cultural Inclusion in Education Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends the Department of Education continue work on an Indigenous Inclusion Strategy, in collaboration with all school divisions, First Nations and Metis youth, governments, and communities, and includes culturally appropriate school engagement initiatives tailored to Indigenous boys with the purpose of closing the achievement gap and increasing high-school completion rates.

DETAILS

  • Include initiatives to enhance high school completion rates for Indigenous boys as well as targets to ‘close the gap’ between Indigenous and non-Indigenous boys in the strategy.
  • Align with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.
  • Include Indigenous recruitment and retainment strategies for school staff, in recognition of the importance of representation.
  • Identify and target schools, communities, and Indigenous boys that require intensive supports.
  • Incorporate Elders and Knowledge Keepers, in acknowledgement of their essential and traditional role in supporting young people.
  • Expand the mandate of the Indigenous Academic Achievement (IAA) Grant to include initiatives to increase school engagement for Indigenous boys beyond its existing numeracy and literacy focus.
  • Report publicly on progress in closing the gap in Indigenous education achievement.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
November 4, 2021 Finding the Way Back: An Aggregate Investigation of 45 Boys Who Died by Homicide or Suicide in Manitoba – Recommendation 1 Parent Treatment/Resources Manitoba Families

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends the Department of Families cooperate with the Departments of Health and Seniors Care and Mental Health, Wellness and Recovery, along with each of the Child and Family Services authorities to implement evidence-based and culturally safe interventions for parents with substance use disorders with the goal of reducing apprehensions by enhancing substance use supports for parents and communities, in alignment with Calls to Action 1 and 5 of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

DETAILS

  • Fund and evaluate responses to parental substance use disorders with the goal of preventing apprehensions and maintaining family, community, and cultural ties for boys in Manitoba.
  • Consider the essential role of Elders and Knowledge Keepers in providing supports for families faced with substance use concerns.
  • Develop information sharing protocols between the Department of Health and Seniors Care, the Department of Mental Health, Wellness and Recovery, and the Department of Families to improve communication and integration of wraparound supports.
  • Prioritize supports to Child and Family Services agencies in Manitoba’s north, where about half of the 45 boys in this special report lived.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 9 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Nine: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Families and Children’s disABILITY Services create and resource a strategy that reflects a full and flexible continuum of respite options from at-home respite to alternative care outside the home.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Create and resource a strategy that reflects a full and flexible continuum of respite options.
  • Develop informational resources on the continuum of respite options and providers for families.
  • Enforce and financially support the requirement for criminal record and child abuse registry.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 8 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Eight: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Children’s disABILITY Services complete a program manual and make this publicly available.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Program manual is completed
  •  Program manual is publicly available.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 7 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Seven: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Children’s disABILITY Services develop a policy and process to collect regular feedback from the children with disabilities and the families it serves to inform service improvements.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Develop a policy and process to collect regular feedback to inform service improvements.
  • Conduct outreach and gain feedback to inform service improvements.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 6 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Six: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Children’s disABILITY Services, in consultation with Indigenous experts in Manitoba, develop and implement a process for self-disclosure of First Nations (status and non-status), Metis, and Inuit ancestry, and track this information in case management records.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Conduct a review of best practices of data gathering so First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Peoples feel safe in disclosing their ancestry identity.
  • Develop and implement a process for self-disclosure of First Nations (status and non-status), Metis, and Inuit ancestry.
  • Track this information in case management records.
  • Analyze data to understand who is being served by Children’s disABILITY Services.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 5 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Families and Children’s disABILITY Services review and address case management workloads to ensure case managers are able to implement internal standards and provide services that align with a family-centered service model.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Review case management workloads.
  • Develop a hiring strategy to address gaps in case manager positions.
  • Ensure hiring practices promote Indigenous recruitment and retention.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 4 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Families, Manitoba Health and Seniors Care, and Shared Health ensure that families whose children are placed on waitlists for assessments and interventions for disabilities receive system navigation supports through the Children’s disABILITY Services Program while they wait.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Provide system navigation supports through CdS to families whose children are placed on waitlists for assessment and interventions.
  • Shared Health and Manitoba Families jointly fund new systems navigator positions.
  • Conduct a developmental evaluation on systems navigator supports within one year of implementation.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 3 Children's disability services Manitoba Health

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health and Seniors Care, Shared Health Manitoba, and Regional Health Authorities work together to create and resource a financially sustainable coordination agreement to reduce wait-times for diagnostic assessment for children suspected of having a disability, with the goal of wait-times less than six months between referral and diagnosis.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Reduce wait times for diagnostic assessment to six months through a coordination agreement.
  • Recruit and hire additional child psychologists and developmental pediatricians.
  • Research and develop incentives in partnership with the University of Manitoba’s Department of Pediatrics to increase the number of trainees in child psychology and developmental pediatrics.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 2 Children's disability services Manitoba Families

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that a protocol be developed between Children’s disABILITY Services and Child and Family Services that clearly outlines mutually agreed upon processes for serving and jointly funding services for high needs children with disabilities and caregivers that receive services from both programs.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Develop a protocol between Children’s disABILITY Services and Child and Family Services for mutually agreed processes and joint funding.
  • Protocol addresses access, funding, and licensing of out-of-home and alternative care arrangements for children with disabilities and families with high support needs.
  • Protocol revises Children’s disABILITY Services policy that restricts the provision of Children’s disABILITY Services for children transitioned into care with Child and Family Services to 90 days following the placement of the child.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 25, 2021 Bridging the Gaps: Achieving Substantive Equality for Children with Disabilities in Manitoba – Recommendation 1 Children's disability services Government of Manitoba

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends the Government of Manitoba develop and enact a legislative mandate for the Children’s disABILITY Services Program, similar to Alberta’s Family Support for Children with Disabilities Act, that empowers and resources Children’s disABILITY Services to provide a broad continuum of supports for children living with disabilities and their families.

DETAILS:  The intents of the recommendation are to:

  • Develop and enact a legislative mandate for Children’s disABILITY Services Program.
  • Legislation empowers and resources Children’s disABILITY Services to provide a broad continuum of supports.
  • Consult stakeholders in developing legislation, including meaningful consultation of First Nations, Metis, and Inuit governments and communities.
  • Repeal s.14(1)(i) and s.14(1)(ii) of The Child and Family Services Act.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 13 Safe Sleep CFS Authorities , Manitoba Families

Recommendation Thirteen: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Families work with child and family services authorities to develop a provincial standard that requires all child and family service providers to assess infants’ sleep environments as part of prescribed face-to-face contact with anyone receiving child welfare services, including all infants who are not in care.

