October 8, 2015
Minister of Children and Families Stephanie Cadieux expressed sadness at the suicide of teenager Carly Fraser, struggling with mental illness and addiction, who killed herself when the provincial government cast her upon her own resources four days before Christmas last year.
Then the minister declined a review, washing her hands of the matter, presumably because the dead teen ceased to be a provincial ward only hours before she jumped from Lions Gate Bridge. In bureaucratic terms, everything was reassuringly in accordance with policy by which provincial interest in its wards ends the minute they turn 19. Except that once again a young life full of promise and possibilities has ended prematurely.
In fairness, these are complex cases and following The Vancouver Sun’s investigative series on “aging-out” last year, which earned a Michener Award nomination, government did make some modest contributions to support teens transitioning from foster care. CBC reports Cadieux saying she is now less concerned about extending foster care and more concerned about changing outcomes for children.
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