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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The regional administration of public welfare in British Columbia Hill, Ernest David 1950

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is*/ /\$ THE REGIQK&L ADMINISTRATION OF HJBLIC lELEARE IN BRITISH COLUMBIA L Survey of the present a d m i n i s t r a t i o n i n the £ight of I t s h i s t o r i c a l development ERNEST DAVID HILL Thesis Submitted in P a r t i a l Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of MASTER OF SOCIAL WORK In the Department of Social Work 1950 The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia. A B S T R A C T This thesis examines public welfare administration in British Columbia, An historical review reveals the beginnings of the present administration as a number of "bits and pieces" of welfare legislation which were gradually co-ordinated over a period of f i f t y years. The present operations of the administration are examined in general but focus is taken particularly on headquarters relationships with field units or regions* These are discussed and evaluated in the light of current administrative principles and against the background of difficult terrain and isolated regions common to the province. Delega-tions of authority from headquarters to the field receive special attention* The greater part of the material for the thesis was obtained by direct interview with provincial officials. With considerable reference to theory the information was then subjected to cri t i c a l analysis. It was found that the public welfare organization had achieved: (a) A uni-fied administration of technically good design^ (b) A plan for head-quarters field-relationship suitable to provincial terrain^ (c) A partial implementation of the plan. Several unsolved problems prevented fuller use of the plan: (a) Lack of agreement among a l l elements of the administration regarding the decentralization* (b) Scarcity of personnel professionally trained in social work, (c) Cumbersome provincial-municipal relationships in re-gard to public welfare. These problems point to s t i l l existing needs: (a) A redefini-tion of administrative objectives acceptable to a l l elements, (b) A greater supply of professionally trained personnel (c) Increased standards of treatment and supervision in the field. This study was aade possible through the interest of the o f f i c i a l s of the provincial welfare administration, I am particularly indebted to Fir. 3. Tf. G r i f f l t h , Deputy Minister of Welfare, for his kind permission to undertake the project, My thanks are also due to the Assistant Director of Welfare, Miss Amy Leigh, the Chairman of the 014 Age Pensions Board* Mr* J . H. Creighton, and the Assis-tant Superintendent of Child Welfare, Mr• H, E. Blanshard, a l l of whom were generous their time and encouragement* I would especially l i k e to thank. Mr. James. A, Sadler, Administrator of Region II, who at considerable expense of his own time and patience, instructed me i n the practical detail of how the decentralized region oper-ates. His assistance was invaluable. My thanks are expressed to Dr. Leonard C. Marsh, who encouraged and directed me, an often recalcitrant stu-dent, i n the s p i r i t of research* May I also express my appreciation to Professor William, Dixon for his guidance through the mazes of administrative theory. His suggest-ions and encouragement were most helpful. TABLE OF OOMTENT3  Chapter Page I Genesis of the Present Administration Di f f i cu l t ie s of i solat ion and low population* The weakness of municipal development. Evol-ution of welfare services. The (Bra of disper-s ion. A period of amalgamation 1 II The Decentralized Administration Drawbacks of central ization. Communications a c r i t i c a l problem. The solution of decen-t ra l i za t ion . Description of the decentraliz-ed administration. Physical description of the regions 23 I I I Delegation to the Region-Services. Decentralization incomplete. Services centra-l i z e d . Services decentralized. Reasons for remaining central ization. The method of f i e l d control . . 35 IV Delegation to the Region - F ie ld Management Delegations i n personnel practices, budget formulation f i s ca l and accounting, and com-munications. 56 V Delegation to the Region - Community Relation- ships The Social Assistance Act. Standards set by the Act. The task of enforcement 75 VI Present Appraisal and Future Development of  Decentralization" Technical soundness. Philosophical disunity. The need for common objective. Treatment and rehabi l i tat ion as objectives. Personnel r e -quirements. An interim statement of objective 89 MAP Regional Map of Br i t i sh Columbia * CHART Chart of the General Administration,Divisions and Regions of the Welfare Branch of the Br i t -ish Columbia Department of Health and Welfare. APPENDICES A # jj.st of Services Implemented by the Welfare F ie ld Services B» Sample sheet of welfare expenditure i n Municipality "X" for the month of February 1950 BIHI,IQGRAHIY T H E R E G I O N A L ADICEmSTRATLOM' OF P U B L I C  W E L F A R E PT B R I T I S H COLUMBIA CHAPTiiR I GEWiiSXS OF THE PRESK.i ABMTIEDaKBATICI* The growth of public welfare services in Br i t i sh Columbia has been one of continuing development. In 1874, the third year after confederation, a l l expenditures which 1 might be remotely termed "welfare** did not exceed $12,000* Seventy-five years later public expenditure for socia l services was exceeding $7,000,000. annually* In 1949 the Minister of Health and Welfare headed one of the largest departments i n the government. The Welfare Branch of the Department alone employed a staff numbering i n the hundreds, and maintained some twenty-four offices throughout the regions and municipalities of the province* To accompany this growth there has been a slower development of administrative method. In the past, the administrative side of things frequently f a i l ed to keep pace with the quality of program being offered* At more than one point good services were hindered by inept adminis-trative structure. Reforms were introduced from time to 1 Br i t i sh Columbia, Public Accounts. 1874, p.160 f f . Of this amount $11,000. were grants to hospitals . 2 Br i t i sh Columbia, Public Accounts. 1948, p . EE139 f f . The actual expenditure given i s |7,382,577.00. This figure i s exclusive of public health expenditure. - 2 -time to remedy these discrepancies but these almost always lagged behind the need. Recently, extensive changes were undertaken including the ins t i tut ion of regional authorit-ies and tne decentralization of several major responsibil-i t i e s from the central offiee in Victor ia to these author-i t i e s . This study concerns i t s e l f with various aspects of this decentralization, why i t came about, i t s present stage of development and f i n a l l y , i t s l i k e l y future course. Physical Faotors Influencing Development. In i t s physical sense B r i t i s h Columbia i s easily accessible neither to the travel ler nor the administrator. The province pre-sents a vast stretch of 366,255 square miles, most of which consist of heavily folded mountain range. This runs with l i t t l e interruption, north-south from the United States of America to Alaska and extends from the coast with i t s islands to the Alberta boundary on the east. Breaking the pattern are numerous r iver and lake valleys and a number of large upland plateaux. These allow space for the flow of communi-cation and concentrations of population. The to ta l effect i s a pattern of natural regions isolated each from the other by d i f f