Commission Lawrence: “it should go better for the children”

Commission Laurent: «ça doit aller mieux pour les enfants»

Photo: Jean-François Nadeau Archives The Duty
Régine Laurent, president of the special Commission on the rights of children and the protection of the youth

It is not uncommon that an attorney who represents a child not meeting him, he has never talked to, and bases its action on the only folder that is under its eyes, ” says Mona Paré, vice-dean research at the Faculty of law of the University of Ottawa.

“The problem is more often a lack of time that attitudes towards the child” on the part of lawyers, ” she said on the occasion of his testimony before the special Committee on the rights of children and youth protection Commission (Laurent).

The work of this commission were taken over Wednesday by video-conference, despite a result of technical problems. The hearings had been arrested since the start of the pandemic. Public hearings scheduled to Saguenay and Gatineau and Rimouski have been cancelled, but the testimony of selected experts will be heard publicly in the next few days.

In Quebec, more than 12 000 children are represented each year by lawyers permanent legal aid. Paraphrasing the slogan of the fashion on social networks to counteract the effects démoralisateurs of the pandemic, the representatives of the Commission des services juridiques (CSJ), the body responsible for the enforcement of the law on legal aid, writes that “it must be better to go for the children” regarding protection of the youth.

In a state of emergency

In front of the Commission, Laurent, Me, Catherine Brousseau, director of the legal aid Office in Drummondville and Victoriaville, as well as Me Myriam Cantin, director of Québec recognize that children are all too often before the court, at a point where we must speak of a state of emergency. “The discussions become more heavy on the court” because it was waiting too long, ” says Catherine Brousseau. And the lawyer then arrives “in a state of emergency”, then he was barely fifteen minutes to meet with the child, she adds.

Before the commission, the lack of resources for children have often been highlighted. Needless to add, in this respect, says to Me, Cantin, before yet state that “this lack of resources has consequences on the justice system which is increasingly required, or saturated” with respect to children.

“The acute lack of resources to help in the first line and the vacuum of specialised services for certain special situations, and this, for years, has led to the development of the “reflex” to call on the DPJ to take the situation in hand.” However, this is due first to a lack of adequate resources upstream.

Communication tools

In its submission, the Association of doctors in child protection press to act in terms of communication and links between the various instances in the records of child victims of abuse.

She noted, for example, that the stakeholders of the DYP should finally have access to communication tools that are simple, such as cell phones, computers, dedicated emails and more institutional.

The doctors also believe that the time has come for that, “the clinical information necessary and relevant to the case of a child be made available, notwithstanding any confidentiality rules which are submitted to the stakeholders of the DYP.

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