Identity of teen who died in provincial care to stay secret
Director of children's services bound by current law to protect identity
The name of teen who died while living in an Edmonton group home this week will not be made public despite her mother's wishes and a new bill which would allow such requests.
Eldon Block, the provincial director in charge of The Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act, rejected CBC's request Friday to lift the publication ban.
The publication ban of the identity of children in care is automatic and extends beyond a child's death.
Block called the 15-year-old girl's death "an extremely sad situation," saying in an email, "I assure you that my colleagues and I mourn the loss of every child and, like you, want to see better outcomes for Alberta's children."
According to the current law, the director can lift a publication ban only if he believes it's in the best interests of the child or necessary for the proper administration of justice.
Block concluded this case does not meet those criteria.
The girl's mother told CBC News she wanted her daughter's name and face to be made public.
"There shouldn't be (a) publication ban. I have a problem with it, because there's a lot of kids who died in care and nobody knows about."
Today family and friends grieved the teen at her funeral in Maskwacis south of Edmonton.
An amendment to the act that would permit a child's identity to be made public if the family so desires is in second reading at the Alberta Legislature.
With files from CBC's Janice Johnston