DETAILS:  

  • Child services professionals will assess the safety of infant sleep environments.
  • Families receiving child welfare services and requiring resources and/or information on safe sleep practices will be identified.
  • Families will be resourced with a crib or other safe sleep surface, if none is available.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba will have a safe sleep surface as is necessary to realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health and to live and thrive (UNCRC, Articles 24 and 6).
  • The Government of Manitoba will ensure that caregivers have the financial and physical resources they need to support child health and wellbeing (UNCRC, Article 27).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 12 Safe Sleep , Training Manitoba Families

Recommendation Twelve: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Families, as part of the changes to provincial child welfare standards announced to end the use of birth alerts, include an assessment of the infant sleep environment in every safety plan for expectant mothers, and provide mothers and primary caregivers with the safe sleep surfaces and public education information they need to ensure the safety of their child.

DETAILS:  

  • Child services professionals will assess the safety of infant sleep environments.
  • Families receiving child welfare services and requiring resources and/or information on safe sleep practices will be identified.
  • Families will be resourced with a crib or other safe sleep surface, if none is available.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba will have a safe sleep surface as is necessary to realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health and to live and thrive (UNCRC, Articles 24 and 6).
  • The Government of Manitoba will ensure that caregivers have the financial and physical resources they need to support child health and wellbeing (UNCRC, Article 27).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 11 Safe Sleep Manitoba Health

Recommendation Eleven: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Collaborative Inter-departmental Working Group on Infant Mortality be reinstated and review cases of sleep-related infant deaths quarterly to look at trends and leverage this information to create and implement interventions to prevent future deaths.

DETAILS:  

  • The Collaborative Inter-departmental Working Group on Infant Mortality will meet quarterly in a year.
  • Annual reports on trends of sleep-related infant deaths will be produced, detailing suggestions for improvement of programs and initiatives.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba will have a safe sleep surface as is necessary to realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health and to live and thrive (UNCRC, Articles 24 and 6).
  • The Government of Manitoba will ensure that caregivers have the financial and physical resources they need to support child health and wellbeing (UNCRC, Article 27).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 10 Database , Safe Sleep Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Ten: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice provide the resources necessary for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner to develop an electronic database, in partnership with the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth, to collect and report on the incidence of and risk factors associated with all suspected sleep-related infant deaths in Manitoba.

DETAILS:  

  • Data collected in suspected sleep-related infant deaths will be systematically and consistently collected in a database.

IMPACT:

  • Through the systematic collection and analysis of data, gaps in healthcare will be identified to inform and evaluate interventions that reduce infant mortality, in partial fulfillment of the Truth and Reconciliation Call to Action No. 19.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 9 Data Collection , Safe Sleep Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Nine: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner work with RCMP and police services across the province to develop (if necessary) and implement a form based on the CDC’s SUIDIRF data collection form, to be used by all law enforcement officers in the province who attend the scene of an infant death.

DETAILS:  

  • A form that is appropriate and user friendly to police and RCMP for use during infant death investigations.
  • Officers will be trained in the use of this form.

IMPACT:

  • Through the systematic collection and analysis of data, gaps in healthcare will be identified to inform and evaluate interventions that reduce infant mortality, in partial fulfillment of the Truth and Reconciliation Call to Action No. 19.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 8 Safe Sleep , Strategy Government of Canada

Recommendation Eight: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Canada resource an implementation strategy to expand prenatal and postnatal maternal child health programs, in consultation with First Nations and Metis Governments, into all of Manitoba’s First Nations communities.

DETAILS:  

  • Consideration will be given to the expansion of existing programs such as the Strengthening Families Maternal Child Health Program.
  • A long-term funding model will be developed to expand maternal and child health programs to all First Nations communities in Manitoba.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health by ensuring appropriate prenatal and postnatal care for mothers (UNCRC, Art. 24)
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 7 Safe Sleep Manitoba Health

Recommendation Seven: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care), in consultation with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs’ First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba, develop a smoking cessation resource that prenatal healthcare providers and child welfare service providers can make available to expectant mothers.

DETAILS:  

  • A Manitoba-made resource will be developed that explains the risks associated with prenatal smoking and sleep-related infant deaths.
  • All pregnant women who disclose smoking will be provided with accurate and culturally appropriate information about smoking cessation.
  • The resource will be distributed to all prenatal healthcare providers and child welfare service providers across Manitoba.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health by ensuring appropriate prenatal and postnatal care for mothers (UNCRC, Article 24).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 6 Safe Sleep Manitoba Health

Recommendation Six: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care), in partnership with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs’ First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba, develop an accredited online training module on safe infant sleep practices, accessible through the Shared Health Learning Management System (LMS).

DETAILS:  

  • Training will be informed by the best available evidence, including the AAP Recommendations on Safe Sleep.
  • All Public Health Nurses, child and family services providers, and Families First Home Visitors in Manitoba should complete the online training about safe infant sleep practices.
  • Training should become part of mandatory training for newly hired Public Health Nurses, Families First Home Visitors, child welfare providers, and Early Childhood Educators.
  • Healthcare providers and child and family services providers across the province will have access and receive accredited training.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health by ensuring that all segments of society – including parents – have access to education and are supported in the use of basic knowledge of child health (UNCRC, Article 24).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 5 Safe Sleep Government of Manitoba

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate recommends that public education materials (e.g., books, pamphlets, videos, posters, etc.) developed by the Government of Manitoba, as part of any safe sleep education campaign, be written in accessible language and available in the prominent Indigenous languages of Manitoba.

