Anyone with concerns about the services a child or young person is receiving or not receiving from the child and family services community can call our office. We respond to concerns raised about services that fall under The Child and Family Services Act and/or The Adoption Act.
Many concerned adults contact the Office of the Children’s Advocate. They include parents, foster parents, grandparents, teachers and day care providers. If an adult contacts us, we always ensure that we act in accordance with the wishes of the child or youth as he/she is the primary focus of our advocacy services.
What happens when you call?
An advocate will speak with you as quickly as possible. If an advocate is not immediately available, we will ask you to leave your name and number for a return call. Your call is confidential. No one will know you called our office unless you give us permission to tell the people involved.
What can the Office of the Children’s Advocate do for you?
- Listen to your concerns.
- Help you help a child by giving you information about how to solve his/her situation.
- Provide information about the child and family services and adoption system in Manitoba.
What the Office of the Children’s Advocate cannot do
- Make decisions regarding children in care.
- Intervene in private custody or access matters.
- Intervene in other matters outside of our mandate.
- Act as legal counsel for children.
- Provide child welfare services. We cannot respond to emergency situations where children may be at risk.
If you have a concern about the immediate safety of a child/youth, please notify your local Child and Family Services agency to report your concerns. In Winnipeg, call (204) 944-4200 or outside Winnipeg 1-888-834-9767 (toll-free).
Child and Family Services complaint review process
The first step for any adult concerned about a child receiving services from a Child and Family Services agency is to pursue the complaint process outlined in the Child and Family Services Standards Manual. The Child and Family Services office you are dealing with must provide you with details of this process.
If you need help with how best to advocate for yourself, the Office of the Children’s Advocate may be able to assist. If you have followed the complaint process and have received no response or an unsatisfactory one, there may also be a role for our office. Please call us.