Manager's departure linked to foster home concerns, social services minister confirms
Following slow progress fixing problems in the foster home system, it was time for senior civil servant Tim Korol to go, Saskatchewan's Social Services Minister Donna Harpauer says.
People in the ministry received an email this week informing them that Korol is no longer an assistant deputy minister in charge of child and family services.
In February, the Saskatchewan Children's Advocate, Marvin Berstein, said the system was in crisis, with 259 foster children being in overcrowded homes, and as many as 21 children being placed in a single home at once.
Harpauer chose Korol, an adviser, to lead the ministry's response in fixing the problem.
Korol is a former police officer who Harpauer knew, in part, because he had volunteered on her election campaigns. The NDP Opposition questioned his qualifications for the job, noting his lack of experience in the social services field.
And under Korol's watch, the overcrowding problem got worse, with 20 per cent more children in overcrowded homes.
That's why, Harpauer said, after four months on the job it was time for Korol to go.
"I wish more has, had been done and that progress had gone faster in different areas," she said.
Harpauer also said: "I'm looking forward to the new leadership we have in the deputy minister, and she wants to take a look at the organization and put together a team that she is confident in."
In the email sent to staff Wednesday, that deputy minister, Marian Zerr, said that over the summer she will be working to restructure the ministry in order to promote more accountability and results.