DETAILS:  

  • This public education campaign will be targeted to vulnerable families and be culturally appropriate, both in content and delivery.
  • Education materials will be developed for different audiences including expectant mothers, other caregivers such as fathers, grandparents, and extended family members.
  • Education materials will include multiple risk factors, given that few sleep-related infant deaths involve a single risk factor.
  • The public education campaign will recognize barriers to information access by considering various types of media including print, radio, video, public advertisement, internet and social media. In particular, radio has been successfully used by the Sacred Babies program to reach remote communities.
  • Education campaign materials will be distributed to families during prenatal care, in hospital, at The Birth Centre, and by Public Health Nurses post-partum public health visits. Materials will also be made available to all childcare centres, obstetrician and pediatrician offices in Manitoba, community organizations that deliver prenatal and post-natal education classes, and First Nations community health centres/nursing stations.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health by ensuring that all segments of society – including parents – have access to education and are supported in the use of basic knowledge of child health (UNCRC, Article 24).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 4 Safe Sleep Manitoba Health

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the public education campaign be informed by data presented in this report and by evidence on effective risk communication and behaviour modification.

DETAILS:  

  • This public education campaign will be targeted to vulnerable families and be culturally appropriate, both in content and delivery.
  • Education materials will be developed for different audiences including expectant mothers, other caregivers such as fathers, grandparents, and extended family members.
  • Education materials will include multiple risk factors, given that few sleep-related infant deaths involve a single risk factor.
  • The public education campaign will recognize barriers to information access by considering various types of media including print, radio, video, public advertisement, internet and social media. In particular, radio has been successfully used by the Sacred Babies program to reach remote communities.
  • Education campaign materials will be distributed to families during prenatal care, in hospital, at The Birth Centre, and by Public Health Nurses post-partum public health visits. Materials will also be made available to all childcare centres, obstetrician and pediatrician offices in Manitoba, community organizations that deliver prenatal and post-natal education classes, and First Nations community health centres/nursing stations.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health by ensuring that all segments of society – including parents – have access to education and are supported in the use of basic knowledge of child health (UNCRC, Article 24).

 

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 3 Safe Sleep Manitoba Health

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care), in partnership with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs’ First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba, and First Nations and Metis governments develop, carry out, and subsequently evaluate, a new public education campaign that raises awareness of the known risk factors associated with sleep-related infant deaths.

DETAILS:  

  • This public education campaign will be targeted to vulnerable families and be culturally appropriate, both in content and delivery.
  • Education materials will be developed for different audiences including expectant mothers, other caregivers such as fathers, grandparents, and extended family members.
  • Education materials will include multiple risk factors, given that few sleep-related infant deaths involve a single risk factor.
  • The public education campaign will recognize barriers to information access by considering various types of media including print, radio, video, public advertisement, internet and social media. In particular, radio has been successfully used by the Sacred Babies program to reach remote communities.
  • Education campaign materials will be distributed to families during prenatal care, in hospital, at The Birth Centre, and by Public Health Nurses post-partum public health visits. Materials will also be made available to all childcare centres, obstetrician and pediatrician offices in Manitoba, community organizations that deliver prenatal and post-natal education classes, and First Nations community health centres/nursing stations.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health by ensuring that all segments of society – including parents – have access to education and are supported in the use of basic knowledge of child health (UNCRC, Article 24).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 2 Safe Sleep , Safe Sleep Surface Government of Canada

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Canada, in consultation with the First Nations governments of Manitoba, develop and implement a plan to ensure that no infant living in Manitoba First Nations communities is without a safe sleeping surface (crib, bassinette, or culturally appropriate safe alternative), in line with Jordan’s Principle.

DETAILS:  

  • An action plan will prioritize the rights of children over jurisdictional or administrative barriers (child-first principle) and achievement of true equality in outcomes (substantive equality).
  • The action plan will explore recycling and loan programs, and other cost-effective and innovative approaches.
  • Parents or caregivers living with low incomes and needing a safe sleep surface will be identified through multiple systems including the health care system, Employment and Income Assistance, the Manitoba Prenatal Benefit Program, and Child and Family Services.
  • Parents or caregivers in need of a safe sleep surface will be able to self-identify.
  • As per the principle of non-discrimination detailed in the UNCRC, eligibility criteria will ensure that there is no discrimination of any kind, including national or social origins, or on the basis of race, or residence in a rural or remote community.
  • Existing governmental policies in the child welfare and social assistance programs that relate to the distribution of safe sleep surfaces will be reviewed and revised if they do not comply with the child-first principle.
  • Barriers to accessing cribs will be identified and mitigated.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba will have a safe sleep surface as is necessary to realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health and to live and thrive (UNCRC, Art. 24, 6).
  • The Government of Manitoba will ensure that caregivers have the financial and physical resources they need to support child health and wellbeing (UNCRC, Article 27).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
March 13, 2020 Safe and Sound: A Special Report on the Unexpected Sleep-Related Deaths of 145 Manitoba Infants – Recommendation 1 Safe Sleep , Safe Sleep Surface Government of Manitoba

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba develop and implement an action plan, in consultation with First Nations and Metis governments, to ensure that every infant in Manitoba under 24 months has a safe sleep surface (crib, bassinette, or culturally appropriate safe alternative) in which to sleep. The action plan ought to be targeted to both expectant parents and caregivers of infants under 24 months who cannot afford to purchase a safe sleep surface. The action plan will be designed and delivered based on the child-first and substantive equality principles.

DETAILS:  

  • An action plan will prioritize the rights of children over jurisdictional or administrative barriers (child-first principle) and achievement of true equality in outcomes (substantive equality).
  • The action plan will explore recycling and loan programs, and other cost-effective and innovative approaches.
  • Parents or caregivers living with low incomes and needing a safe sleep surface will be identified through multiple systems including the health care system, Employment and Income Assistance, the Manitoba Prenatal Benefit Program, and Child and Family Services.
  • Parents or caregivers in need of a safe sleep surface will be able to self-identify.
  • As per the principle of non-discrimination detailed in the UNCRC, eligibility criteria will ensure that there is no discrimination of any kind, including national or social origins, or on the basis of race, or residence in a rural or remote community.
  • Existing governmental policies in the child welfare and social assistance programs that relate to the distribution of safe sleep surfaces will be reviewed and revised if they do not comply with the child-first principle.
  • Barriers to accessing cribs will be identified and mitigated.

