Vancouver council wants province to make changes following report on Kamloops girl who fell through foster care cracks

Paige died of an overdose at age 19 in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside and a new report from British Columbia's representative for children and youth says the government could have prevented her death.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-B.C. Representative for Children and Youth

VANCOUVER - After reviewing a lengthy report on a young woman who fell through the cracks of government care, Vancouver’s city council is calling on the province to make changes for better foster care in B.C.

On July 7, the province’s representative for children and youth Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond spoke to councillors about her May 2015 report “Paige’s Story: Abuse, Indifference and a Young Life Discarded”. The report delivers an in depth analysis of a young girl only identified as Paige, who spent her whole life in the Ministry of Children and Families' system. Turpel-Lafond showcased provincial workers’ failures to assist Paige with counselling or a proper foster home. Paige died from a drug overdose in Vancouver’s downtown east side shortly after her release from the foster care system at age 19.

The city agreed to call on the provincial government to extend foster care to the age of 24 and remove the 'aging out of the system' practice, create a secure care system for children and youth, add more 'rapid response capacity' for serious risk cases, and adopt all of Tupel-Lafond’s recommendations from the conclusion of her report.

This fall, city staff is complied to report on the progress of implementing changes related to Vancouver from the report.

To read Paige’s story, click here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Glynn Brothen at, or call 250-319-7494. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

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