i cu l t physical barr iers . These i n turn are separated from any central point of govern-ment by the added obstaoles of sheer distance and poor com-munication. The location of the provincial capital at V i c -tor ia i n the south-west corner of the province does not improve the communication picture. U n t i l recently, the journey from Victor ia to the Peace River i n the north-east, - 3 -a direct distance of 540 miles, involved a travel distance of 1*340 miles, a substantial detour into the province of Alberta, and a continuous travel l ing time of sixty hours by boat and t ra in * Alleviated now by modern transportation, these distances weighed heavily on the administrators of the pro-vince i n the early days. In a br ie f presented i n 1911 to the Dominion Government enti t led Memorandum Respecting  Claims of B r i t i s h Columbia for Better Terms, one of the chief claims for increased federal grants to the province rested on the excessive cost of administration caused by: "physical configuration of the Province, which renders l oca l administratioji exceptionally ex-pensive and d i f f i c u l t , and i n a ra t io of great disparity as compared with those of other pro-vinces**. 3 An even ear l ier statement notes that: " B r i t i s h Columbia's per capita expenditure for C i v i l Government, ar i s ing out of the services of the Government, required i n widely scattered communities i s over nine times that of the aver-age of the other provinces.**^ The isolated regional nature of the province had then, and s t i l l continues to have, a deep influence on the provincial administrator and the ways In which he attempts to bring services to people. Whatever other problems he may have to face he must grapple continuously with the distance and iso-la t ion of his administrative outposts, m a l l his calcula-tions, these are the constant factors. A good deal of recent 3 B r i t i s h Columbia, Memorandum Respecting Claims of  B r i t i sh Columbia for Better Terms, p. 1. oited i n British" Columbia In the Canadian Confederation. V ic tor i a , King's Pr inter , 1938, p . 17. 4 B r i t i s h Columbia's Sessional Papers. 1905, p . D-7, cited i n B r i t i s h Columbia in the Canadian Confederation.p.15_ planning has gone toward; f inding solutions to these problems of Reparat ion" . In B r i t i s h Columbia, geography raises a second harrier to administration. With a population of 8L7,,861 and a density of £ . 2 8 persons per square mile in. 1941, the pro-vince can be characterized as underpopulated^ The direct administrative result of vast te r r i tory and sparse popula-t ion i s that the usual municipal forms of c i v i l government have never completely matured i n B r i t i s h Columbia. This follows from the fact that i n extensive areas, l o c a l con-centrations of population have always been much too weak to support municipal inst itutions and services. Consequently the provincia l l eve l has been forced to absorb the jur i s -dictions and provisions of services which, i n the older more thickly populated provinces of Eastern Canada, were the normal concerns of the loca l counties and townships. Cassidy comments on this s i tuation: 'The importance of the provincial government i n public af fairs Is further to be explained by the incomplete coverage and relat ive weakness of the municipal system. Only one-half of one per cent out of the tota l land area i s within municipal boundaries and some 204,000 people or twenty-four per cent of the population l ived In unorganized terr i tory i n 1941*6 Distr ibution i s a further problem. The population, small as i t i s , does not spread evenly throughout the pro-vince. As noted, concentrations of population are restr icted to provincial "open spaces." The most accessible of these, 5 Canada, Dominion Bureau, of s t a t i s t i c s , The Canada  Year Book., 1948, p . 149, Table 6. 6 Cassidy, H.M., Public Health and Welfare Re-Organiz-ation, Toronto, Ryerson Press, 1945, p . 39. - 5 -surrounding the lower mainland c i t y o f Vancouver and the i s l a n d c a p i t a l of V i c t o r i a , contains n e a r l y h a l f of the 7 t o t a l p o p u l a t i o n of the p r o v i n c e . Consequently, the a c t u a l p o p u l a t i o n d e n s i t y i n the up country area i s much lower than the average f i g u r e of 8,28 per square m i l e . M u n i c i p a l organ-i z a t i o n i s correspondingly weak. By the same token, p r o v i n -c i a l o r g a n i z a t i o n s through sheer n e c e s s i t y have developed to f i l l the gaps. The rugged t e r r a i n c o n t r i b u t e s f u r t h e r to m u n i c i p a l weakness by the type of i n d u s t r y i t makes p o s s i b l e . While manufacturing i s s l o w l y growing i n importance, f o r e s t r y , mining and f i s h i n g have always been important occupations o f Q the h i n t e r l a n d s . These i n d u s t r i e s , c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y mobile, c o n t r i b u t e o n l y s l i g h t l y t o the growth o f permanent settlement I n the areas they e x p l o i t . The labour f o r c e s which they employ do not become s e t t l e d r e s i d e n t s o f areas which are c o n t i n u a l l y s h i f t i n g as the timber stands or veins of ore peter out. I n consequence, the h i n t e r l a n d o f the pro-v i n c e has developed, through i t s p a r t i c u l a r n a t u r a l r e s o u r -ces, a s u c c e s s i o n of s h i f t i n g , r o o t l e s s communities and camps, l i t e r a l l y here today and gone tomorrow. The c o n t r i b u t i o n of these to a strong m u n i c i p a l system i s o b v i o u s l y n e g l i g i b l e . I n B r i t i s h Columbia, a d m i n i s t r a t i o n p l a i n l y faces a severe geographical problem. Great d i s t a n c e s , i s o l a t e d - areas and s c a t t e r e d p o p u l a t i o n , add to the c o s t s of adminis-7 S t a t i s t i c s g i v e the populations f o r 1941 as:Greater Vancouver, 351,491; Greater V i c t o r i a , 75,218. The t o t a l pop-u l a t i o n o f the province i s g i v e n as 817,861. 8 F i s h i n g , mining, f o r e s t r y and t r a p p i n g accounted f o r 12 .37 per cent o f the g a i n f u l l y employed i n B.C. i n 1931. Canada, Dominion Bureau of S t a t i s t i c s , The Canada Year Book, 1936, p. 806. trat ion at, the same time as they -weaken municipal development. They must he considered i n any administrative plan devised for the province and they must he taken into account i n evaluating present efficiency or desirable future develops ment s „ Evolution of Welfare Administration, The province entered Confederation In 1871. In consequence the jur i s-dict ion and responsibi l i ty clauses of the Br i t i sh North America Act were thereafter i n force and placed the general area of welfare within the responsibi l i t ies of the province?* The province i n turn by means of the Municipalities Act of 1871 delegated this responsibil ity to the municipalit ies 1 ^ This move was completely i n accord with, the social principles of the time which regarded the care of the poor and s ick as a local a f f a i r . To induce l o c a l participation of a private nature, a new Charitable Associations Act had been passed by the Province i n 1871 to encourage the incorporation of private charitable Ins t i tu t ions , 1 With these provisions, the obvious design of both the Dominion and the Province was to relegate welfare to. the local Institutions, public and private, en-courage these as much as possible and then have done with the matter. This pattern had been followed for centuries from the time of the Elizabethan Poor Law. Unfortunately, under-provincial conditions the plan was inadequate. Owing to the 9 Sections 91 and 92 of the Br i t i sh North America Act* 10 Province of Br i t i sh Columbia, Department of Health and Welfare, Annual. Report of the Social Welfare Branch,1948, p . 