MCFD grants responsibility
Robert Riley Saunders
The Ministry of Children and Family Development adopts "vicarious responsibility" for actions by a Kelowna social worker accused of stealing money from vulnerable youngsters in his care.
The Ministry filed its reply on Thursday in the Vancouver Court Registry for a court action filed by the public prosecutor and trustee involving former Kelowna social worker Robert Riley Saunders.
In its reply, the ministry also agrees that ordinary injuries and judicial interest in the applicant in one of several litigation involving more young people are appropriate.
"The province admits that Mr Saunders was negligent, dismissed and converted the applicant's funds, committed misunderstanding in the public office, fraud and breach of the fiduciary duties owed to the applicant and further admit the applicant as a result," explains the document.
It continues to inform Saunders granted for the conversion of funds in March this year, and steps were taken to ensure the immediate safety of children and young people in their case. A forensic review was initiated and the case was reported to the police.
MCFD launches a separate review of its contracts and payment processes.
"Since the accusations first came to light, the ministry has offered support and services, including counseling, to children and adolescents affected by social worker actions," the ministry said in a press release.
"MCFD will work with the applicant's advice to resolve these matters in a way that does not cause further trauma to the affected persons."
Thursday's response is only valid for the specific action by the public prosecutor and trustee.
The Ministry says they will react to each of the other litigation over time.