#Children's Rights
Minister Mary Mc Neil of the Ministry of Children and Family Development

At the end of March, 2012, 77 vulnerable children will lose out on their chance for the kind of care and early learning that often means the difference between a life on the streets and the ability to earn a living wage. The research shows that children who start behind, stay behind.

These kids drop out school and join the cycle of poverty that has plagued inner-city neighbourhoods such as Strathcona. Funding from the province has enabled Ray-Cam Community Centre to provide early learning and care for inner-city children and their families. This money has meant that even children who require extra staff supports can benefit from a positive child care experience. Children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorder, and a multitude of other health and social challenges can learn and grow in a supported and caring neighbourhood environment.

Judy McGuire of the Ray Cam Board of Directors reports that “Our Board of Directors contacted the minister back on November 5th, 2011, when we were notified that our contract would not be renewed. After months of waiting for a response, Minister McNeil still hasn’t responded. This is a crisis. We need help now.”

See the CBC news story here:


See the CKNW news story here:


See our video of the press conference here


We the undersigned are requesting Minister Mary McNeil of the Ministry of Children and Family Development to prevent the unilateral restructuring of the Supported Child Development contract held by Vancouver Native Health Society.

We are requesting the Ministry to order a full financial disclosure, a comprehensive review of the governance practices, release the information used to make this unilateral decision and implement a community engagement process before to get informed consent before any restructuring of the program.

As we understand it, this restructuring has the potential to eliminate at least 68 special needs childcare seats, mostly urban Aboriginal children and other impoverished children, who reside in the Inner City of Vancouver.

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The Disclose, Review & Release Vancouver Native Health Society Child Development Contract petition to Minister Mary Mc Neil of the Ministry of Children and Family Development was written by Debbie and is in the category Children's Rights at GoPetition.