IMPACT:

  • All infants in Manitoba will have a safe sleep surface as is necessary to realize their inherent rights to the highest attainable standard of health and to live and thrive (UNCRC, Art. 24, 6).
  • The Government of Manitoba will ensure that caregivers have the financial and physical resources they need to support child health and wellbeing (UNCRC, Article 27).
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 11, 2021 Still Waiting. Investigating Child Maltreatment after the Phoenix Sinclair Inquiry – Recommendation 5 Child Welfare Training Manitoba Families

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate recommends that the Department of Families, through the Joint Training Team, develop and administer mandatory training for front line workers and supervisors on the risk and protective factors of child maltreatment and best practices for reunification.

DETAILS:  

  • Develop training on the risk and protective factors of child maltreatment and best practices for reunification.
  • Schedule and administer the training regularly.
  • Track the number and percentage of existing and new front-line staff and supervisors who have received the training.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 11, 2021 Still Waiting. Investigating Child Maltreatment after the Phoenix Sinclair Inquiry – Recommendation 2 Parent Treatment/Resources Government of Manitoba

Recommendation Two: Consistent with Call to Action 5 of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba work with First Nations and Metis governments and community stakeholders to ensure access to evidence-informed and culturally-safe parenting programs and resources for caregivers of children under the age of five in every community across Manitoba, with attention to rural and remote communities.

DETAILS:  

  • Assess available parenting resources in Manitoba for children under the age of five.
  • Identify geographic gaps in resources and/or areas where existing resources can be improved.
  • Develop and/or enhance resource supports for caregivers.
  • Integrate parenting resources within existing community infrastructure (schools, community resource centres, etc.), where possible.
  • Create and implement a strategy that ensures the ongoing dissemination of information regarding available parenting resources to caregivers of young children across Manitoba.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 11, 2021 Still Waiting. Investigating Child Maltreatment after the Phoenix Sinclair Inquiry – Recommendation 1 Phoenix Sinclair Inquiry Government of Manitoba

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba implement the outstanding recommendations from the Phoenix Sinclair Inquiry.

DETAILS:  

  • Review national and international best-practice and evidence-informed research from experts in the areas of youth mental health and addictions.
  • Using information gathered from experts and in consultation with community stakeholders, including Indigenous leadership, Elders, and children and youth, develop a plan for a provincial application of a long-term treatment model. The model must be culturally informed and safe and staff must be culturally competent.
  • Put into practice the treatment model and evaluate its effectiveness in achieving the intended outcomes.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 8 Legal , Proclamation of ACYA Government of Manitoba

Recommendation Eight: Proclaim the outstanding sections of the ACYA. The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba set a proclamation date for the remaining portions of The Advocate for Children and Youth Act in the spring of 2020.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 7 Mental Health and Addictions , Planning Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Seven: A transparent framework for child and youth mental health and addictions health system transformation. The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that in a commitment to transparency and accountability, Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Manitoba Health and Seniors Care) publicly release its framework and plan for transforming the youth mental health and addictions system in Manitoba so recent and anticipated investments and announcements can be understood by Manitobans not as one-off announcements, but as part of an overall tiered strategy for improving access, coordination, content, and capacity of the child and youth health care system in the province.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 6 Mental Health and Addictions , Residential Treatment Government of Manitoba , Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Six: Long-term residential mental health treatment for youth. The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Government of Manitoba, through the Department of Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Manitoba Health and Seniors Care) create a long-term, residential treatment centre for youth who are in the top tier of mental health care needs and for whom less intensive options have been ineffective.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 5 Mental Health and Addictions , System Navigators Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Five: Create mental health system Navigators to help children and youth. The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care) develop, implement and fund mental health and addictions system Navigators, who act as case managers for children and youth who are accessing the upper tiers of the youth mental health and addiction system, similar to Ontario’s model. These Navigators should be knowledgeable and well-trained and offer case coordination and rapid response services to ensure children and youth know their health care plan, can access appropriate services, and ensure case reviews are initiated when services are not effective. Further, much like the requirement for child and family services workers, mental health and addictions Navigators should provide services in accordance with provincial standards of care that change in their intensity and frequency according to the assessed levels of risk to a child or youth.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 4 Access , Mental Health and Addictions Manitoba Health and Seniors Care

Recommendation Four: Improve access points for children and youth experiencing a mental health crisis. The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (now Health and Seniors Care), along with representatives from Shared Health, children’s emergency staff and child and adolescent psychiatry – in accordance with their master plan overview of Health Sciences Centre – evaluate practices at the Health Sciences Centre – Children’s Hospital Emergency Room, with the intent of developing and implementing a child and youth-centred, separate and specialized access point that meets the needs of children and youth who are experiencing a mental health crisis.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 3 Bullying , Mental Health and Addictions Manitoba Education and Training

Recommendation Three: Safe and Caring Schools: A Whole School Approach to Planning for Safety and Belonging is a valuable tool created by the Department of Education and is an example of best practices for creating positive school environments. The Manitoba Advocate recommends that Manitoba Education continue its work to promote these supporting documents with Manitoba school divisions because all schools in Manitoba should be implementing the optional tools in the Safe and Caring Schools supporting documents.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2021
Date Response Due: 01/2022
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 2 Policy , Suspensions and Expulsions Manitoba Education and Training

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Education, with participation from all school divisions, develop a province-wide policy to limit, reduce, and phase-out exclusionary practices, except in situations of imminent safety risk to students and staff. This policy should provide evidence-informed disciplinary alternatives that are in line with the best interests of the child and respect the right of children and youth to education.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
February 27, 2020 The Slow Disappearance of Matthew: A Family’s Fight for Youth Mental Health Care in the Wake of Bullying and Mental Illness – Recommendation 1 Mental Health and Addictions , Schools Manitoba Education and Training

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Education, in conjunction with Manitoba school divisions, highlight and promote the provincial learning objectives that focus on mental health literacy and mental well-being coping skills for all students from Grades K-12. Secondly, Manitoba Education and Manitoba school divisions should ensure that training is available to all teachers that will support and facilitate their classroom skills in mental health promotion.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2021
Date Response Due: 01/2022
March 12, 2019 A Place Where it Feels Like Home: The Story of Tina Fontaine – Recommendation 5 Missing Youth , Sexual Exploitation Manitoba Families

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Families, in consultation with other government departments and relevant stakeholders, create a new protocol to ensure that response plans are created for missing youth in general, and sexually exploited youth in particular who are at risk of imminent harm.

