FINDING COLLABORATIVE SOLUTIONS
On 24 May 2018, the Office of the Prime Minister hosted the second collaborative meeting between the Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (CATT)
and the Children’s Homes Association of Trinidad & Tobago (CHATT). The event took place at the International Waterfront Complex, Tower D, and included
over fifteen (15) Community Residences from across Trinidad & Tobago.
The Director of CATT and chairman of the meeting, Ms. Safiya Noel stated that these joint stakeholder meetings are geared towards increasing the dialogue
among our stakeholders especially our Community Residences who play a pivotal role in safeguarding our children. The Authority highlighted the
amendment in the ‘designation of licences’ for Children’s Residences (Children’s Homes) Regulations 2018 under the Children’s Community Residences,
Foster Care and Nurseries Act Chap. 46:04 to provide temporaryand conditional licence and not solely to designate full licences which is a lengthy and exhaustive
process. Additionally the timeframe for fulfilling the CR licence requirement is to be lengthened within the legislative Regulations.
Based on comments and presentations made by the representatives of the Children’s Homes Association of Trinidad & Tobago, the Children’s Authority of
Trinidad & Tobago agreed to work on strengthening the ‘transitional and reintegration processes’ for children placed in the Communality Residences.
It was agreed that the placement and monitoring system will be reviewed and restructured to create a more effective and collaborative process.
Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minster (Gender & Child Affairs), Ms. Jacqueline Johnson also shared a strategy currently being implemented
to ensure that Children receive optimum continuum of care within the Community Residences. She also spoke of the strategy being adopted by the Minister of State,
the Honourable Ayanna Webster-Roy to have key stakeholder Ministries and agencies play an active and involved role in the delivery of services to the nation’s children.
In conclusion, the Licensing and Monitoring process and the Administrative Policies that govern the Care of Children presenting challenges which will continue
to be addressed collaboratively in future meetings.