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WHITEHORSE – The report from the Child and Youth Advocate Office (CYAO) reveals that the Minister of Education contravened the Child and Youth Advocate Act when she publicly questioned the authority of the Advocate. The report said ‘In refusing to cooperate with the review, the Department of Education was in contravention of the Child and Youth Advocate Act.’
In responding to a case of sexual abuse at a Yukon school, the Minister of Education told the Whitehorse Star in a newspaper article published on August 6, 2021, the Child and Youth Advocate had no authority to investigate.
The article quotes the Minister as saying: ‘…it is the view of the Government of Yukon that the Child and Youth Advocate office does not have the legal authority to conduct the kind of review that has been proposed.’
The CYAO report specifically singles out the minister’s comments. On page 4, it says ‘In an initial response to the Advocate’s July 29, 2021 notification letter, the authority of the Advocate was publicly brought into question by the Minister of Education. Education stated they were not in support of the Advocate’s review advancing as presented. Education did not respond to the concerns addressed in the Advocate’s notification, further enraging parents and community members.’
“On top of finding the Liberal government has continued to fail children, the CYAO report found the Minister contravened the act,” said Justice Critic Brad Cathers. “The Minister needs to explain why she contravened the Child and Youth Advocate Act and apologize to the Child and Youth Advocate for trying to deny her the ability to use her lawful authority to launch an investigation.”
You can find the Whitehorse Star article here.