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The Implementation of the Looking After Children Approach in Quebec: views of children.* Marie-Andrée Poirier, Professor and researcher, Université de.

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Presentation on theme: "The Implementation of the Looking After Children Approach in Quebec: views of children.* Marie-Andrée Poirier, Professor and researcher, Université de."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Implementation of the Looking After Children Approach in Quebec: views of children.* Marie-Andrée Poirier, Professor and researcher, Université de Montréal Marie-Claude Simard, research coordinator, Université de Montréal Sylvie Desmarais, Association des centres jeunesse du Québec Renée Dumont, research professional, Université de Montréal Anne-Marie Richard, research professional, Université de Montréal © Positive Futures: 2006 ACWA Conference incorporating the 7 th International Looking after children conference August 2006 This project was possible thanks to the National Crime Prevention Strategy of the Canadian government, in collaboration with the Ministère de la Sécurité publique du Québec. Association des centres jeunesse du Québec

2 Agenda oA brief picture of the child welfare system in Quebec oThe LAC project in Quebec oThe evaluation process: -Objectives -Methodological aspects oResults: The point of view of the children on the LAC approach, the AAR and its effects

3 Canada : its provinces and territories oCanada is divided in 10 provinces and 3 territories and has a population of inhabitants. oIn Canada, there are two official languages: French and English. oThe province of Québec is French-speaking and has a population of inhabitants.

4 Quebec Youth Centres Youth centres are specialized regional establishments that ensure protection and rehabilitation to youths from 0 to 18 years old who are victims of neglect, physical or sexual abuse, behavioral problems or abandonment. Youth centres also provide help to the children’s families. They apply: oThe Youth Protection Act (YPA) oThe Young Offenders Act oThe Act respecting health services and social services oLegislative measures concerning adoption oLegislative measures concerning family mediation They also offer: oExpert services as regards to child custody oResearch services for previous history and reunion

5 Youth Centres: Resources and intervention o16 Youth Centres in Quebec o500 locations o9 000 direct service jobs oIn , children received services from the Youth Centres o50% of children having a follow-up are receiving in-home care.

6 Brief description of the child protection system in Quebec In Canada, child protection is within provincial jurisdiction. The Youth Protection Act was introduced in 1979 and revised in YPA is applied within an authoritarian context. YPA is to be used with caution and only when necessary.

7 Youth Protection Act Goals of the Act: To ensure the protection of certain minors whose security and development is or may be considered in danger. To intervene in order to protect the child and to improve the practice of certain parental responsibilities

8 Youth Protection Act (continued) Principles of the Act: oThe child’s interests and respect for his rights oThe primacy of parental responsability oThe child’s remaining in his family environment oParticipation of the community oMandatory intervention that respects people and their rights oDiligent intervention oIntervention that considers the characteristics of cultural communities and of Native communities

9 REPORT RECEIPT AND PROCESSING OF THE REPORT Process of applying the YPA ASSESSMENT OF THE SITUATION Security or development in danger DIRECTING CHILD TO YOUTH CENTER RESOURCES Security or development not in danger DIRECTING CHILD TO OTHER RESOURCES

10 Profile of the families served by the Youth centres 2  44 % of the families live with less than $ per year.  44 % of families are single-parent.  36 % of parents were themselves victims of maltreatments.  24 % of parents have a drug addiction problem.  22 % live a situation of conjugal violence.  17 % have mental health problems. 2 Centre jeunesse de Montréal – Institut universitaire (juin 2002), Marc Tourigny et al., Étude sur l’incidence et les caractéristiques des situations d’abus, de négligence, d’abandon, et de troubles de comportement sérieux signalées à la Direction de la protection de la jeunesse au Québec,

11 Foster Care foster children * Association des centres jeunesse du Québec (2006). Nos enfants, la richesse de tous, la responsabilité de chacun. Bilan des directeurs de la protection de la jeunesse Québec: Les Centres jeunesse du Québec.

12 The LAC Project in Quebec Implementation project : Partnership with the Association des Centres Jeunesse du Quebec 4 pilot sites in 4 regions of the province of Quebec Evaluation process (3 objectives): 1- Document the profile of foster children. 2- Evaluate the implementation of the LAC process in Youth Centres. 3- Evaluate the point of view of the participants on the LAC approach, the AAR and its effects.

13 Total of project’s participants ParticipantsYear 1Year 2 Children Foster parents 9975 Caseworkers4146

14 Methodological aspects Objectives Evaluate the point of view of the participants Tools Semi-Structured individual interviews Participants Children, Foster parents and Caseworkers Follow-up on the implementation for 2 years 12 months T2T1

15 Participation in interviews Year 1 and 2 ChildrenFoster parents CaseworkersTotal T1T2T1T2T1T2T1T2 Semi-structured individual interviews 168* *4 refusals, 4 not in the projects anymore

16 Participating children n = 16 Gender: 5 boys and 11 girls Average age: 12.4 years Average age at first placement: 7.6 years Average number of years in FF: 6 years Primary reason for current admission to service: Physical and sexual abuse (n=4) Neglected (n=4) Caregiver capacity (n=4) Abandonment (n=2)

17 LAC and the perspective of the children Understanding of the approach How do children explain the project? A glance at the tool (AAR) Presence when completing AAR Themes remembered Appreciation of the AAR Effects of the AAR use Learning about oneself Caseworkers and FP learn about the child Relationships: Caseworker-child FP-Child Other Care plan Planning the intervention with AAR

18 Conclusions oUnderstanding of the approach: the need to inform and involve children. oThe tool: adapting it to children. oThe children: the heart of the process.

19 Follow-up… oPlanning the care: the use of the AAR when preparing the care plan. oMeasuring the effects of the approach.

20 THE END ! Thank you all for your attention and participation.


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