DETAILS – Manitoba Families to ensure that this protocol:  

  • Distinguishes between absent and missing youth.  
  • Require that plans are initiated the first time a child goes missing, and that there is a further requirement to ensure the response plan is consistently reflective of the harm and dangers that are present in the individual child’s life.  
  • Provide timelines for when service providers must report missing children and act to locate them as quickly as possible, including when their whereabouts are known, when and how to report their absence to police.  
  • Include clear components for response plans and include any known addresses where the youth may be located or is known to frequent.  
  • Include 24/7 provisions for a joint child welfare and justice response in Winnipeg and ongoing capacity for a joint child welfare and justice response for missing and sexually exploited youth in rural areas.  
  • Includes consultation with persons with lived experience, community members, and relevant stakeholders.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 12, 2019 A Place Where it Feels Like Home: The Story of Tina Fontaine – Recommendation 4 Safe and Secure Treatment Facilities Government of Manitoba

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Manitoba government, through its Deputy Ministers of Health and Social Policy and Priorities (DMHSPP) committee, work with the government’s Legislation and Strategic Policy Branch to analyse the province of Alberta’s Protection of Sexually Exploited Children Act and Alberta’s Drug-Endangered Children Act to determine how safe and secure treatment facilities can be introduced in Manitoba. It is
further recommended that the DMHSPP committee develop a plan to ensure the continuum of services for children and youth includes safe, secure, home-like settings for treatment and programming when children and youth are at imminent risk of harm or death.

DETAILS:

  • The continuum of services plan developed by the DMHSPP committee must define imminent risk, ensuring the definition contemplates issues of homelessness, addiction, and sexual exploitation.
  • The development of a plan for safe and secure treatment facilities must include consultation with subject matter experts, persons with lived experience, and community stakeholders to ensure the treatment settings are safe, secure, therapeutic, effective, and culturally informed.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 12, 2019 A Place Where it Feels Like Home: The Story of Tina Fontaine – Recommendation 3 Victim Support Services Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice evaluate the continuum of victim support services for children and develop quality control measures to ensure that services are child-centred and provided in a timely manner.
DETAILS:

  • Manitoba Justice to examine the criteria regarding how child benefits are approved or denied and subsequently clarify and distributed to victim applicants.
  • Manitoba Justice to clarify current legislation and policies that are contradictory related to access to compensation services and benefits.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
March 12, 2019 A Place Where it Feels Like Home: The Story of Tina Fontaine – Recommendation 2 Child and Youth Mental Health Manitoba Health and Community Wellness

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health and Seniors Care expedite the public release of a clear implementation plan to address the child and youth-specific recommendations contained in the report on Improving Access and Coordination of Mental Health and Addiction Services: A Provincial Strategy for all Manitobans (“Virgo Report”).

DETAILS:

  • Manitoba Health and Seniors Care’s plan must ensure that resources are prioritized in rural and remote locations to ensure equitable service levels for children and youth regardless of where they are living.
  • The implementation plan must reflect the client populations who require them and must, therefore, be culturally-informed, and be developed in ways that reflect the voices and preferences of Indigenous health experts, Indigenous leadership, children and youth, and others with lived experiences.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
March 12, 2019 A Place Where it Feels Like Home: The Story of Tina Fontaine – Recommendation 1 School Suspensions , and Expulsions Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Education and Training ensure its recently established Commission on Kindergarten to Grade 12 Education review the measurement of and response to absenteeism across Manitoba. It is further recommended that the Commission review the use of out-of-school suspensions and expulsions, with the goal of developing a province-wide strategy to limit, reduce, and phase-out exclusionary practices,
except in situations of imminent safety risk to students and staff. This review and strategy should provide evidence-informed practices that are in line with the best interests of the child and respect the right to education for children and youth.

DETAILS:

  • The Commission to identify how school divisions can be resourced with the capacity to measure, assess, and respond to the underlying causes of school absenteeism. Building and sustaining relationships with students who are experiencing absenteeism and their families.
  • Manitoba Education and Training continue efforts to improve student attendance by increasing public awareness of the right to education, identifying improvements to communication with parents and guardians around absenteeism, and to provide transparent information to the public about suspensions and expulsions.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
February 21, 2019 Learning from Nelson Mandela: A Report on the Use of Solitary Confinement and Pepper Spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities – Recommendation 6 Justice Alternatives , Mental Health Treatment Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Six: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice and Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living immediately embark on the development of a specialized health facility led and run by mental health professionals to provide evidence-informed programming for youth with mental illnesses or cognitive vulnerabilities in custody, including youth who are found not criminally responsible.

DETAILS:

  • That Manitoba Justice conduct comprehensive mental health assessments, followed by ongoing treatment and assessments by mental health professionals within 72 hours of youth entering custody.
  • That Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living, with the full cooperation of Manitoba Justice, evaluate the ability and capacity for the Manitoba Youth Centre to serve as a mental health facility as provided by Facilities Designation Regulation for the purposes of The Mental Health Act.
  • That Manitoba Justice collaborate with Manitoba Families, Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living, youth with lived and living experience in correctional facilities, subject-matter experts, correctional officers, and Indigenous Knowledge Keepers as well as representatives with critical perspectives from the juvenile justice, health care, advocacy, and legislative arenas in the development of a detailed action plan with timelines and measurable outcomes to address the mental health and
    wellness of youth in custody.
  • That Manitoba Justice identify, measure, and publicly report on the therapeutic alternative outcomes of the action plan annually, including rates of recidivism and the proportion of Indigenous youth in custody as outlined by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Calls to Action.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 21, 2019 Learning from Nelson Mandela: A Report on the Use of Solitary Confinement and Pepper Spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities – Recommendation 5 Justice Alternatives Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice respond to the overrepresentation of youth with mental illnesses, cognitive vulnerabilities, and childhood trauma by developing an action plan with Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living and Manitoba Families for the implementation of evidence-informed and culturally-safe therapeutic behavioural management alternatives to solitary confinement and pepper spray, with the goals of
enhancing the rehabilitation and successful reintegration of youth into Manitoba communities, reducing recidivism, and improving the public safety of all Manitobans.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 21, 2019 Learning from Nelson Mandela: A Report on the Use of Solitary Confinement and Pepper Spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities – Recommendation 4 Pepper Spray Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice immediately prohibit the use of pepper spray in youth custody facilities except in situations of immediate risk to life* to correctional staff or other youth in custody by amending The Correctional Services Regulation.