8. 11 Br i t i sh Columbia i n the Canadian. Confederation, p . 98. 7 -dearth of municipalities, the needs of the destitute persons resident in unorganized terr i tory were not being met, simply because no local authority was there to meet them. As a result , a Destitute, Poor and Sick Fund was set up i n the provincial, treasury i n 1880 to care for such persons. Their number was few, and the amounts paid out were t r i f l i n g . Nevertheless, the step was unprecedented Inasmuch as i t marked the f i r s t entrance of the provincial 12 government into the f i e l d of public welfare. The move was not significant administratively, since no legis lat ion was passed to direct the fund,, and no agency was set up to reg-ulate i t s operation. Applicants for help merely petitioned their loca l representative In the provincial legislature and payments were made by the. provincia l treasury. Thus modestly in i t i a ted , provincial participation lead inevitably to more part ic ipat ion. I f public opinion i n the larger, centers demanded certain measures of welfare, these also i n a l l fairness had to be offered to cit izens l i v i n g In the remote areas. In the years beginning the present century, public opinion did demand increasing amounts of social provisions. In 1901 an Act relat ing to chi ld wel-fare was passed. This Act provided for the lega l transfer of guardianship of orphaned or neglected children to the state and for the incorporation of Children's Aid Societies to give care to such children. In 1920. pensions were pro-vided for mothers without support; in 1927 pensions for the aged were made available. With the exception of the l a t t e r , 12: The tota l disbursements for the year 1886 equalled $428.00. The Br i t i sh Columbia in the Canadian Confederation, p.169, Table" 83. - 8 -the a d m i n i s t r a t i v e d e t a i l s of these programs c o u l d he hand-l e d l o c a l l y , the p r o v i n c e r e t i r i n g to a r e g u l a t o r y p o s i t i o n . Outside the m u n i c i p a l boundaries, however, the p r o v i n c e was f a c e d with the standing dilemma o f "unorganized t e r r i t o r y " a f t e r the passage of every new w e l f a r e a c t . To a p p l y i t s l e g i s l a t i o n u n i v e r s a l l y , the government was e v e n t u a l l y f o r c e d to a c t as i t s own agent, over the g r e a t e r p a r t o f the pro-v i n c e , on an e v e r - i n c r e a s i n g s c a l e . The precedent o f i n t e r -v e n t i o n suggested by the D e s t i t u t e Poor and S i c k Fund, c h a r i t a b l y innocuous as i t may have seemed, g r a d u a l l y became an i n e s c a p a b l e " f a c t of l i f e " f o r p u b l i c w e l f a r e i n B r i t i s h Columbia• "Whether t o p a r t i c i p a t e or not was o n l y the begin-n i n g problem. A d m i n i s t r a t i v e c o n s i d e r a t i o n s came to the f o r e , complete with g e o g r a p h i c a l c o m p l i c a t i o n s . F i r s t l y , under what, a u t h o r i t y i n the s t r u c t u r e of government, were welfare a c t s to be administered? Secondly, how ware the s e r v i c e s p r o v i d e d by law t o be o f f e r e d t o the i n h a b i t a n t s o f remote r e g i o n s ? I n modern a d m i n i s t r a t i v e terminology, these were qu e s t i o n s i n v o l v i n g c e n t r a l o f f i c e and f i e l d o r g a n i z -a t i o n . There was no such c l a r i t y of a d m i n i s t r a t i v e concept In the f i r s t decades of the c e n t u r y . To b e g i n w i t h , s o c i a l w e l f a r e was by t r a d i t i o n , f o r e i g n to s e n i o r l e v e l s of govern-ment. I n o l d e r p r o v i n c e s and s t a t e s i n North America and Europe, w i t h few e x c e p t i o n s , l o c a l a u t h o r i t i e s d e a l t w i t h s o c i a l measures. Few precedents f o r s e n i o r l e v e l adminis-t r a t i o n s of welfare were t h e r e f o r e i n e x i s t e n c e . C e r t a i n l y - 9 -there existed no convenient provincial department of welfare where new legis lat ion could he deposited. In addition,, wel-fare measures were at f i r s t isolated and re la t ive ly unimpor-tant in stature. They did not appear a l l at once i n the fu l ly blown, mass-program form, common today. They therefore did not loom as matters of the f i r s t magnitude to the legis-latures of the day who took, a categorical attitude toward them. As; a result , temporary solutions were devised. Each piece of welfare legis lat ion as i t developed was placed under the administrative jurisdict ion of an already exist-ing department, preferably one that was not too heavily overloaded. This:'"ad hoc" policy had i n time imposing re-sults . , For example, the Department of the Provincia l Secre-tary, generally selected as a welfare "catch-a l l " , which had 13 expenditures In 1876. of 12 ,355.,, ended the year 1944 with a 14 total expenditure of $8,758,217. The greater part of this lat ter amount was direct ly due to the welfare functions of the department, not to Its original functions. Many other departments were subsequently involved from time to time with "foundling" welfare legis lat ion, and for a time this method of dispersion was followed with relat ive success. In 1.901 the in fant s ' ^Act was passed by the govern-ment extending state, care to children, having no parent or parent capable of providing care. Administration was f i r s t 13 Br i t i sh Columbia, Public Accounts, 1876-193.6, cited In Br i t i sh Columbia i n the Canadian Confederation, p . 169, Table 83. > ... . 14 Br i t i sh Columbia, Public Ac counts, 1943-44 ,pp.EE151. f f . Of this total expenditure the original functions of the Depart-ment accounted for only one-eighth. The remainder represented combined expenditure on health and welfare services. - 10 -entrusted, to the Attorney General's Department, and sub-sequently to the Department of the Provincial Secretary, In 1919 as the demands upon the administration were increased, a Superintendent of Neglected Children was appointed as immediate supervisor of the program. In 1920 the Adoption Act and In 1922 the Children of Unmarried Parents Act were also added to the responsibi l i t ies of the Superintendent, This individual , under his superiors, i n the Department came to be the senior administrator of this collective program for children. The problem of covering the f i e l d of opera-tions was met by using every provincial representative that was available. The provisions of the Act were carried out by local law officers., magistrates and government agents. These constituted a " f i e l d staff" but they were not truly welfare personnel. In 1920 The Mothers' Pensions Act was passed to provide, "a widowed deserving mother with an income suff ic-ient to allow her. to give her children her undivided atten-tion and care." The administration of this Act was placed f i r s t with the Superintendent of Neglected Children (under the Attorney General's Department) u n t i l 1922, then with the Workmen''s Compensation Board under the Department of Labour u n t i l 1931. F ina l ly i t was lodged with the Provincial Secretary i n that year. The superintendent of Neglected Children, by now under the Provincial Secretary, was given immediate supervision of the new arr iva l under the alternative t i t l e of Superintendent of Welfare. This o f f i c i a l now rep-- 11 -resented the senior administrator