CFS: Communication breakdown

TCNA Winnipeg man, 40, gets pinched for luring a child on the internet in a covert sting.

The “girl” on the other end of his explicit and concerning Yahoo.com chats is actually an undercover cop.

The Winnipeg police investigation starts in June 2010 and ends with his arrest two months later, on Aug. 24. His computers are seized.

But police then learn he and his wife are CFS foster parents.

“At the time of (his) arrest, the family was fostering high needs medical babies through Southeast Child and Family Services,” a Manitoba Corrections report on the case states.

Police call up Winnipeg CFS and apprise them of the situation. The agency tells the offender to move out of the home. He does.

His wife stops fostering kids that same year, the report says.

But fast forward to April 2013, when the man is now suddenly allowed (the report’s wording) move back into the home despite having pleaded guilty and taken no programming or sex-offender treatment in the intervening years.

It wouldn’t be until a curious probation officer interviewing him for a pre-sentencing report that it comes to light his wife has again started fostering kids.

“Further enquiries resulted in the information that (the wife) was again fostering children through two different Aboriginal Child and Family Services Agencies; Island Lake First Nations Family Services and Kinosao Sipi Minisowin Agency out of Norway House. Both these agencies were reportedly unaware (the offender) had returned to reside with the family.” [this last sentence is underlined in the report]

Manitoba Corrections notifies Winnipeg CFS of this and this agency steps in again.

“(The wife) was asked to have (the offender) move out of the home until such time Child and Family Services grants permission for him to have access to the children, likely after having completed treatment,” the report reads. 

The report was compiled on June 7, 2013.

Also of concern is how the offender didn’t initially disclose who was living in the family home around the time the inquisitive Corrections officer was interviewing him for the report.

“It should be noted, when the writer asked (him) who lived with him in the home he omitted to inform they had foster children in their care and living at the home.”

Look. Nothing actually happened here to any child that I’ve been made aware of. That’s a relief. But that’s not the point.

This makes clear there’s obviously key inter-agency communication gaps within CFS that have to be addressed.

How can Winnipeg CFS order a man out of an (obviously registered) foster home due to a child-related sexual offence in 2010 only to have the other agencies — within the same CFS system, remember — somehow place kids back there at some point prior to April 2013 and somehow not know the offender was being allowed back to live there? Untreated, no less.

Who authorized his return? One can only assume it had to be CFS, as they were the ones who wanted him out [rightly] in the first place.

It’s conjecture to some degree, but it looks like from the documentation I’ve seen that possibly Winnipeg CFS gave him the OK to return without visiting the home to check it out (he has kids of his own). And somehow the northern agencies didn’t know or weren’t apprised of this development, his return.

And it also appears as if the northern agencies didn’t communicate to anyone (child protection branch, Winnipeg CFS?) the fact they were placing foster kids with the wife again.

Was the file not red-flagged? I have no explanation for how this happened.

But the better question is —  Does CFS?

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