Services to Children in Need of Protection

Performance Indicators

A response to a Child Protection report may include a Family Development Response (FDR), an investigation, a Youth Service Response, or a non-protective response such as offer of support services or referral to community agency. Over the past several years MCFD has increasingly focused on using FDR by working in collaboration with families to address child protection concerns and using investigations for situations when evidence is required to determine if a child needs protection. This report presents data and outcome indicators that support the appropriate use of FDR as an alternative to investigation.


4.00 Family Preservation Rates

Rationale

Evidence has shown that children and youth have far better social, health, education, and economic outcomes when they live safely with a family – a parent, family member or extended family, or in a home with permanent caregivers – than they do in government care. The strategic direction of the ministry is to invest in supports to help preserve families, while continuing to ensure the safety of children and youth.

Rate of Family Preservation1
Children and Youth in Need of Protection
As at March 31, 2022
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1 "-" Indicates no counts of children.

The percentage of Family Preservation shows the percentage of children who were not admitted into care within 12 months of Investigations and FDR. The March 2022 Family Preservation rate is based on children who had closed Investigations and FDR between April 2020 and March 2021.

There is a gap between Indigenous Family Preservation and Non-Indigenous Family Preservation. In March 2022, the Indigenous Family Preservation rate is 5 percentage points lower than the Non-Indigenous Family Preservation rate in the province. This gap has shrunk from 6.4% in March 2021 to 5% in March 2022. The ministry strives to improve Indigenous Family Preservation and reduce the over-representation of Indigenous children in the child welfare system.


4.16 Relative Use of Admissions into Care and Admissions to Out-of-Care (OCO)

Rationale

When appropriate, OCOs are a best practice. The well-being of children and youth is, overall, better when children and youth can continue to live with their extended families. Sometimes children and youth can be placed in OCO options as a substitute for admission into Care.

OCO includes the following agreements and court orders:

  • Extended Family Program Agreements

  • Interim Custody with Other under Director’s Supervision – s. 35(2)(d)

  • Interim Custody with Other under Director’s Supervision – s. 35(2)(d) – Consent

  • Temporary Custody with Other under Director’s Supervision – s. 41(1)(b), 42.2(4)(c), 49(7)(b), 54.01(9)(b)

  • Temporary Custody with Other under Director’s Supervision – s. 41(1)(b), 42.2(4)(c), 49(7)(b), 54.01(9)(b) – Consent

  • Extension to Temporary Custody with Other under Director’s Supervision – s. 44(3)(b)

  • and Extension to Temporary Custody with Other under Director’s Supervision – s. 44(3)(b) - Consent.

Relative Use of Admissions into Care and Admissions to OCO1
As at March 31, 2022
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1 "-" Indicates no counts of children.

Since September 2014, this performance indicator increased significantly from 389 to 533 in November 2015, followed by a decline to 458 in December 2017. The trend reverted since early 2018, to reach 895 OCO Placements per 1,000 Admissions into In Care Placements in March 2022. The overall upward trend in this indicator is largely attributed to a significant drop in the number of Non-Indigenous children being admitted into Care and a relatively stable number of Non-Indigenous children being admitted into OCO over time (based on a rolling twelve-month period).

OCO per 1,000 In Care Placements
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For the province and the majority of SDAs, there was relatively greater use of OCO options for Indigenous children than for Non-Indigenous children in March 2022. The Admissions into OCO Placements per 1,000 Admissions into In Care Placements ranged from 444 in East Fraser SDA to a high of 1648 in Northwest SDA, with the provincial average of 895 in March 2022.

Currently, a protection report is least likely to become an admission into Care in Kootenays SDA (probability 2.4%), and most likely in Northeast SDA (9.7%). Northwest SDA (9.9%) is more likely to utilize admissions into OCO as a response to a protection report than any other SDA, while North Fraser SDA (1.8%) is the least likely to utilize an OCO admission as a response to a protection report.