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FREDERICTON - The Union representing over 600 Social Workers in New Brunswick is calling on Premier Bernard Lord to take the lead and finally implement all the recommendations of the Children Come First report released in 2000.

In the Speech from the Throne, the Government made a reference to a new child protection service delivery model. If the Premier is really concerned about enhancing the protection of child victims of abuse and neglect, he should act now and implement the measures that were recommended 5 years ago. These recommendations would ensure adequate services for the children and their families ”, said Anne Hogan, President of CUPE Local 1418.

For years now, we have been asking the government to invest in the future of this province and hire the additional workers needed to provide the services these children and their families need.”

We have raised our concerns with the government officials on many occasions. We have requested several times a meeting with the former minister Tony Huntjens to discuss the workload issue without success, and his successor Joan McAlpine-Stiles has not responded to our request for a meeting.”

We are very concerned that after the tragic incidents that prompted the government to commission a study pertaining to child welfare issues in the province they did not implement most of the recommendations.“

Since the introduction of the NB Families Computer System, Social Workers have been doing more administrative work and less social work. Social Workers now spend an additional 6 hours per week doing computer data entry so resources can be paid - this is time that should be spent with families and children that need help in this province”.

The Children Come First report recommended that the government hire an additional 177 Social Workers including 143 for the child protection. Since the publication of the report, the government only created 73 new positions.

For more information:

Anne Hogan
President CUPE 1418
(506) 850-1753

Mario Bourgoin
(506) 753-6600