Progress Update on the Child and Family Services System’s Quality Improvement

News Releases

Yellowknife — December 18, 2019

Released in August 2019, the Child and Family Services System’s Quality Improvement Plan identified 70 action items to improve the Child and Family Services System in order to achieve better outcomes for children, youth, and their families.

To date, approximately 33% of the action items in the Plan have been completed. These include:

  • Successful completion of the Child and Family Services component of system-wide accreditation, which is one of the overarching activities aimed at improving the quality of services.
  • Developed a project plan to conduct ongoing assessments of what the optimal skill mix, workload, and caseloads  are for Child and Family Services to ensure a fair and equitable distribution of resources across all regions.
  • Developed and implemented a foster care recruitment and retention strategy in collaboration with the Foster Family Coalition of the NWT.
  • Updated contact standards to reflect leading practices so that children are better supported in their needs.

The Quality Improvement Plan Progress Tracker reflects this latest quarterly update, and can be found at the following link:


“The responsibility of making sure that children and youth in our care, and their families, are receiving the right kinds of support, is something that we take very seriously.  Engaging with Indigenous governments, listening to families and those in our care, and communicating directly with frontline staff and stakeholders, remains critical to our Quality Improvement Approach. We are learning from their experiences and are making sure that the right tools and supports are in place to achieve our goal of better outcomes for children, youth and their families.”

- Diane Thom, Minister of Health and Social Services


Quick Facts

  • The Plan focuses efforts on ten priority areas for making changes in the Child and Family Services system:
  • System Improvements
  • Prevention Services
  • Cultural Safety and Respect
  • Foster Care Services
  • Investigations
  • Structured Decision Making®
  • Case Management; (8) Permanency Planning
  • Specialized Placement Services; and
  • Accountability Structure.
  • The Plan identifies four strategic directions to improve the system and address priorities:
    • Culture of Quality: Embedding quality practice into our culture
    • Human Resource Planning: Making sure the right people are in the right places
    • Building Staff Capacity: Investing in our staff
    • Engagement: Drawing on the knowledge and experience of others
  • To meet the goals of the Plan, the GNWT invested $3.3 million to add positions to support child and family services.
  • Informed by engagements and face-to-face meetings with stakeholders and Indigenous governments, action items were reprioritized and refined with 70 action items identified.
  • To date, 23 action items are completed and 47 are on track.


Related Links



Media Contact

Damien Healy
Manager of Communications
Department of Health and Social Services
Government of the Northwest Territories
1-867-767-9090 ext. 49034