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Letter of response from the Deputy Minister

December 22, 2003

The Honourable Gordon Hogg
Minister of Children and Family Development
Parliament Buildings
Victoria, BC

Dear Minister Hogg:

RE: Baseline Readiness Assessment of CLS Devolution

Minister, I am forwarding the report, Baseline Readiness Assessment of CLS Devolution.

This report was prepared by a three-person Panel whose task was to independently assess readiness for implementation of an authority to operate in its' entirety Community Living Services. Overall the Panel has given the Ministry a green light to proceed to the next steps of devolution. This is one more step toward fulfilling the shared vision of government and the parents and families in the community living sector ó one which is unparalleled in scope and breadth and which has received national and international acclaim. While the vision and impetus for change remain strong the Panel recommendations provides useful caveats that must be incorporated into the Ministry's planning if we are to fulfil the tasks ahead. Let me address some of these within the context of this letter.

  1. The Panel identifies the capacity of the ministry as a challenge in completing the necessary work, due to competing priorities and responsibility for on-going operations.

    I want to assure you that our budget is stabilized and in-hand, and that service transformation is well underway. I have already taken steps to enable the ministry to meet the demands related to transition in a timely manner. I have organized Executive to create a division and tasked one ADM with responsibility for the transition to community-based governance. In addition since receipt of the Panel report the Ministry has added significant senior resources to the ADM of Transition Services. The move to community based governance is a key goal of our service plan and the alignment of resources to achieve this goal will remain a top priority.

  2. The Panel identifies January 31, 2004 as a critical deadline.

    In response to the Panelsí recommendations, the ministry and Interim Authority have agreed, by January 31, 2004 to:

    • Develop an accountability framework that both parties agree to and understand;
    • Resolve outstanding issues related to the implementation of the service delivery model; and
    • Develop a plan to realize the Ministerís decision regarding services to children and youth with special needs and their families.

    As adherence to deadlines is important in achieving the June 2004 target date, I can assure you that those target dates will be considered as firm and I remain convinced that they are achievable.

  3. The Panel identifies the need to make a decision regarding what services, if any the Authority will provide to children and youth with special needs in June 2004.

    The ministry remains committed to the Ministerís direction of April 2002 regarding the distribution of services for children and youth with special needs and their families. The ministry and the Interim Authority will develop a plan to realize the Ministerís direction.

  4. The Panel recommends two independent follow-up assessments be conducted.

    The ministry is developing an overarching project management framework to ensure successful implementation. The ministry agrees that the progress must be carefully monitored with a critical view to key deliverables and key milestone dates. At the end of each point along the critical path to devolution, the Ministry will provide for an independent assessment of its progress. This will mean an assessment of the work completed at the end of January, 2004 and a further assessment at the end of March, 2004

Finally in keeping with your ethos of collaboration and co-operation I can assure you, Minister, that all of these steps forward will be taken with the full knowledge and involvement of the community living sector..

Yours truly,

 

Chris Haynes
Deputy Minister

cc: David Driscoll

 


   Last updated January 6, 2004

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