if a single child has died because of the failure of the Tories I believe this is a criminal matter and the government should be investigated by the police why should the family be taken to court and not the government that deceives us?
I took my Power in my Hand – / And went against the World – Emily Dickinson (Poem 660)
have you made a war out of your heart?
have you learned your lessons as well as you could have?
have you poured yourself out entirely and made not a drop
of your soul an acid throw? have you given your mask away
a dozen times and shown yourself naked to the beloved? and if not
why not? the world aches for this sort of courage and you have failed
if you have not done any of these works
have you grown a garden of words and laid the root cellar full of your harvest?
have you gone out into the world and faced each lie with your sword and cut down
as much of that thicket down? have you made a war out of your heart? have you taken
down all those who would harm the ones who are powerless? have you been shield and cry?
have you done the good work? and if not why not? why have you not spoken up and given your blood
for the cause which is the cause of all of mankind? why have you not laid your life on the line?
the line of poetry the line of language the line of acts of courage?
why have you stayed silent while the homeless walked by your home?
why have you not spoken for the hungry? why have you kept quiet when we have been lied to?
why have you not taken out your soul from its burial ground and given it up in life to do the work
of love? I ask you this not to make you ashamed or restless I ask you this because I am curious
how can you let your children live and yet keep silent when their children die?
how can you do this?
Saturday, December 7, 2013
if a single child has died————–Opposition members insist only a full public inquiry will get to the bottom of what went wrong.——The system is broken —so fix it and start with a public inquiry into this horror.-
the children stare
the people are silent
even though they have died
even though the graveyard is full
and they have given their lives so that
we might see
even though the cases show
the abuse and neglect
even though the children are ghosts
we will not set them free
we do not ask for answers from them
is this because we do not care for our children?
why do we stay silent
while a genocide proceeds?
why do we allow the contracts be signed
for future humiliations?
why do the people of Alberta
say nothing about the children who have died?
and why do the Tories not answer the mummies?
is it because the law suits are ongoing?
will we have to wait for the court system to reveal the stories?
if negligence was the reason these children died
who will pay for the civil and criminal costs?
who has the ultimate responsibility for
these deficiencies in governance?
will we learn from our mistakes in hiring them?
will we elect a new party to govern the people?
or will we turn away from the crimes
committed and say that these were only
aboriginal children? will racism triumph?
who will say that the government of Alberta
must open up the case histories and tell the people
who will ask for justice for the (741) dead children?
if these children died in vain
without investigation by the police
then what does this say about you and I?
are we the people we thought we were?
or are we simply
the buyers and sellers of souls?
is this what we are to be known by?
and here are the words of our government
they will have a round table conference
to explain themselves
but what explanation will they give us for
(741) dead children?
will the knights of the round table
give us the reasons for the war against our children?
or we to understand that money and power corrupts?
that the people we hired to protect the children
instead were responsible for their deaths?
if a single child has died
because of the failure of the Tories
this is a criminal matter
and the government should be investigated by the police
why should the family be taken to court and not the government that deceives us?
why should the government be exempt from investigation
for the failures to protect
the most vulnerable citizens?
November 27, 2013 4:28 pm
Alberta to review how it investigates, reports foster child deaths
By Emily Mertz Global News
EDMONTON – Human Services Minister Dave Hancock said a public review of the foster care system will include how the deaths of foster children are investigated and reported.
“I’ll push for a full, open discussion among the people in the system and others – so parents can give us their views on it,” said Hancock. “This is not an easy question; this is a very important question.”
He said everyone in the system wants to make sure they’re doing everything they can to keep kids safe.
“Over the past few days, a number of our community partners and staff have been in touch with my department to share their concerns about the negative image of frontline staff, caregivers and the child intervention system as a whole that is being portrayed as a result of the stories in the media and the discussions that are happening.”
On Monday, a joint investigative series on foster care deaths in Alberta by the Edmonton Journal and the Calgary Herald was published. The series took more than four years to research and complete.
The investigation found 145 children have died in government care since 1999. The government has only publicized 56 deaths over that period.
“I’ve been receiving many, many emails and letters from foster parents and kinship care parents who are really affected by this media that’s been happening regarding the deaths of children in care,” said Katherine Jones of the Alberta Foster Parent Association, who was also part of Wednesday’s news conference.
“We all are aware that children die in care. It is heartbreaking for everybody when that happens,” she said. “We also understand that there are things in the child welfare system that need to be improved on and we have seen a lot of work being done in that area.”
“The people that work in this field are dedicated – committed – to keeping children safe and to improving the lives of the children and families that we serve,” added Bruce Armson, with the Alberta Association of Services for Children and Families. “Unfortunately, that seems to have been overlooked at this time.”
(Above: Raw video of Wednesday’s news conference with Human Services Minister Dave Hancock)
Four-mouth-old Delonna Sullivan is shown in this family handout photo. An Edmonton judge has removed a publication ban on the identity of a four-month-old baby girl who died in foster care. Delonna Sullivan’s mother, Jamie Sullivan, says she went to court so she could tell the world what happened to her daughter. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HOAlberta minister responds to investigation on foster care deaths
Danielle Smith: Foster Care Deaths
Foster care deaths
“It’s not like the situation that you’ve seen now is news, to be honest,” said Hancock. “People who’ve worked in the system know that they’re dealing with… children in very difficult situations, they’re dealing with children who are medically fragile and come from tragic circumstances. People know that children die and that they die in care.”
Hancock went on to say the media coverage of the child intervention system has portrayed it “as one of despair,” but that it is also about hope.
“We need to say, ‘yes, we can always do better,’ and we need to say, ‘yes, there are tragedies’ because we are dealing with a very difficult and tragic population, but we also need to say ‘there’s hope.’ There’s a lot of good things happening, and there are a lot of good people doing it.”
Hancock reiterated his plan to form a roundtable with stakeholders, opposition members, and experts in children and youth services in the new year. That roundtable, he said, will come up with recommendations.
He also committed to reviewing Alberta’s Child Death Review system and the publication ban.
“What is the right balance of information to make sure we learn from every tragedy, we make sure families are treated properly and respectfully, and we protect the rights of all the others involved in the process?”
Opposition members insist only a full public inquiry will get to the bottom of what went wrong.
(Watch: Wildrose MLA and former Children’s Services Minister Heather Forsyth read her statement in the legislature Wednesday, urging the government to hold a public inquiry into the deaths of children in care.)
NDP Human Services critic Rachel Notley said she will ask members of the standing committee on legislative officers to support an NDP motion to give the Office of the Child and Youth Advocate further and immediate resources to investigate the deaths or serious injury of all children receiving government care.
The committee meets Friday.
Posted by Julie Ali at 8:17 AM