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Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Saskatchewan

CHILDREN'S ADVOCATE TO CONDUCT INVESTIGATION

Dr. Deborah Parker-Loewen, Children's Advocate will conduct an

investigation into the treatment of a 17 year-old youth, who had been

held at a remand facility in Saskatoon. The investigation announced

today will also examine the existing policies and practices that led

to an incident which occurred in January 1999.



The incident involved a youth who had been placed in an isolation cill

and had been physically restrained by facility staff. As a result of

the events which followed, the youth was charged with allegedly

assaulting a facility staff person and uttering threats.



On April 15, 1999, Provincial Court Judge Mary-Ellen Turpel-Lafond

released her judgement on the two charges. Her judgement specifically

made reference to the role of the Children's Advocate. Her judgement

stated, "I would encourage the Crown, and in particular the Department

of Social Services, to immediately review the propriety and observance

of current policies on isolation cells, restraint policies and use of

police cells. This situation should also be brought to the attention

of the Saskatchewan Children's Advocate (Paragraph 106)."



As a result of the Judge's reference to the Children's Advocate

and with the permission of the youth involved, the Children's

Advocate decision to investigate this matter is being made

public. In announcing the investigation, Dr. Parker-Loewen

stated, "The issues identified in this case, the use of

restraints, police cells and isolation cells, have been concerns

of the my Office for some time. These issues were raised in my

1996 and 1997 Annual Reports and have been previously brought to

the attention of the Department of Social Services by my Office."



The investigation is being conducted under the authority of The

Ombudsman and Children's Advocate Act. Upon completion of the

investigation and in accordance with the Act, the Children's

Advocate will report any findings and recommendations to the

Minister of Social Services.



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For information, contact:



Sharon Chapman

communications and Public Education coordinator

Saskatoon

Phone: (306) 933-6706

Fax: (306) 933-8406
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