Yukon’s group homes will be undergoing a systemic review to determine whether children and youth are getting the support they need.
Annette King, the Yukon’s child advocate is assessing the systemic issues plaguing the territory’s six group homes.
“We have many advocacy issues for children who live in group homes,” she says. “I think probably every group home is represented in our office in some way or form the advocacy issues are not simple.”
King says the systemic issues include mental health, education and the overrepresentation of Indigenous kids in the child welfare system.
Kara Sweeney, who spent six months in a group home during her teen years, says the review is needed. She suggests the government make the group home environment more like a home and not a business.
“These kids needs to feel safe or they won’t know stability for the rest of their lives,” she says.
The advocate will collect information by speaking to kids in care and their families, reviewing old case files and speaking with group home workers.
There is no date as to when the review will be finished and the recommendations presented to Yukon government.