of both the children's and the mothers' programs. This situation continued u n t i l 1935 when a separate Childrens' Divis ion was set up and two-dist inct appointments were made to the offices of Superin-tendent of Welfare and the Superintendent of Eeglected Children. A th i rd major program was set up i n 1927". The Old Age Pension Act was passed in conjunction with, federal l eg i s la t ion of that year. Central administration was placed with the Workmen's Compensation Board under the Department, of Labor and a separate f i e l d service was Instituted i n 1931. This categorical ins t i tut ion of welfare programs was continued with the onset of the depression In the 1930's. A fourth government welfare administration, the Unemployment Relief Branch of the Department of Labor was inst i tuted to meet unemployment distress. This service expanded rapidly In accordance with the corresponding growth in need. A senior supervisor was appointed and special staffs of inves-tigators were recruited to form a f i e l d service. To f a c i l i -tate the f i e ld operations, r e l i e f offices were opened i n numerous d i s t r ic t s throughout the province and a f i e l d force was inst i tuted. In setting up these f i e l d operations the old age pension and r e l i e f programs were following, to some degree, an ear l ier and more elaborate lead of the mothers' pensions program. The or ig inal leg i s la t ion of the Mothers' Pensions Act had attempted to face up to the administrative - IS -di f f i cu l t i e s of the province by providing a specialized f i e l d service to operate. In a l l sections of the province. To begin with,. Local advisory boards were authorized in various dis tr icts of the province "to maintain certain con-15 t r o l over applications and recipients . " In 1924 sis: women were appointed to do the necessary Investigation In the large c i t ies and the accessible rura l ones. Police officers continued to act as agents In the remote d i s t r i c t s . Thus began a f i e l d service devoted exclusively to welfare matters. One of the reasons behind the move was to be found i n the developing; concept that welfare, programs, were to offer "services" not only i n cash but In counselling; or case-work. Treatment, aimed at rehabi l i tat ion for welfare recipients was emerging as the goal of modern welfare programs. Police officers and magistrates heretofore employed as f i e l d agents were not In a position to offer such treatment services owing to their- other duties. More Importantly, they were also not trained to do so. I t was coming to be recognized that, e f f ic-ient counselling; required special t ra ining. The new pro-fession of socia l work was taking definite shape; and form with Its own established principles on how persons In trouble could best be helped. Training was required to implement these pr inciples . In 19.31, with the transfer of the administration to the Provincial Secretary, a significant step was taken i n the province. Dr. Charlotte Whittek of the Canadian Welfare Council was brought to Br i t i sh Columbia to do a study of the 15 Social Welfare Branch,, Annual Report. 1948., p . 10. - i s -mothers pensions service. A similar study had been made three years previously of the Childrens 1 Aid Societies of Vancouver. The cumulative result of these two Investigations into the welfare services of the province led to significant administrative change. These studies urged the employment of professionally trained social workers to give treatment services whether in public or private agencies. Following their recommendation,, the province came to subscribe to the principle that public welfare services should not only pro-vide Immediate aide but treatment aimed at rehabi l i ta t ion. Five new pension v i s i tor s , under, the supervision of a professional social worker, were sent to establish offices i n four parts of the Province: Nanalmo, Kamloops, New Westminster and Nelson. "Their work: was enlarged beyond that of checking continuing e l i g i b i l i t y and Included ser-vices with respect to the health of the family, the educa-tion of the children and social problems that, invariably arise when one parent is carrying the whole burden of caring 16 for chi ldren. " These f i e l d v i s i tor s were also employed" by the Children's Divis ion of the Provincia l Secretary "to obtain social information and to take such action as the 17 Superintendent (of Neglected Children) ordered". Thus was established the nucleus of a welfare f i e l d organization using professional social-work methods to provide treatment i n the area of family and chi ld welfare. With this early start In developing professional social-work supervision, the childrens and mothers programs became i n a sense "specialized" services, 16 Ibid p . 10 17 Ibid p . 11 - 14 -administered i n accordance with professional principles of socia l treatment. The f i e l d workers serving these programs also came to consist largely of professionally trained per-sonnel. In these two respects, they differed s ignif icantly from the other welfare programs. such as old age pensions; and r e l i e f . The la t ter were designed on the older restr icted basts of meeting need with cash outlay alone. The f i e l d staff which implemented these services reflected their basis of organization in being for the most part professionally untrained personnel. To re capitulate > : the f i r s t three decades of the century, which could be termed the Era of Dispersion, saw the ins t i tut ion of four major welfare programs i n the pro-vince, Child Welfare, Mothers' Pensions, Old Age Pensions and Unemployment Rel ie f . Separate central administrations and separate f i e l d organizations were features of a l l . The exception was the use of a single f i e l d service by the Children's and Mothers.' d ivis ions . It was on the whole, a period of separate programs, separate administrations and separate f i e ld services. It was also the period marking the entrance of professional social workers Into public welfare f i e l d . These were concentrated in the childrens' and moth-ers' services. Undoubtedly, i t was a time of great welfare pro-gress but many problems became prominent i n the face of such categorical growth. At an administrative l eve l the various divisions found that duplication and overlapping of - 15 -services and records was Inescapable and the necessary co-ordination of their respective programs was d i f f i cu l t to achieve. For one thing, divisions operated i n different departments, of the government and iirere thus effectively isolated.. In the f i e l d , co-ordination was several steps, more d i f f i cu l t since channels of authority were greatly ex-tended and no co-ordination existed between divisions at Victor ia even when the f i e l d established workable channels to headquarters. With the prevail ing structure of. separate f i e l d forces for each administration, the numbers, of agents available In the f i e l d for each program was smaller than should be for the large terr i tor ies included. Up to 1934 the f i e l d service employed by the Mothers' Pensions and Child Welfare divisions consisted of a dozen vis i tors j . some of whom were stationed i n the larger c i t i e s . F ina l ly , as the population of the province increased, there came also an ever-increasing; demand for the services of a l l divisions, with consequent increases in costs of administration as each overlapping divis ion expanded to meet the demand. The crying need was co-ordination and an end to duplication. A small start was made i n 1935 with the creation of a separate welfare