MYS' CEO Responds to Winnipeg Free Press Article

On Tuesday, September 30, 2014 there was an article in the Winnipeg Free Press called "Workers lack needed skills" by Mary Agnes Welch. The article was about for-profit companies caring for children in care in hotels, group homes and shelters. The article stated the reasons why youth end up in emergency placements which included that youth can be "kicked out of group homes run by Macdonald Youth Services".

Erma Chapman, CEO of MYS wrote a Letter to the Editor of the Winnipeg Free Press clarifying that this information is not accurate. The letter was published on October 2, 2014 and provides insight into our services and demonstrates our commitment to helping youth-at-risk reach their full potential. Please read Erma Chapman's response below.

Clarifying youth agency stance

Re: Workers lack needed skills (Sept. 30). As part of an article in which a former staff person of another service provider was interviewed, it was stated that youth can be "kicked out of group homes run by Macdonald Youth Services."

I can assure you that this is not true. What may be the case, however, was that the person interviewed was encountering youth who had been part of Macdonald Youth Services' emergency shelter. As a time-limited (three-night) stop-gap for many youth and their Child and Family Services social workers, it is very possible that the next step would be the province's Emergency Placement Resources (EPR) system.

Unfortunately, we work in a system that is under-resourced, both at the EPR level and within the longer-care system. I can assure you that in spite of the limitations and challenges, MYS staff members do their very best every day to help youth at risk. Giving up on kids is simply not an option for us -- or for the kids.

Erma Chapman
Chief Executive Officer, Macdonald Youth Services