DETAILS:

  • That Manitoba Justice prohibit the use of pepper spray to halt self-harming behaviour, barring no other serious and imminent risks to the lives of other youth or correctional officers  
  • That Manitoba Justice consider the funding of cell doors which open both ways and can prevent the deployment of pepper spray due to forced entries.  
  • That Manitoba Justice immediately notify the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth of any incident where pepper spray was discharged. Notification must include the full incident report, age of the youth, race, ethnicity, reasons for use, number of times pepper spray was deployed, and followup medical and psychological treatment.  
  • That Manitoba Justice appoint an external and independent body to review and investigate every incident of pepper spray use, and provide recommendations of how the incident could be prevented. 

*For the purpose of this recommendation, ‘immediate’ shall be defined as proximate danger to life as perceived by an objective third party in the circumstances.

Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
February 21, 2019 Learning from Nelson Mandela: A Report on the Use of Solitary Confinement and Pepper Spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities – Recommendation 3 Solitary Confinement Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Justice collect, track, analyse, and report on incidents of segregation across youth custody facilities to ensure transparency and accountability.

DETAILS:

  • That Manitoba Justice invest in the development of a centralized information management system to implement a process to aggregate data and analyse trends on the use of segregation by youth, reflecting transfers between institutions.  
  • That Manitoba Justice submit a report quarterly to the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth on the number of youth placed in any form of segregation; the length of time each youth was in segregation, the race, ethnicity, age, and gender of each youth; facility staffing levels at the time of confinement; the reason each youth was placed in segregation; any knowledge of mental health (illness or cognitive vulnerability), and services provided while in confinement.  
  • That Manitoba Justice report publicly on aggregated data of the use of segregation practices in youth custody facilities through their Annual Report.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 21, 2019 Learning from Nelson Mandela: A Report on the Use of Solitary Confinement and Pepper Spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities – Recommendation 2 Solitary Confinement Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Manitoba government and Manitoba Justice restrict the use of any form of segregation under 24 hours in youth custody facilities through an amendment to The Correctional Services Regulation.

DETAILS:

  • That Manitoba Justice restrict the use of any form of segregation for the purposes of discipline, punishment, coercion, convenience, or retaliation.  
  • That Manitoba Justice restrict the use of segregation by legislating maximum time limitations for these vulnerable populations and communicate clear expectations of what is required from the youth to be removed from segregation.  
  • That Manitoba Justice track and require comprehensive mental health assessments for youth subjected to any period of segregation.  
  • That Manitoba Justice conduct consultations with relevant stakeholders, including the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth, in preparation for amending The Correctional Services Regulation.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
February 21, 2019 Learning from Nelson Mandela: A Report on the Use of Solitary Confinement and Pepper Spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities – Recommendation 1 Solitary Confinement Manitoba Justice

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Manitoba government and Manitoba Justice amend The Correctional Services Act to prohibit the solitary confinement of youth for a period exceeding 24 hours, per the Nelson Mandela Rules.

DETAILS:

  • That Manitoba Justice establish a maximum time limit on the use of segregation of 24 hours without exception, thereby prohibiting solitary confinement by amending The Correctional Services Act.  
  • That Manitoba Justice immediately identify all youth that are currently in solitary confinement conditions and develop a youth-centred and trauma-informed transitional process to ensure they successfully exit from the conditions of solitary confinement. This shall include: 
    1. Engaging a team of licensed mental health professionals to conduct and document a comprehensive mental health re-evaluation of all youth held in solitary confinement, including a confidential face-to-face out of cell interview by a licensed mental health professional; 
    2. A plan for substantial re-socialization of youth in a group setting; 
    3. Offering and documenting regular mental health counseling and culturally appropriate spiritual care, if requested, to assist in the transition; and 
    4. Including the participation of youth in the process and, if requested, the youth’s legal counsel and/or a representative of the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth in the development of this transition plan.  
  • As per the practices of other Canadian provinces, and until the above recommendation is fully implemented to ban the practice, Manitoba Justice notify the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth of any incident of segregation extending over 24 hours and collaborate with the Manitoba Advocate on the development of a plan to address such incidents going forward. This measure should begin immediately. 
  • That Manitoba Justice conduct consultations with relevant stakeholders, including the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth, in preparation for amending The Correctional Services Act.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
December 13, 2018 In Need of Protection: Angel's Story – Recommendation 6 Substance Use Treatment Manitoba Health

Recommendation Six: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health and Seniors Care, in collaboration with the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba and other stakeholders, amend The Youth Drug Stabilization (Support for Parents) Act so that longer warrants or successive warrants are possible to ensure children and youth get the medically supported withdrawal management services they need based on evidence-informed treatment best practices for addictions (e.g. methamphetamine, alcohol, opioids).

DETAILS – Work to this effect should:  

  • Be overseen by an existing inter-departmental working group such as the Deputy Ministers of Health and Social Policy and Priorities (DMHSPP) committee/Healthy Child Deputy Ministers’ Committee (HCDMC); and  
  • Be guided by evidence-informed best practices and knowledge in the areas of supported withdrawal management, addiction and mental health assessments, and accessibility of treatment services for children and youth.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
December 13, 2018 In Need of Protection: Angel's Story – Recommendation 5 Safe and Secure Treatment Facilities Manitoba Health and Community Wellness

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health and Seniors Care and Department of Families, in collaboration with the Addictions Foundation of Manitoba, (1) review and reform the province’s treatment programs for children and youth and (2) create safe and secure facilities for youth in Manitoba who are sexually exploited and harmfully involved in substance misuse.

DETAILS – This should:  

  • Involve community organizations;  
  • Address the limitations, barriers and occupancy rate concerns of existing resources (e.g. Compass, YASU);  
  • Include a harm reduction policy specific to children and youth; 
  • Recognize that “secure facilities” do not need to be institutions, but can be secured via adequate staffing, geographic locations, and can further be holistic and culturally-based home-like settings; 
  • Involve youth, experiential, and Indigenous stakeholders;  Address accessibility challenges related to addiction and mental health treatment services;  
  • Be informed by a scan of jurisdictions who successfully incorporate short and long-term safe and secure settings in their continuum of care models for youth who are sexually exploited; and  
  • Be included in the Provincial Mental Health and Addictions Strategy.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
December 13, 2018 In Need of Protection: Angel's Story – Recommendation 4 Accountability , CFS Service Standards Manitoba Families

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Minister of Families, through the Child and Family Services Division (CFSD), in collaboration with the four child and family services Authorities, (1) conduct an evidence-informed review and update of existing provincial service standards, and (2) establish province-wide measures of service accountability through a provincial quality assurance framework. Both the service standards and the quality assurance measures must be consistent throughout the province, culturally appropriate, and supported and enforced by the governing child and family services Authorities within their child and family services agencies. As per provincial legislation, quality assurance measures at the authority level must then be assessed and monitored by the Minister of Families.