administration within the Provincia l Sec-retary's Department. The divisions of Mothers' Pensions (renamed "Mothers' Allowances" in 1937), and Child Welfare were co-ordinated under a new senior administrative officer, the Director of Social Welfare. Other services., including the Destitute Poor and Sick Fund and the Industrial Schools, - 16 -were a l s o p l a c e d under t h i s o f f i c i a l . At the same time the f i e l d s e r v i c e , o r i g i n a l l y the c r e a t i o n o f t h e Mothers* Pensions d i v i s i o n , was e n l a r g e d , renamed the Welfare F i e l d S e r v i c e and o f f i c i a l l y p l a c e d at the d i s p o s a l o f the w e l f a r e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n . The amount o f c o - o r d i n a t i o n achieved can be e s timated from the s e r v i c e s handled by t h i s s i n g l e f i e l d s e r v i c e . They i n c l u d e d c h i l d w e l f a r e , mothers* pensions, the D e s t i t u t e Poor and. S i c k Fund, t u b e r c u l o s i s c o n t r o l , mental h o s p i t a l s , I n d u s t r i a l s c h o o l s and i n s t i t u t i o n a l c o l l e c t i o n s . With i t s e f f i c i e n c y i n p r e s e n t i n g t h i s v a r i e d program of s e r v i c e s to t h e p u b l i c , the Welfare F i e l d S e r v i c e r e p r e s e n t e d a working- example o f the advantages of i n t e g r a t i n g ; f i e l d s t a f f s . S i m i l a r l y , b e t t e r c o - o r d i n a t i o n a t the d i v i s i o n a l a d m i n i s t r a t i v e l e v e l i l l u s -t r a t e d the advantages to be g a ined from a u n i f i e d g e n e r a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n • R e - o r g a n i z a t i o n w i t h i n t h e P r o v i n c i a l S e c r e t a r y ' s Department now reduced to t h r e e the number o f completely separate welfare a d m i n i s t r a t i o n s and f i e l d s t a f f s . I n s p i t e of i t , the c o - o r d i n a t i o n problem of the t o t a l w e l f a r e p r o -gram remained l a r g e l y u n s o l v e d . D u p l i c a t i o n i n f i e l d s t a f f s and l o c a l o f f i c e s continued,, a s d i d o v e r l a p p i n g and d u p l i c a -t i o n s o f s e r v i c e s . There were many reasons f o r b r i n g i n g about f u r t h e r u n i f i c a t i o n o f a d m i n i s t r a t i o n . As an Annual Report of t h e S o c i a l Welfare Branch comments on the p e r i o d : " M a i n t a i n i n g separate f i e l d s t a f f s was extremely c o s t l y and r e s u l t e d i n much c o n f u s i o n and over-l a p p i n g . There was an obvious need f o r a co-- 1 7 -ordlnating office which would give orderly direction and formulate uniform pol ic ies to govern a l l social s e rv ice s . " 1 8 There was also at this time a movement among the administra-t ion i n favor of a. single comprehensive "family service" which would be implemented by trained social workers and would cover a l l areas of need served i n the past by the various categories, such as o ld age pensions,- mothers' pen-sions, etc., The o f f i c i a l record of the period notes the trend br ie f ly , "There was also support of the idea that a gen-eralized family service given, by competent socia l workers was more suited to public welfare adminis-trat ion than specialized services and would at the same time provide a more efficient, service to a l l the people . " 1 9 The idea of a generalized service was' attractive for a variety of reasons. From the point of meeting need, an elimination of categories with their usually res t r ic t ive governing- regulations would make for more f l e x i b i l i t y . Ob-viously treatment would also be more uniform If i t were authorized from a single source. (For example the present discrepancy between old age pensions and social allowances would not exist.) Administratively, a single generalized service would lend immense help to: the process of uniting various f i e l d staffs. On the other hand, i f the idea of categorical services prevailed i n the f i e l d , specialists in each category would have to be appointed to d i s t r i c t offices to handle each service. This would again amount to three f i e l d staffs. However, with a l l f ield, workers handling one 18 Ib id , pp. 21-22. 19. Ib id , p. 22 - 18 -single service, the number of staff to each office could be adjusted f lex ib ly to case load requirements. The pro-v inc ia l area, in spite of i t s extent, could then be staffed In the most economical and efficient manner. Several disadvantages also, appeared.. A general-ized service, because of i t s very f l ex ib i l i ty , , would require highly trained social xrorkers for the f i e l d staff , to assure that need, would be met equitably and (.because of the absence of specific regulations) according to high professional standards of treatment. P la in ly , I f directio.n was no longer to be afforded by categorical l eg i s la t ion and regulation, It had to be furnished from a base of professional training; and standards. The f i e l d staff available to the adminis-trat ion at this time did not f u l l y meet these requirements. I f the f i e l d forces of a l l existing categories were united to form, a single service, more than half of a l l the workers would be untrained to do social work i n the desired profess-ional sense. Such a union could have no other effect but to lower the professional standards of treatment established within the welfare f i e l d service of the mothers' and. chi ld-rens' programs. It would also make a f l ex ib le , generalized service more d i f f i cu l t to execute properly. In response to administrative demands for co-ordin-ation but i n the face of the noted d i f f i cu l t i e s regarding, trained staff , amalgamation of a l l services was begun i n 19.42;. A united general administration was devised within the Provincial Secretary's Department. The head of the ad-- 19 -ministration occupied a newly created post of Assistant Deputy Provincial Secretary and his assistants were t i t l e d the Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent of Welfare. A l l welfare services including; ch i ld welfare,, mothers' allowances, old age pensions and re l i e f were brought under the direction of this general administration. A single unif-ied headq.uar.ters organization was thus achie.ved. A similar union was made i n the f i e l d . One staff was formed from the three existing ones, with immediate success i n the avoidance of duplication or indeed,, t r i p l i c -at ion. It was, however, a union of professional and non-professional personnel on a supposedly equal basis. Since the administration continued to have rehabi l i tat ion as a major objective of Its new combined program, i t was fe l t that some social work: training; was necessary for the hitherto untrained r e l i e f and old age pension f i e l d personnel. Four six-week periods of in-service training were therefore offered by a professional social worker to a l l non-trained f i e l d staff during the following year. It was also discovered that professional workers continued In scarce supply and. some vacancies had to be f i l l e d with non-professionals. On entry, these were given three, months of in-service tra ining. These efforts resulted, by 1948., In a staff make-up of two-thirds professionally trained social workers and one-third personnel with in-service tra ining. This picture was (and. s t i l l is) complicated by a rather high rate of staff turn-over. However, through these efforts , - S O -f i e l d integration was- achieved and duplication was abolished with a minimum, of upset i n the former f i e l