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O. Reg. 208/20: GENERAL MATTERS UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF THE MINISTER

filed May 8, 2020 under Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2017, S.O. 2017, c. 14, Sched. 1

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ontario regulation 208/20

made under the

Child, Youth and Family Services Act, 2017

Made: May 6, 2020
Filed: May 8, 2020
Published on e-Laws: May 11, 2020
Printed in The Ontario Gazette: May 23, 2020

Amending O. Reg. 156/18

(GENERAL MATTERS UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF THE MINISTER)

1. Ontario Regulation 156/18 is amended by adding the following sections:

Alternative Procedures Due to the Emergency for Societies

Definitions

52.1 In sections 52.2 to 52.5,

“emergency” means the emergency declared by the Lieutenant Governor in Council on March 17, 2020 under section 7.0.1 of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act in the whole of the Province of Ontario as a result of the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19); (“situation d’urgence”)

“public health guidance on physical distancing” means any advice, recommendations and instructions of public health officials on physical distancing;(“orientations en matière de santé publique concernant la distanciation physique”)

“society child welfare service supervisor” means an employee of a society who has the qualifications referred to in subsection 18 (1). (“superviseur d’un service de bien-être de l’enfance d’une société”)

Home visits and in-person interviews

52.2 (1) Despite the requirements in clauses 46 (1) (a) to (c) and subsection 46 (5) to conduct home visits and in-person interviews and the requirement in section 51 to visit children placed in a foster or other home, the requirements in those sections for home visits or in-person interviews may be deviated from if a society considers it appropriate to do so after having considered,

(a)  the feasibility of a home visit or in-person interview being conducted in a way that is consistent with the most recent public health guidance on physical distancing; and

(b)  whether any risk to the safety and well-being of a child can be adequately assessed through other means and mitigated by taking additional steps, such as more frequent contact with the child and the person with whom a child is placed by telephone or other means or through visits conducted in the community.

(2) In determining whether to deviate from the requirements referred to in subsection (1), the society shall consult with the person who would otherwise conduct the home visits and in-person interviews, if that person is not an employee of the society.

(3) Any deviation from the requirements referred to in subsection (1) must be approved by a society child welfare service supervisor.

(4) If any of the requirements referred to in subsection (1) are deviated from under this section, the society that placed the child shall ensure that a home visit or in-person interview or both, as the case may be, is conducted as soon as reasonably possible after the society determines that it can be conducted, taking into account the most recent public health guidance on physical distancing.

Examinations and treatment, medical, etc.

52.3 (1) Where a non-urgent examination, assessment or treatment of a child who is in the care of a society is required by subsection 49 (1), (2), (4) or (5) during the emergency and the examination, assessment or treatment requires that the child attend in-person, the examination, assessment or treatment may, if the in-person attendance of the child cannot be accommodated in the circumstances by the person providing the medical, dental, psychiatric or psychological services, be postponed until the next available time at which the examination or assessment can be conducted or the treatment performed.

(2) Any postponement of an examination, assessment or treatment under subsection (1) must be approved by a society child welfare service supervisor.

Records

52.4 The following information shall be documented where a society child welfare service supervisor approves a deviation from a requirement in this Regulation as authorized by section 52.2 or 52.3:

1.  The particular requirement in question, including when it is required to be met.

2.  The last time the requirement was met or any previous occasions on which the requirement was deviated from, if applicable.

3.  Any attempts made to meet the requirement, any rationale for deviating from the requirement and any alternative means to be used to assess and mitigate any risk to the safety and well-being of a child.

Adoption of additional measures

52.5 Where a society is exempt under section 31 of Ontario Regulation 155/18 (General Matters under the Authority of the Lieutenant Governor in Council) made under the Act for more than 60 days from the requirement for a licence under section 244 of the Act in respect of the provision of residential care in a person’s home, the society shall,

(a)  document whether any licensing requirements that would be applicable once the setting is licensed are not met, either in whole or in part, as of 60 days following the placement and the reasons for which those requirements cannot be met; and

(b)  adopt other measures that the society considers appropriate to ensure the health, safety and welfare of any children receiving residential care in the home.

2. The Regulation is amended by adding the following sections:

Alternative Procedures Due to the Emergency for Licensees Providing Residential Care

Definitions

141.1 (1) In sections 141.2 to 141.8,

“emergency” means the emergency declared by the Lieutenant Governor in Council on March 17, 2020 under section 7.0.1 of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act in the whole of the Province of Ontario as a result of the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19); (“situation d’urgence”)

“public health guidance” means any advice, recommendations and instructions of public health officials respecting the coronavirus (COVID-19), including any advice, recommendations or instructions on physical distancing, cleaning or disinfecting;(“orientations en matière de santé publique”)

(2) The definitions set out in section 78 also apply in sections 141.2 to 141.8.

Supervision and support of foster homes

141.2 (1) Despite the requirements in subsections 122 (3) and (4) for a person assigned by a foster care licensee to consult with foster parents in the foster home and to visit the foster home, those requirements may be deviated from until the emergency is terminated if a foster care licensee considers it appropriate to do so after having considered,

(a)  the feasibility of conducting the consultation in the foster home or visiting the foster home in a way that is consistent with the most recent public health guidance; and

(b)  whether the foster parents can be adequately supported and supervised through other means.

(2) If any of the requirements referred to in subsection (1) are deviated from under this section, the foster care licensee shall ensure that a consultation is conducted in the home with the foster parents and that the person assigned by the foster care licensee visits the foster home as soon as reasonably possible after the licensee determines that the consultation or visit can be conducted in the home, taking into account the most recent public health guidance.

