Victoria, BC: The Representative for Children and Youth
In June 2014, the Representative for Children and Youth issued a report entitled Finding Forever Families: A Review of the Provincial Adoption System. The report showed that, at any given time, more than 1,000 British Columbia children and youth in the care of the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) were waiting to be adopted.
During the release of the report, a joint event between Representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond and Minister of Children and Family Development Stephanie Cadieux, the Representative committed to issuing periodic updates on the status of B.C.’s waiting children. This is the third of those updates.
On April 17, 2015, the ministry committed to achieving 600 adoptions over the two-year period2014/15 to 2015/16. This update shows that, during the first eight months of fiscal year 2015/16, a total of 177 children and youth in care of the B.C. government have been adopted. Added to last year’s total of 274 adoptions, it remains to be seen whether this progress is on pace to fulfill the ministry’s stated goal.
As Aboriginal children are vastly over-represented in government care in B.C, a focus has been placed on collecting adoption and permanency statistics for that cohort. A total of 69 Aboriginal children and youth in care were placed for adoption between April 1 and Nov. 30, 2015, and the number of Aboriginal children in care with adoption plans has grown by 31. In addition, the number of available Aboriginal adoptive homes in B.C. rose from 44 to 56.