Thornthwaite reintroduces Safe Care Act

MLA Jane Thornthwaite in Victoria May 17, 2018. Photography by John Lehmann

VICTORIA (February 28, 2018) – BC Liberal mental health and addictions critic Jane Thornthwaite reintroduced the Safe Care Act to the Legislature today.

If passed, the Safe Care Act will protect vulnerable children and youth and help quickly find safe placement for them if they are in immediate harm.

“This important piece of legislation will not only help at-risk youth, but their families as well,” says Thornthwaite. “This act will help young people find safe spaces so they can recover from substance abuse, sexual or domestic violence, or mental health issues.”

The Safe Care Act will be used as a court-mandated action to protect children in very worst-case scenarios. Jo-Anne Landolt and Linda Proctor have been working tirelessly to see legislation like this introduced since the death of their granddaughter and niece Kimberly.

“This legislation will fill a gap in our child-care services,” said Jo-Anne Landolt. “We hope this bill is passed so no family ever has to go through what we did.”

Brenda Doherty, whose daughter tragically died of an overdose a few short weeks ago, spoke of the need for this legislation. “My daughter was released prematurely from the hospital and overdosed a day and a half later. If there had been legislation like the Safe Care Act in place, her death could have been avoided.”

While at-risk youth in our society come from all backgrounds, Indigenous children are disproportionately represented in the child-care system. The Safe Care Act has specific protections that will ensure that members of Indigenous communities are actively involved in care plans that impact First Nations children.

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