Foster home reviews

141.3 (1) Despite the requirements in clauses 123 (3) (a) and (e) to visit a foster home and conduct interviews with foster parents in the foster home, those requirements may be deviated from until the emergency is terminated if a foster care licensee considers it appropriate to do so after having considered,

(a)  the feasibility of visiting the foster home in a way that is consistent with the most recent public health guidance; and

(b)  whether the review can be adequately conducted through other means.

(2) Without limiting the generality of clause (1) (b), the licensee or a person designated by the licensee shall conduct the required interviews over the phone or using other communications technology.

(3) If any of the requirements referred to in subsection (1) are deviated from under this section, the foster care licensee or a person designated by the licensee shall visit the foster home in order to conduct the interviews required by clause 123 (3) (a) and in order to make the determination referred to in clause 123 (3) (e) as soon as reasonably possible after the licensee determines that these steps can be taken, taking into account the most recent public health guidance.

Records

141.4 The following information shall be documented by a foster care licensee that deviates from a requirement in this Regulation under section 141.2 or 141.3:

1.  The particular requirement in question, including when it is required to be met.

2.  The last time the requirement was met or any previous occasions on which the requirement was deviated from, if applicable.

3.  Any attempts made to meet the requirement, the rationale for deviating from the requirement and any alternative means used to supervise and support foster parents or conduct annual reviews of the foster parents and foster home, as the case may be.

4.  The moment at which the particular requirement is subsequently complied with without deviation.

Maximum number of foster children

141.5 (1) Despite paragraph 1 of subsection 125 (1), until the emergency is terminated, a foster care licensee may place a child in a foster home even if four foster children are receiving foster care in the foster home at the time of placement if,

(a)  the foster care licensee and the placing agency or other person placing the child have both determined that,

(i)  there is no alternative placement available as a result of the circumstances giving rise to the emergency, and

(ii)  the proposed placement would not pose a risk to the health, safety and welfare of the child and any other children receiving foster care in the foster home;

(b)  the foster care licensee has indicated to the Director that there is no alternative placement available for the child as a result of the circumstances giving rise to the emergency and provided to the Director documentation that the licensee and the placing agency or other person placing the child have made the determination referred to in clause (a); and

(c)  the Director has provided the foster care licensee with written approval of the placement.

(2) Once the emergency is terminated, a foster care licensee that placed a child in a foster home as authorized by subsection (1) shall make reasonable efforts to reduce the number of children receiving foster care in the foster home such that the rules set out in section 125 respecting the number of children receiving foster care in a foster home are complied with.

(3) A foster care licensee required to make reasonable efforts to reduce the number of children receiving foster care in a foster home under subsection (2) shall notify the Director once the number of children in the foster home has been reduced so as to comply with the rules set out in section 125.

(4) If the foster care licensee is unable to reduce the number of children on or before the 30th day after the emergency is terminated, the licensee shall, on that day, notify the Director of the licensee’s efforts to do so.

Annual review of policies and procedures

141.6 (1) Until the emergency is terminated, a licensee is not required to comply with clause 83 (1) (b) or subsection 120 (3) in respect of an annual review of the policies and procedures of a children’s residence by an employee or the provision of an annual orientation respecting policies and procedures to a person assigned to supervise or support a foster parent, as the case may be, if the licensee determines that it is not feasible to do so due to the circumstances giving rise to the emergency, in which case the licensee shall,

(a)  document the reasons for which the licensee was unable to comply with the requirement in question, the name of the employee or person assigned to supervise or support a foster parent, as the case may be, and the date by which the employee or person should have reviewed the policies and procedures or been provided with the annual orientation; and

(b)  ensure that, within three months after that date, the policies and procedures are reviewed by the employee or the annual orientation is provided to the person assigned to supervise or support a foster parent, as the case may be.

(2) For greater certainty, subsection (1) only applies in respect of the annual orientation referred to in subsection 120 (3) and a person assigned by the licensee to supervise or support the foster parent or parents is still required to receive the orientation before beginning to supervise or support the foster parent or parents.

Medical documentation

141.7 If a licensee is unable to obtain documentation that a person employed in the residence has received the immunizations and health assessment required by section 100 or is unable to obtain any of the written statements required by clause 121 (2) (e) or 123 (3) (c) due to the circumstances giving rise to the emergency, the licensee is not required to obtain them when otherwise required by this Regulation, but the licensee shall,

(a)  adopt other measures that ensure the health, safety and welfare of children or young persons receiving residential care; and

(b)  obtain the documentation or written statements, as the case may be, as soon as reasonably possible in the circumstances, taking into account the most recent public health guidance.

Foster care service agreement

141.8 Until the emergency is terminated, a licensee is not required to review a foster care service agreement at least once in every year as required by subsection 131 (3) if the licensee is unable to do so due to the circumstances giving rise to the emergency, but the licensee shall,

(a)  document the reasons for which the licensee was unable to review the foster care service agreement and the date by which the licensee should have reviewed the agreement; and

(b)  ensure that the foster care service agreement is reviewed no later than three months after it was required to be reviewed.

Commencement

3. This Regulation comes into force on the day it is filed.

Made by:
Pris par :

Le ministre des Services à l'enfance et des Services sociaux et communautaires,

Todd Smith

Minister of Children, Community and Social Services

 

Date made: May 6, 2020
Pris le : 6 mai 2020

 

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