Community Services minister defends Quest care home
Response comes as parents question how Quest staff deal with residents
Nova Scotia's Community Services Minister is defending a Lower Sackville care home as some parents question how staff deal with those with autism and intellectual disabilities.
The questions were raised after Barb Gillis’s son Paul, 23, suffered a bruise to his head. He’s lived at the Quest Regional Rehabilitation Centre for four years and has been injured before.
Gillis said she was given limited and conflicting reports about what happened between her son and his caregiver. She has filed a complaint with the RCMP.
“My son has been injured and I'm not allowed to find out why,” she said.
Those who work with people with disabilities understand her concern.
“I would want to read the incident report. I would want to know what happened prior to the incident and afterwards," said Jean Coleman, the executive director of the Nova Scotia Association for Community Living.
"If that information isn't forthcoming because of privacy laws — or for whatever reason — I would be very concerned,” she said.
Gillis and two other parents whose adult children live at Quest question the level of training of staff there.
But Nova Scotia’s Community Services Minister Joanne Bernard said she has no questions about the performance of Quest’s staff.
"The Quest Centre is actually one of the most capable and caring facilities that we have in the Maritimes," she said.
Bernard said any facility funded by the Department of Community Services has to have certain training of "seven core competencies.
"Quest actually goes above and beyond that. They actually have additional training to support persons with autism," she said.
Quest has undergone two inspections every year since 2009. The most recent inspection, which was conducted last month, found no issues.
Laura Arthurs, Quest's executive director, said she's not able to speak about Paul Gillis' experience, but they do have rules for reporting, reviewing and following up on incidents.