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Child and Family Services (CFS) Overview and Statistics
Keeping children safe, supporting them, and helping them to reach their full potential is a shared responsibility. Usually, this is primarily the job of parents. However, some children and families need assistance. When they do, responsibility for keeping children safe is shared among Manitoba's CFS Division, the four CFS Authorities, child welfare agencies, and the Federal Government.
This shared responsibility includes developing a range of child and family services throughout Manitoba that support families, extended families, children and communities. Whenever possible, supports are provided to children in their own homes, in the least disruptive manner. It can also mean providing safe care for children apart from their families when needed.
Over the past several years, Manitoba's CFS system has grown as it has responded to community needs. Both the numbers of children and families receiving services, and the range of services and supports available, have increased.We think it is important to share information about this growth in order to make the services more accountable and easier to understand.
The First Nations Authorities (Northern and Southern) and their agencies receive Federal and Provincial funding. The Metis and General Authorities and their agencies are funded entirely by the Province.
The following graphs show total provincial funding for each Authority between 2005-06 and 2013-14.
CASE SENSITIVE FUNDING FOR FRONT-LINE WORKERS AND SUPERVISORS
The funding model provides case-sensitive funding and is determined by whether cases are protective or preventive in nature. The ratios are:
Case Managers provide services to families and children in care, and are funded for one direct service worker for every 25 cases (1:25).
Prevention Workers provide families with more intense support, for a shorter period of time and are funded for one direct service worker for every 20 cases (1:20).
Supervisors: funding is provided for one supervisor for every six case managers and prevention workers.
Designated Intake Workers provide emergency intake and assessment to families and make referrals to agencies for ongoing service. These workers also provide Emergency After Hours intake and referral services.
The following two graphs show the number of front line workers, designated intake workers and supervisors for 2012-13 and 2013-14.
Each year, data is gathered during preparation for the Annual Report.Cases are counted as of March 31st of each year.
Agencies not only support children in care, but also provide a range of services to many families with children at home. Agencies also provide services for expectant parents in order to provide assistance before their baby’s birth.
The graphics below include:
A graph showing the total number of families who received services between 2006 and 2014.
A pie chart showing the number of families receiving services as of March 31, 2014, by Authority.
A child entering care is a last resort, and a great deal of effort goes into finding alternate supports for a family. Unfortunately, there may be times when life circumstances have an impact on family functioning and parents’ abilities to meet the needs of their children. It is at these times that agencies need to become involved and support children outside of their family home.
Manitoba continues to identify ways to balance our shared responsibility for keeping children safe and the importance of keeping families together whenever possible. Considerable investments have been made to the Child and Family Services system since 2006. As a result, there are now more staff, more foster homes and an increase in other resources available to support children and families.
The graph below shows the number of children in care in Manitoba between 2006 and 2014. The pie chart following the graph shows the number of children in care as of March 31, 2014, by Authority.
While ensuring quality placement resources are available to meet the needs of children in care, we recognize children and families belong together.Manitoba continues to prioritize prevention and early intervention services to safely support children within their family, extended family and community.
We continue to seek creative options of kinship and customary care arrangements to ensure children who cannot remain in their family home retain their family, community, spiritual and ethnic heritage.
SUPPORTS BEYOND TERMINATION OF GUARDIANSHIP 2006-2014
Youth who are permanent wards of a CFS agency can receive financial support beyond their 18th birthday and up to the age of 21 under certain circumstances.The key goal is to facilitate a successful transition from being a youth in CFS care to independence.
Providing Supports beyond Termination of Guardianship can occur for a variety of reasons, including assisting youth to establish stable social support networks, participate in learning opportunities, complete post-secondary courses and/or plan for employment readiness.
The graphics below show:
A graph showing 71 youth receiving Supports beyond Termination of Guardianship in 2006 to 542 in 2014 – an increase of 663%.
A pie chart following the graph shows the number of youth receiving Supports beyond Termination of Guardianship as of March 31, 2014, by Authority.
Children in care are placed in various situations, depending on their individual needs and the availability of care resources.Three broad categories of care placements are Places of Safety, Licensed Foster Care Homes and Residential Care Facilities.
Places of Safety are child-specific homes most often provided by extended family or other community residents who come forward to look after a child in their community who needs care.
Licensed Foster Care Homes are licensed by mandated CFS agencies, and generally provide longer-term care.
The Residential Services – Children’s Program provides specialized treatment services for children with high needs who are in the care of CFS.
The graph below shows the increase in placement resources from 7,896 bed spaces as of March 31, 2006 to 12,786 as of March 31, 2014.
The Hotel Reduction Team (HRT) includes departmental and Authority representatives to address the high number of hotel placements. Challenges resulting in an over-reliance on hotel resources are complex and include an overall increase in the number of children requiring emergency placement, including:
supports provided beyond the termination of guardianship;
youth whose high or complex needs prevent them from being placed with other children; and
sibling groups who are placed in hotels in order to keep them together.
Manitoba has made a commitment to eliminate use of hotels as a placement option for children and youth in care. We met that target in the city of Winnipeg June 1, 2015 and continue to work diligently to meet that same target in rural and northern Manitoba by December 1, 2015.
HRT members are assisting agencies to access existing placement resources and develop additional emergency and specialized placement resources to ensure our ongoing commitment to permanently prohibit hotel usage as a placement option for our children in care.