DETAILS – This province-wide quality assurance framework should include:  

  • An evidence-informed review and update of existing Child and Family Service standards.
  • That the updated standards reflect a requirement that service models being used in the CFS system move away from an apprehension model and toward service models that require meaningful engagement of family, extended family, and community, which is in the best interests of children.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
December 13, 2018 In Need of Protection: Angel's Story – Recommendation 3 Sexual Exploitation Manitoba Families

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Communication Services Manitoba, Manitoba Education and Training, Manitoba Families, Manitoba Justice, Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living, Manitoba Status of Women, and Manitoba Indigenous and Northern Relations collaborate with youth advisory groups, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, Winnipeg Police Service, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Indigenous and community organizations, and the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth to carry out ongoing public education via awareness campaigns that (a) denounce the sexual exploitation of children and youth and (b) raise awareness about the ongoing demand for purchasing sex and/or sexually exploiting children and youth in Manitoba.

DETAILS – This plan should:  

  • Be centrally driven by an existing inter-departmental working group such as the Deputy Ministers of Health and Social Policy and Priorities (DMHSPP) committee/Healthy Child Deputy Ministers’ Committee (HCDMC);  
  • Consider how best to reach those most in need of its information;  
  • Include youth, survivor, and Indigenous community consultation;  
  • Consider if names of adults who are sexually exploiting youth should be publicly shared as is the practice in other provinces;  
  • Be evidence-informed in terms of clear outputs and outcomes and learn from successful campaigns in other jurisdictions;  
  • Avoid sensationalism, inappropriate imagery, or language;  
  • Draw awareness to bystander legislation that provides that all Manitobans must report child sexual exploitation; and  
  • Include provisions for public education and awareness campaigns that coincide with Manitoba’s Stop Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day every March.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
December 13, 2018 In Need of Protection: Angel's Story – Recommendation 2 Sexual Exploitation Manitoba Families

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Education and Training, Manitoba Families, Manitoba Justice, and Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living engage with experts in childhood trauma and Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) in order to develop a trauma prevention and response plan of action to (a) educate service providers and the public on ACEs, and (b) create appropriate, accessible immediate and long-term evidence informed interventions to address the trauma crisis that is ongoing in Manitoba.

DETAILS – These activities should include:  

  • The release of the Department of Families’ research entitled, Collaboration and Best Practices to End Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation in Manitoba;  
  • Ongoing data collection to inform clear performance measurements reflected in service purchase agreements (SPAs); 
  • An independent third party external evaluation of the outcomes and outputs of the Strategy to be published upon completion. This evaluation should utilize the Department of Families’ research and specifically include analysis of existing 
    • specialized group and foster care placements for sexually exploited youth, 
    • crisis stabilization support for sexually exploited youth, 
    • sexual exploitation investigations, 
    • regional teams funded by Tracia’s Trust,
    • provincial training on the sexual exploitation of children and youth, 
    • the effectiveness of the Strategy for children and youth who are not in care; and 
    • the effectiveness of the Strategy in Indigenous communities as per Indigenous methods of evaluation;  
  • A pilot of TERF’s Sexual Exploitation Risk Assessment Tool across the four Child and Family Services Authorities;  
  • The development of a continuum of care informed by youth consultation and collaboration with Indigenous partners (e.g. Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak and Southern Chiefs’ Organization) to create/reform service programs to address the co-occurring needs of sexually exploited youth (e.g. mental health, addictions, justice, and education); and  
  • An expansion of StreetReach (including youth who are not in care), the Winnipeg Outreach Network (WON), and services for youth who are sexually exploited in First Nations and remote and rural communities. The expansion of each of these services should be paired with continuous quality improvement tracking tools to monitor outcomes, track progress towards service delivery goals, and respond to the evolving needs of sexually exploited youth.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
December 13, 2018 In Need of Protection: Angel's Story – Recommendation 1 Adverse Childhood Experiences , Childhood Trauma Government of Manitoba

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Education and Training, Manitoba Families, Manitoba Justice, and Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living engage with experts in childhood trauma and Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) in order to develop a trauma prevention and response plan of action to (a) educate service providers and the public on ACEs, and (b) create appropriate, accessible immediate and long-term evidence-informed interventions to address the trauma crisis that is ongoing in Manitoba.

Date Last Response Received: 02/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
October 19, 2018 Documenting the Decline: The Dangerous Space Between Good Intentions and Meaningful Interventions – Recommendation 6 Training Manitoba Families

Recommendation Six: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Families in partnership with the Child and Family Services (CFS) Authorities: (1) clarify training content and expectations of workers and supervisors with respect to CFS minimum provincial standards, and (2) prioritize the development of high quality, culturally appropriate, modernized, and accessible training on the minimum provincial service standards within two years. The Advocate further recommends that all existing workers who have not received training on minimum standards and all new CFS workers be required to complete this training within three to six months.

