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Peel Children's Aid Society Profile on Adoption Assistance

Updated August 2008

Agency Contact Person

Nadine Helgason
Peel Children's Aid Society
6860 Century Avenue
West Tower
Mississauga, ON L5N 2W5
Phone: 905-363-6131
Fax: 905-363-6133
E-mail: NHelgason@peelcas.org

NACAC Representative (Parent/Volunteer)

Currently, there is no Ontario Representative. If you or someone you know would like to volunteer to help families learn more about adoption assistance, please call Jeanette Wiedemeier Bower at NACAC, 651-644-3036 or 800-470-6665.


Adoption assistance may be available for children with special needs. Often, assistance is provided to encourage the adoption of special needs children and remove the financial disincentives to adoption for the families. If you have questions, please call the North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) at 651-644-3036 or our subsidy help line at 800-470-6665, or e-mail us at adoption.assistance@nacac.org.


Ontario’s Adoption Resources on the Web:

Ontario’s Ministry of Children and Youth Services

http://www.children.gov.on.ca/mcys/english/programs/
child/adoption/index.asp

Federal and Ontario Provincial Nonrefundable Tax Credits

http://www.cga-ontario.org/contentfiles/
publications_promotions/ptp/federal.aspx

Peel Children’s Aid Society web information:

http://www.peelcas.org


1. Peel CAS's legal definition of special needs is as follows:

Our agency will consider any child who has special needs, or we anticipate given their history that the child will have future special needs and need a subsidy.

There is no provincial standardization. Each agency has their own way of handling subsidies.

2. If available, the standard adoption assistance rate at Peel CAS is:

There is no standard adoption assistance rate. We look at the individual needs of the child.

3. Specialized rates, if available, are based on the extraordinary needs of the child, and/or the additional parenting skill needed to raise the child. If Peel CAS offers special allowances over and above the standard rate, the criteria used to define the higher rates are as follows:

No.

4. In addition to monthly payments, what sort of post-adoption services (respite, counseling, residential treatment, parent training, etc.) are provided? When available, are these services formally specified in the adoption assistance agreement in Peel CAS?

We offer subsidies for therapy, tutoring, orthodontia, physical care of a physically challenged child. The only other form of post adoptive services we offer is a support group for the adoptive parents. The group is not a part of any subsidy agreement.

5. What medical or dental services are available at Peel CAS?

The family is expected to use provincial health care and any benefits through employment before using their subsidies.

6. When my child turns 18, which benefits, if any, are available to our family?

Our subsidy agreements terminate at the age of 18.

7. Do relatives adopting under the program receive the same benefits as non-relatives?

We rarely do relative adoptions as they would more likely go through a private worker or agency, but when we do we would provide the same subsidy.

8. Do children adopted from private agencies receive the same subsidies as those children adopted from public agencies?

We do not place through private agencies.


Programmatic Procedures

9. When do subsidy payments begin?

All subsidy agreements can start at the time of placement. The starting times do not differ for different types of adoption assistance.

10. Will Peel CAS consider my family income to determine my child's benefit package?

The family's income is a part of the process and a financial statement is requested. However, the emphasis is more on the child's needs when placed given the family's situation may change over the years of the placement.

11. Are prospective adoptive families routinely notified of all benefits available to them at Peel CAS?

The family signs an annual contract that outlines the amount that has been provided. We do not publish a brochure for prospective families.

12. Who sets the assistance rates and how are they established?

The individual adoption worker sets the rate. The rate is based on the anticipated needs of the child.

13. Who makes the final determination of a child's eligibility at Peel CAS? What roles, if any, do workers and administrators at the agency or regional level play in eligibility determination and/or assistance negotiation?

The individual adoption worker suggests that assistance is needed, and the request is approved by the supervisor and director.

14. Once a child is determined eligible for assistance, is there any requirement to look for an adoptive family who will accept a placement without assistance?

No.

15. Once eligibility is established, how and by whom are assistance agreements negotiated at Peel CAS?

The individual adoption worker suggests the amount of the adoption assistance, and it is approved by the supervisor and director.

16. A child's adoption assistance agreement may be periodically reviewed by the agency. What is the typical process used at Peel CAS?

We review the subsidy every year by contacting the family and getting an update on the child's progress and the family situation. The family fills out a new financial statement and then new contracts are drawn up and signed.

17. Can adoption assistance agreements be modified if requested by adoptive parents?

They can be modified during the yearly review but we rarely increase the amounts previously agreed upon.

18. A deferred or nil agreement is one in which the initial monthly assistance payment is $0. If a child's needs are listed as high risk and symptoms later manifest, the payment is renegotiated. Are deferred agreements offered at Peel CAS?

No, our amounts are set at time of placement.

19. What are the exact steps a family must go through to access the appeal process at Peel CAS?

The family can appeal through our complaint and review process. This allows the family to have their situation reviewed by different levels of management.

20. Families may request assistance after the finalization of an adoption under certain circumstances. Below is the process by which families access adoption benefits after finalization.

We do not do post finalization requests for adoption assistance. The amount is set before finalization and is used until the child turns 18.


System Operation and Program Funding

21. How is the adoption assistance program operated and funded at Peel CAS?

The Peel Children’s Aid Society is an individual agency that is independently run but funded by the province. However, the adoption assistance program is not funded by the province.

22. Below are other programs that may delineate Peel CAS's adoption assistance program from others around the country.

None.


North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC)
970 Raymond Avenue, Suite 106
St. Paul, MN 55114
phone: 651-644-3036
fax: 651-644-9848
e-mail: info@nacac.org
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