d staffs. At the: same time, the in-service training program assured that work standards of the mixed professional and non-professional f i e l d staff were as uniform as circumstances permitted. Great care was taken, to see that the supervisors and of f ic-i a l s located at divis ional offices were thoroughly trained and experienced professional social workers. The single generalized family service was not real ized for a variety of reasons more f u l l y developed later . However, the collective program of categorical services, which was inaugurated, was regarded as a prototype of an eventual single service to meet every type of need. The replacement of unemployment r e l i e f of. the depression era by the more f lexible system of the Social Allowances In 1945, brought the rea l izat ion of a single welfare service much closer to r e a l i t y . As; might, be expected, the actual physical problem of Integrating, diverse programs and f i e l d organization was not an easy one. The f i e l d services to this point had In-completely blanketed the province with three layers of staff . The problem, now was to reduce the three layers to one, thus: extending f i e l d coverage more completely. The strategic placement of offices and staff was also a problem In i t s e l f owing: to the diversity and extent of the natural regions of the province. Records, staff and offices a l l had to be sorted out on a co-ordinated basis and evenly distr ibuted. - 21 -This phase of re-organization was implemented by-five senior of f ic ia l s from the former Unemployment Rel ief Branch, who were familiar with the major areas, of the pro-vince. These were designated Regional Supervisors. Each was assigned a general area and entrusted with the defining; of a region and the re-distr ibution of offices and staff: within i t . To meet this task., these of f ic ia l s were delegated f u l l authority by the Superintendent of. Welfare: and were responsible only to that o f f i c i a l for their decisions. The appointment of regional supervisors with delegated authority from the central office to redistribute f i e l d staffs, marked the f i r s t use of decentralization In the provincial welfare administrative structure. With one exception, none of these supervisors had formal training In professional socia l work. The total reorganization of we If'are administration up to the year 1943, has been set out as follows: "'.....the Provincial socia l services, with respect to their administration to the people who stood i n need of them, was under one central authority, the General Administration of the Social Assistance Branch. Supervision and administrative direction with respect to the individual Acts* regulations and policies were given to the f i e l d staff by the specialized divisions* In twelve d i s t r i c t off ices , forty-three members of the. F i e ld Service Staff were giving a generalized service to the people within the terr i tor ies to which they were assigned." 20 Unity had f i n a l l y been achieved In administration, i n f ield, staff and par t i a l ly achieved i n the program of services. A centralized administration had evolved, phase by phase, from the bits of foundling social l eg i s la t ion , 20. Annual Report of the Social Welfare Branch, 1948,p.22. Note: The term "generalized service" as employed here actually refers to. a composite of categorical services applied by every f i e l d worker, not to a single generalized service covering a l l areas of need. ° - B2 -at one time scattered throughout the departments of govern-ment. A f i r s t phase saw the government forced to accept the responsibil ity of welfare services for the inhabitants of unorganized areas. A second saw the independent develop-ment of various programs,, from child welfare to old age pen-sions, and their administrations. This, phase also saw the Introduction of professional social work and the concept of "treatment" into the administration of services. Both of these Innovations had important subsequent influences on administrative structure. A third witnessed the progressive amalgamation of welfare services under a unified adminis-trat ion. In a fourth, phase not yet completed, welfare admin-istrators are seeking solutions to problems concerning decen-tra l izat ion and the concept of a generalized service. J C H A P T E R I I THE DECENTRALIZED ADMINISTRATION The welfare services emerged from the reforms of 1942 under a single head and served by a single f i e l d force. At least, the outward framework, of. unity had been achieved.. Sol id gains had been, made i n devising a single general ad-ministration, and by welding three field, staffs into one. But It soon became apparent that In administrations as i n other things, "the more things change the more they remain the same thing . " The simple act. of placing heretofore sep-arate services together, did notj as i t turned out, create an essential "unity" of them a l l . For example,, although, the categorical services of ch i ld welfare, old age pensions and unemployment r e l i e f had been amalgamated in the one adminis-trat ion, these same categories retained a good deal of their individual i ty i n the guise of headquarters divis ions . The latter were in essence the old head offices of the former separate services and were retained in the new structure to protect the legis lat ive standards of the respective cate-gories. These were necessary because amalgamation was under-taken without substantial alteration of the leg i s la t ion governing services. No single generalized service was i n - 24 -fact achieved. This divis ional exclusiveness was now projected into the f i e l d . Whereas the divisions remained multiple, the f i e l d was now one. The problem: therefore arose, of pro-tecting: the interests of each individual service i n f i e l d operations. On the other hand the general administration wished to confirm i t s right to control a l l f i e ld operations. These opposing aims; were not unique. They are notorious In administrations of any size, which serve multiple purposes. ,.-The ultimate and most, e v i l resolution of this dilemma occurs when the respective divis ions, In the Interests of standards, l i t e r a l l y "take over" control of f i e l d operations by means of their supervisions or specialist f i e l d advisors. As can easi ly be seen,, this results in a divided administration just as surely as If the union had been dissolved and. the cate-gories were, again on their own. Under these conditions truly unified administration becomes remote. A l l these problems were inherent i n the united administration after 1942. Another arose from the union of "treatment" and "non-treatment" categories, professional and non-professiomal administrative o f f i c i a l s , and trained and untrained f i e l d personnel. It must again be recognized that the amalgamation of a l l welfare services brought together personnel and phi lo-sophies which differed rad ica l ly In background and purpose. The chi ld welfare and family categories had been served and administered by professional social workers who saw welfare largely In terms of prevention and treatment. On the other - 25. -hand, the unem.ploym.erLt r e l i e f administrations and personnel were mainly c i v i l servants experienced i n supplying r i g i d l y regulated cash-aid for unemployment needs. The personnel of the old age pension service f e l l somewhere between the two. The unity of personnel was therefore not a unity and It be-came an immediate task of the general administration to work out a "modus vlvendi" which would be acceptable to a l l per-sonnel and permit