Manitoba government news release – The number of children in the care of Manitoba Child and Family Services (CFS) has decreased for the first time in the last 15 years, according the department’s year-end numbers, Families Minister Heather Stefanson announced today.

“While these numbers capture a snapshot of one point in time, they provide us with encouraging sign that Manitoba is heading in the right direction,” Stefanson said. “We need to acknowledge and thank the authorities, agencies, front-line workers and communities for their commitment, dedication and hard work that we believe has led to this positive trend that is emerging.”

Numbers from March 31, 2018, show 10,328 children in care, a reduction of 386 or 3.6 per cent from the March 31, 2017, count.

An additional 448 were reported in non-paid care, either reunited in their own home (living with a parent, guardian or a lifelong family member) or placed in supervised adoption, without government financial support. The total of 10,776 open files is a reduction of 576 from last year, or 5.1 per cent overall.

Family reunifications have increased by more than eight per cent across Manitoba and apprehensions have decreased by more than nine per cent over the last year.

The total number of paid service days by government increased from 2,979,061 to 3,191,131, a  7.1 per cent increase. The department noted a growing need for extended agreements to help young adults age 18 to 21 transition to independence through access to resources such as education programs and employment opportunities.

Read the entire release here.