Death of child in provincial care surrounded by secrecy
Privacy law prevents province from acknowledging death of Edmonton-area girl
The Province of Alberta cannot confirm that a young girl in the province's care died recently in an Edmonton group home.
Sources told CBC News the elementary-school-aged girl, who was developmentally delayed, died Sunday.
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However child-care officials tell CBC privacy issues prevent them from admitting that a child has died, even if the child is not being named.
"The advice I've received is that I can't confirm that," said Edmonton Child and Family Services spokesperson Adam Holm.
The issue of secrecy in such cases erupted in November when it was learned the province only reported 56 of 145 deaths of kids in care since 1999.
The NDP's Rachel Notley said the province has to be more transparent.
"They're hiding behind overused privacy protection," she said.
Newly-named Minister of Human Services Manmeet Bhullar says the law is the law.
"I'm not saying this is perfect, we need to look at this," he said.
Bhullar said plans to hold a round table discussion on the issue are going ahead, but no dates have been released.
In the meantime, CBC News has learned that workers at the group home where the little girl died are getting grief counselling.
With files from CBC's James Hees