DETAILS:

  • That the Department of Families work with the four CFS authorities to clearly define training content, timelines, and requirement for CFS workers and supervisors per s.1.3.1 of the minimum standards manual.  
  • That the CFS authorities ensure that their CFS agencies adhere to standard 1.8.1 Workforce Qualifications and that clear education and training plans are developed and monitored for staff who do not meet this standard.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
October 19, 2018 Documenting the Decline: The Dangerous Space Between Good Intentions and Meaningful Interventions – Recommendation 5 Youth Probation Orders Manitoba Justice

Recommendation Five: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Justice improve communication across the divisions within its department, including probation services, victim services, and prosecution services, as well as with the legal community (e.g. legal aid), and the courts to ensure that probation orders are relevant, effective, child-centred, realistic (given limitations in remote and rural communities), and achievable. The Advocate further recommends that the Department of Justice evaluate their capacity to provide the programming for youth to meet their probation conditions and determine whether or not existing programs and services are sufficient and accessible to youth living in rural and remote locations. When gaps are identified, strategies for culturally appropriate alternatives and program delivery need to be developed.
DETAILS:

  • The Advocate recognizes that it does not have jurisdiction over the courts. Following this report, we recommend that the Department of Justice initiate a process of improved communication and dialogue within its department, with the courts, and other key stakeholders to ensure that probation orders are relevant, effective, child-centred, realistic, and achievable. 
  • The Department of Justice’s evaluation of existing capacity to provide programming for youth to meet their probation conditions should contain an overview of existing accountability data and analysis of the effectiveness and accessibility of current services and programming delivered to youth in Manitoba. 
  • A plan is needed for situations when probation services do not have the capacity to provide ongoing supervision, monitoring, or formal programming such that collaboration and partnership with local communities occurs to devise a strategy to deliver these services.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 08/2024
October 19, 2018 Documenting the Decline: The Dangerous Space Between Good Intentions and Meaningful Interventions – Recommendation 4 Substance Use Treatment Manitoba Health and Community Wellness

Recommendation Four: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that Manitoba Health and Seniors Care, together with front-line addiction service providers in Manitoba, Healthy Child Manitoba, Indigenous communities, and subject matter experts on addictions, immediately respond to the lack of effective substance use treatment services for youth by prioritizing the development and implementation of a youth addiction action strategy. This strategy should be based on best practice evidence with the objective of ensuring that children and youth across Manitoba can exercise their right to the highest attainable standard of health.

DETAILS:

  • That Manitoba Health and Seniors Care, go beyond the VIRGO analysis and conduct a service inventory of all child and youth addiction services in Manitoba, their locations, target populations, philosophies, eligibility criteria, utilization rates, and occupancy rates. 
  • That Manitoba Health and Seniors Care expand upon the VIRGO analysis to evaluate existing gaps in substance use treatment and addiction services available to children and youth, including recommendations as to how existing services could be repurposed. 
  • That the Manitoba’s Mental Health and Addictions Strategy developed by Manitoba Health and Seniors Care include a plan that ensures implementation of evidenceinformed family-centred substance use and addiction programs. 
  • That Manitoba Health and Seniors Care oversee regular performance monitoring and program evaluations to ensure that all publicly-funded and provinciallymandated agencies are accountable to provide evidence-informed addiction services and programs for children and youth. 
  • That all provincially-funded addiction service providers working with children and youth implement policies and procedures for ongoing training on the identification and reporting of cases where a child is in need of protection as outlined in The Child and Family Services Act.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
October 19, 2018 Documenting the Decline: The Dangerous Space Between Good Intentions and Meaningful Interventions – Recommendation 3 Coordination , Mental Health Services Manitoba Health and Community Wellness

Recommendation Three: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends Manitoba Health and Seniors Care implement, in full, recommendation 5.4, per the Virgo report, as follows: Establish a concerted cross-sectoral process to reduce perceived and real jurisdictional boundaries that challenge access to, and coordination of, services. The process of developing this [Manitoba’s Mental Health and Addictions] Strategy, as well as any new opportunities and resources for working together (e.g., through Jordan’s Principle), should be viewed as an accelerator of a new period of trust and collaboration based on shared beliefs and strengths among all partners, and should include an interest in wellness, hope and family/community health.

DETAILS: 

  • Specifically, provisions in the following areas are needed within Manitoba’s Mental Health and Addictions Strategy: 
    • Post-discharge supports for children and youth who have experienced mental health concerns, including addictions issues; 
    • A continuum of services, reflective of culturally-safe and trauma-informed approaches, for all of Manitoba’s children and youth, including Indigenous children and youth, and those who live in First Nations communities; and 
    • A continuity of care model that ensures equitable standards of service when First Nations children and youth return to their home communities.
Date Last Response Received: 02/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024
October 19, 2018 Documenting the Decline: The Dangerous Space Between Good Intentions and Meaningful Interventions – Recommendation 2 School Suspensions Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning

Recommendation Two: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Department of Education and Training through Healthy Child Manitoba, and with participation from all school divisions, conduct an urgent review of the current use of out-of-school suspensions and expulsions, and develop a province-wide strategy to limit, reduce, and phase-out exclusionary practices, except in situations of imminent safety risk to students and staff. This review and strategy should provide evidence-informed disciplinary alternatives that are in line with the best interest of the child and respect the right of children and youth to education.

DETAILS:  

  • The Department of Education and Training will develop quality assurance and information management processes to: (1) define “imminent safety risk to students and staff”, (2) assess the prevalence, duration, and nature of school suspensions and expulsions in Manitoba, (3) analyse and ensure compliance with standards and best practices, (4) provide school boards with the necessary information to develop strategies to reduce and end school suspensions and exclusionary practices, and evaluate initiatives. Changes should be data informed and made considering the unique dynamics in Manitoba.  
  • The Department of Education and Training will implement province-wide and evidence-informed suspension and exclusion prevention policies and procedures for Manitoba schools. This is to then, in turn, inform training for: 
    • School division training for teachers, principals, and superintendents; 
    • Mentorship programs; and, 
    • Alternative approaches to suspension.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2022
Date Response Due: 01/2023
October 19, 2018 Documenting the Decline: The Dangerous Space Between Good Intentions and Meaningful Interventions – Recommendation 1 Coordination , Planning Government of Manitoba

Recommendation One: The Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth recommends that the Province of Manitoba respond to the persistent lack of coordination between services for children and youth by developing and implementing a provincial strategy to train service providers on the requirement to share information across systems and ensure children and youth are at the centre of all service provision. This is to be developed, delivered, and evaluated in consultation with Manitoba Education and Training, Manitoba Families, Manitoba Justice, and Manitoba Health, Healthy Living and Seniors.

DETAILS:  

  • In line with The Protecting Children (Information Sharing) Act, this training needs to be provided to all relevant service providers in Manitoba.  
  • As part of this strategy, an inter-ministerial working group at the director, manager, and staff levels is needed to identify and address barriers to collaborative sharing of information and ensure oversight of quality assurance protocols related to case management across service providers.
Date Last Response Received: 01/2023
Date Response Due: 01/2024