Hotel placements continue for B.C. children in care

Exceptional circumstances cited by children's ministry in each of 24 recent cases

Super 8 Hotel in Abbotsford where 18-year-old Alex Gervais died last year.

A new report shows 24 children and youth in government care were placed in hotels in the three and a half months up until the end of April.

The Ministry of Children and Family Development has been under pressure to minimize the practice but says hotels sometimes must be used when there’s no other suitable option.

Most of the children placed in hotels this year stayed only a day or two.

In each case, a qualified contracted caregiver, ministry social worker or foster parent was staying with the child, and each placement was approved locally and reported to the provincial director of child welfare.

One pair of siblings were in a hotel for 18 nights because the relatives they were placed with were staying in the hotel while waiting to take possession of the new home they’d bought.

Other reasons for hotel placements included a fire at a foster home, emergency removal from a remote home where no other local foster home was available, and a bad weather delay of foster parents’ flight to pick up their foster kids.

In a few other cases threats to safety were cited for urgent use of hotels.

Seven children were placed in hotels in northwestern B.C. during the period, as well as another seven in the Vancouver-Richmond area and four in the South Fraser area.

Hotel placements have been high profile and have drawn heavy fire from the Representative for Children and Youth.

The focus intensified after 18-year-old Alex Gervais fell or jumped to his death last fall from the fourth floor of an Abbotsford hotel, where he’d been housed after his group home was shut down due to poor conditions.

The release of statistics every six months is part of the ministry’s commitment to better transparency on the issue.

Just Posted

Cook serves up the icing on the cake for Prince Rupert

Triumphant home return for Josh Cook as Rampage roll River Kings on Hometown Hockey weekend

EXCLUSIVE: Slone on Prince Rupert, working with MacLean and women in sports

Tara Slone, host of Rogers Hometown Hockey, sat down with reporter Alex Kurial for an interview

EXCLUSIVE: Kirk McLean on first time in Prince Rupert, changing nature of goaltending and Canucks outlook

Alex Kurial caught up with legendary Vancouver Canucks goaltender at Rogers Hometown Hockey

Adverse weather conditions lead to pair of ferry cancellations

Northern Expedition sailings from Prince Rupert and Skidegate affected

EXCLUSIVE | Ron MacLean on Prince Rupert: “A kaleidoscope for the eyes”

Rogers Hometown Hockey host on Canucks, B.C.’s First Nations story and hockey’s new reflection phase

WEB POLL: Is hockey part of your identity as a Canadian?

Prince Rupert is Hometown Hockey! Is the sport part of your national identity?

The Northern View presents Santa Shops Here in Prince Rupert

More reasons to spend your shopping dollars locally

B.C. cities top the list for most generous in Canada on GoFundMe

Chilliwack took the number-two spot while Kamloops was at the top of the list

Penticton RCMP warn of new ‘porting’ scam that puts internet banking, online accounts at risk

Two-factor verification has been the go-to way to keep online accounts secure

Thunberg ‘a bit surprised’ to be Time ‘Person of the Year’

‘I could never have imagined anything like that happening,’ she said in a phone interview

B.C. patients wait 41% longer than national average to see a walk-in doctor: Medimap

The longest wait time was found in Sidney, B.C., where patients waited an average of 180 minutes

Toronto Raptors, Don Cherry top the list of Canadians’ Google searches in 2019

‘Champions’ was the theme of the last year, Google said

Tavares scores twice as Maple Leafs earn 4-1 win over Canucks

Vancouver sees two-game win streak snapped

Most Read