the to ta l organization to move toward one set of objectives. A training program was set up for this purpose to give non-professionals acquaintance with social work principles and a careful tack was taken toward what seemed to be a "modified treatment" program ( i . e. treatment was to be the aim of the administration insofar as the t ra in-ing and the numbers of personnel permitted It .) Certain rea l i t i e s of the time confirmed this course, notably a war time shortage of any personnel, l e t alone of professional personnel, and also the re la t ive ly lor? output of new social workers from the professional schools. Combined with the. Increase of welfare demand,, these considerations made necess-ary the use of personnel who could not have f i t ted into a program with more elevated concepts of treatment. The s t r ic t -l y professional tradit ion i n the welfare administration, as exemplified by the ch i ld welfare d iv i s ion , had to adjust i t -sel f to a definite lowering of standards so that the object-ives of unity and co-ordination might be obtained. -• The most impressive problem for the new administra-t ion , however, turned out to be Br i t i sh Columbia i t s e l f . Certain, creakings i n headquarters-field relationships drew attention to the most pressing prablem of a l l . The stress was caused by the stretching; of communication l ines as the central office at Victor ia sought to control and supervise the enlarged operations of the welfare f i e l d service. The old problem of geography was beginning to assert Its i n f l u -ence on the new administration. P r i o r i t y was therefore given to finding a solution to the c r i t i c a l problem of communica-t ions . The other d i f f i cu l t i e s , c r i t i c a l as they were i n their own r ight , lost the immediate concern of the welfare directors. Because of distance and terra in, the f i e l d forces were Inevitably separated from the central of f ice , especially from the divisions which continued to furnish supervision to the f i e l d . Consequently,, authorization and supervision xrere slowed because of the attenuated communication l ines . In estimating the reasons for subsequent decentralization, offic-i a l reports emphasize the effect of the physical separation of f i e l d and headquarters. "The burden was... .great upon the divisions, for the professional supervisors guiding the workers, new to the separate specializations, had to make their supervisory memoranda ex-haustive. The time-lag i n receiving reports from the f i e l d and Issuing of supervisory i n -structions and advice slowed up the work of the f i e l d staff."1 The tempo of f i e l d activity,, thus geared to the work-load capacity of the divisional offices,, began to decrease as the demand for services increased and as the services themselves 1 Social Welfare Branch, Annual Report. 1948, pp.23-23. - 87 -grew i n number and scope. Any such decrease also meant a decrease i n the meeting of needs. The ultimate purposes of the administration and i t s programs were therefore seriously hampered. To complicate central- f ie ld relations from another angle, the welfare organizations were'at the same time, en-tering into rather intricate relationships with the municip-a l i t i e s . The Social Assistance Act of 1945 set out regula-tions and standards: for municipal departments which for f inancial and broad co-ordinative reasons, required an In-creased amount of supervision by the provincial welfare authorities. These matters of community relationships became most d i f f i cu l t to control centrally. Channels: of communi-cation between central office and Its f i e l d service at least existed even i f i n a congested state. Between the municipal-i t i e s and the central of f ice , however, there were no clearly defined methods of communication. The municipal authorities,, were i n need of close liajson, for on the whole they were un-familiar with the provincial services and standards which they were to administer i n their respective areas. There existed, therefore, an urgent need for central office to have close continuing contact with the municipalit ies, pre-ferably personal contact by experienced senior f i e l d personnel i f this were possible. No such personnel existed. The f i e l d service in i t s e l f became a large undertaking;. The plant, necessary to Its operations increased accordingly. Offices, records, stenographic staff, motor transport and similar 116" ©goat DEPT. OF HEALTH &WELFARS PROVINCE OF BRITISH COLUMBIA REGIONS - DISTRICT OFFICES -M U m O P M . OFFICES L E O - E N D : ® REGIONAL HEADQUARTERS © M U N I C I P A L O F F I C E S (AND DISTRICT OFriCS) 0 DISTRICT O F F I C E S (A. M A LOAM ATEO) MUNICIPAL O F F I C E S G E N E R A L A D M I N I S T R A T I O N . . . DIRECTOR OF WELFARE. ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF WELFARE. RISEAROH CONSULTANT. TRAINING SUPERVISOR. D I V I S I O N A L S T A F F . . . FAMILY DIVISION Provincial Supervisor I Social WofKers I CHI ID WELFARE Superintendent t, Deputu, 1 DIVISION Supervisors 4 Socia l Worker I OLD AGE PENSION Provincial Supervisor f B O A R D Socio I Worker t MEDICAL SERVICES DIVISION Director I PSYCHIATRIC DIVISION Provinciol Supervisor I MENTAL HOSPITAL Supervisors 1 Social Workers U CHILD GUIDANCE CLIHIC5 Clinic Supervisor I Social Workers 6 J-n&%?£X$PHS Provincial Supervisor , T.B. DIVISION Social Workers 8 V. D. Division SupeTvisot I Social Workers 2 BQVS't GIRLS' INDUSTRIAL SCHOOL Social Workers 3 F I E L D S T A F F ffCf^lftM I R E G I O N A L ADMINISTRATOR I I\tV7IWH I. FIEI.0 CONSULTANT DISTRICT SUPERVISORS SOCIAL WORKERS PROVINCIAL DISTRICT OFFICES 9. AMALGAMATED MUNICIPAL OFFICSSZ. C A S E L O A D 8,670. I 3 CFAlHM ? REGIONAL ADMINISTRATORS l ^ k W I V n FIELD CONSULTANT Z I DISTRICT SUPERVISORS S SOCIAL WORKERS 61 PROVINCIAL DISTRICT OFFICES e. AMALGAMATED MUNICIPAL OFFICES 7 • CASE LOAD 2 6 , 6 7 7 . R E G I O N A REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR I I N C V J I V n a. , : 1 E l _ D CONSULTANT DISTRICT SUPERVISOR 3 SOOIAL WORKERS 19 PROVINCIAL DISTRICT OFFICES 5. MUNICIPAL OFFICES 4. C A S E LOAD 5,314. ~ CEAmM A REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR • X b W I W n T . p | E L D CONSULTANT ufczureL. DISTRICT SUPERVISORS 3 SOCIAL WORKERS 14 PROVINCIAL DISTRICT OFFICES 7 I DISTRICT SUPERVISORS 2 SOCIAL WORKERS II PROVINCIAL DISTRICT OFFICES 6 S F I V I A M 5 REGIONAL ADMINISTRATOR r%CW IVII ^ 7. niSTRKT SUPERVISORS /Hartley 4 M FK0VINC1AU hAUNlCIPAL OFFICES 42 _ STAFF 204 ((Adam* plate Sold=nA ^ s n c r o f t - K A M U O O P s P i l ^ Hot ONG 0 o A BRITISH C O L U M B I A N o ° l EstevanPl D E P A R T M E N T O F L A N D S A N D F O R E S T S Honourable E. T. Kenney, Minister S c a l e To f i n <" N A N A I M O t ^ ^ ^ R N A B -c i T Y ^ K ^ r ^ P E N T I C T O N J C T Y O P P W C T O H ' CHILLWACIC <j/ ORepU>*c Marcus Bonn; efS> KaVispe" ndpolQ X J 136' 134° 130° 128° 126' ^ 0 R ^ # 0 F - v l C f 6 R . A 124° ,ewport9 ncoeur o'pjene 4 { 122° 120° 118° 116° - 88 -services a l l required supervision as f i e l d operations expanded. With respect to a l l these problems of communications, the central office was at a particular disadvantage. A l l of i t s powers of direction and supervision, whether divis ional or originating i n the general administration, were anchored at Victor ia or Vancouver, and most Ineffectually so as i t was turning out. The obvious course was to shorten communi-cation channels and since the f i e l d could not come to head-quarters, the directing powers must need go to the f i e l d . This, was done i n 1946. Decentralization was sought as a