Islanders invited to share their thoughts on independent Child and Youth Advocate Office
Hearing from Islanders is the next step to establishing an independent Child and Youth Advocate Office that will assure the promotion and protection of the rights and views of Island children and youth.
In July, a draft of the Child and Youth Advocate Act was prepared with intent to establish the Office of the Child and Youth Advocate as independent from government and reporting to the PEI Legislative Assembly. All three party leaders and house leaders were then briefed on the draft legislation. Recognizing its significance to Island children and families, all three leaders have committed their full support to moving this important file forward with public consultation before Government introduces the Child and Youth Advocate Act during the upcoming fall sitting of the Legislative Assembly.
Beginning September 9, Islanders are invited to share their thoughts on the Child and Youth Advocate Office in person at one of several public consultation sessions being held across the province or online through the province’s website.
Consultations with public and private sector professionals, organizations and community groups serving children, youth and families have been ongoing since mid-August.
“Before we can introduce meaningful legislation establishing the independence of the Child and Youth Advocate Office it is critical that we hear from those who work with and support our children and youth every day. We also need to hear from Islanders – families and community members. This is an important piece of work that will impact the next generation of Islanders and their families. We must get this right the first time.”
- Honourable Dennis King, Premier of Prince Edward Island
"I have always believed that PEI needs an independent Child and Youth Advocate. I am thrilled that government has made this a priority and is committed to undertaking meaningful public consultation. My caucus and I look forward to working with government and all Islanders to ensure the needs of children and youth are protected by strong independent oversight."
- Peter Bevan-Baker, Leader of the Official Opposition
"I certainly expect many Islanders will have valuable and constructive input as we take the next step in creating an office for child advocacy. By listening to Islanders – and taking their advice seriously – I believe we can ensure that modern and creative approaches can be adopted."
- Robert Mitchell, Leader of the Third Party
Executive Director, Communications and Public Affairs
The intent of the proposed Child and Youth Advocate Act is to:
- Be consistent with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child;
- Recognize that formative childhood experiences have long-term implications for the individual and for society;
- Recognize that when provided with positive life experiences that encourage healthy development and early support when facing challenges, children and youth are able to reach their highest potential;
- Recognize the importance of continual improvement in the provision of programs and services to children and youth through a collaborative approach inclusive of the views of children and youth;
- Recognize the importance of the preservation and promotion of cultural identity for Indigenous children and youth; and,
- Commit the government of Prince Edward Island to ensuring the rights and viewpoints of children and youth are considered in matters affecting them.
Public consultation sessions have been scheduled as follows:
|Monday, September 9
6pm - 8PM
|O’Leary||Hernewood Intermediate School|
|Tuesday, September 10
6pm - 8PM
|Summerside||Athena Consolidated School|
|Wednesday, September 11
6pm - 8PM
|Charlottetown||Birchwood Intermediate School|
|Monday, September 23
6pm - 8PM
|Montague||Montague Regional High School|
|Tuesday, September 24
6pm - 8PM