Citizen participation in child welfare, toward real citizen power

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Knott, Cindy
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This thesis assembles not only information obtained from the literature on citizen, participation and the child welfare field, but also draws on my views, opinions, and professional experience. I have been employed in the child and family services system for approximately ten years as a front-line child protection social worker. This has allowed me to directly experience the impact of not only participating in decisions being made in the system, but also to observe, at times, the frustrations and detrimental effects to those clients being served. The opinions expressed in this thesis do not necessarily reflect those of other employees in the child welfare field. This thesis is not meant to be a comprehensive study of citizen participation in child welfare and is not meant to draw conclusions on how the child welfare system should look in Winnipeg. Instead, it is intended as a way of looking at how the system has developed, the benefits that participation can bring to those involved, and how the system could continue to develop in the future.