solution. The grand blueprint of the scheme adopted had the general administration and the divisions remaining at Victor ia or Vancouver, but with, these divis ional offices divested of their supervisors. These were placed out. close to operations in the d i s t r ic t off ices . In turn, the d i s t r i c t offices with their f i e l d workers and supervisors, were placed under the direction of regional administrators. These were found i n the five regional, supervisors, senior o f f i c i a l s from the unemployment r e l i e f administration, who had been assigned In 1948 to re-allocate f i e l d staffs and off ices . Under the new scheme, these represented the f ina l authorities i n the f i e l d and were answerable to the general administration for operations within their respective regions. Preparatory to altering aaminlstrative control , two important, steps were undertaken. The former unemployment - 3.9 -r e l i e f program, was discontinued and. replaced by a more flex-ible but restr icted program, of Social Allowances designed to meet, the needs of unemployed unemployables. Secondly,, the to ta l welfare organization v/as transferred from the Provincial Secretary's Department and combined with the provincial health authority to form the Department of Health and Welfare. It was now known as the Social Welfare Branch of that department. The Decentralized Structure. The administration Instituted in 1946 i s best described in i t s two major sec-tions, the central office and the f i e l d . The former consis-ted of the general administration and the divisions, the latter of regions, each staffed with a regional administrator, d i s t r i c t supervisors and. f i e ld workers. The general administration of the central office was headed by the chief executive of the Branch, the Deputy Minister of Welfare, who now possessed jur isdict ion over the operation and promotion of a l l social welfare services set up under provincial l eg i s l a t ion . He was to be legal ly res-ponsible for a l l the functions of management, planning, organ-i z i n g , staff ing, directing, co-ordinating, reporting and budgeting. To aid him in these tasks, the Deputy Minister delegated authority to his executive assistants, the Director of Welfare and the Assistant Director. Although some of these functions were to be achieved jo in t ly , the Director was i n general, responsible for. over-all policy and directing and the Assistant Director for staffing, reporting and f i e ld ser-vices. Also attached to central office were advisory units - 30 -to assist the general administration i n i t s tasks. Units of Accounting, Research and Medical Services were to he advis-ory., t o „ t h e Director of Social Welfare and a Training and Publications unit to the Assistant Director. There were three specialized divisions established, responsible through the general administration to the chief executive. These divisions administered the separate stat-utes that made up the provincial social l eg i s l a t ion . F i r s t l y the Family Division was the headquarters office in which the Social Assistance Act, the family services for which i t pro-vided and the Mothers' Allowance Act were to be administered so far as details of accounting and special problems were, concerned. This division was placed i n charge of a senior social worker. Secondly, the Old Age Pension Board made up a divis ion which, administered the Federal Old Age and Blind Pensions Act . The chairman of the Board was to be the chief executive of this d iv i s ion . Third ly , the Child Welfare Div-i s ion was to administer the Protection of Children Act , the Adoption of Children Act and the Children of Unmarried Parents Act insofar, as legal regulations and extraordinary problems were concerned. In addition, this divis ion was. to be res-ponsible for foster home payments for children in care. The chief o f f i c i a l In this divis ion remained the Superintendent of 2 Child Welfare assisted by a staff of socia l workers. In the second major section of the administration, the f i e l d , there were set up five geographical units each headed by a regional administrator. These operated under the 2 There, are two more nominal divisions of - Industrial Schools and the Provincial Home but these are not. headed up by senior personnel of divis ional rank.. For purposes of this paper there are only three main divis ions . - 31 -delegated authority of the Director of Welfare, in authorizing expenditures under the Social Assistance Act ( i . e . Social Allowances) and under the Assistant Director of Welfare i n matters of personnel,, of f ice , administration, s ta t i s t ic s and transportation. In the d i s t r i c t s of each region,, the d i s t r i c t supervisors gave face to face supervision to the socia l work-ers In the d i s t r ic t and municipal offices assigned to them. They also sanctioned, expenditure at the d i s t r i c t l eve l and f u l f i l l e d the teaching function necessary to. maintain work, standards. F ina l ly came the f i e l d social workers, who were the operational personnel "per se" and were- located i n both d i s t r i c t and municipal off ices . The former carried out the generalized services offered by the region, the l a t t e r , the 3 work involved In socia l assistance programs only. It was recognized that since the region was the instrument by which services were to be brought to the people, inter-regional communications would be a prime factor i n the designing of these uni t s . Natural, areas, travel routes and geographical and physical barriers were a l l significant to regional disposit ion. In general, therefore, the natural regions: of the province were used to fix. boundary l ines . Across the lower half of the province,, four such natural areas l i e side by side, Vancouver Island, the lower mainland andl adjacent coastline, the Kamloops-Okanagan Lake Area,, and the Ttootenays. As reference to the appended map w i l l indicate, these areas were chosen as the bases for. Regions I to IV. " 3 Summarized-from'the Social-Welfare Branch Annual  Report, 19.47,. p . Q9, 1948.,, pp.29-30. - 22 -The remaining; vast, northern, area of the province was con-stituted. Region. V . i t can he noted that, the smaller regions correspond roughly with the denser areas of population of the lower- province and the one large region with the l i g h t l y populated upper reaches. This latter uni t , covering as i t does,, well over half the provincial area, cannot be said to correspond to a natural region. However, i t may claim a unity of sorts by virtue of the trans—provincial branch of the Canadian National Railway from Prince Rupert to Jasper and the bus and r a i l connections from Prince George south to Quesnel and Williams. Lake. Within i t s vast extent, how-ever, are several v i r t u a l l y isolated d i s t r ic t s ; notably the Peace River area, which is properly a "region" i n i t s own r ight . Ai r transportation has lessened some of the d i f f i -cult ies of this out-size northern unit but It Is evident that communications s t i l l present great d i f f i cu l t i e s which, w i l l Increase as the population grows. The lower mainland area, Region I I , contains over a th i rd of the provincial population but yet compares favour-ably i n size with the other regions of the southern province. This dispreponderance of population and potential work, load places an undue s tra in upon the administrative machinery of this region. Undoubtedly the factor of population density was not considered suff ic ient ly In the or ig ina l regional disposition, possibly for reasons (e .g . , lack of personnel), beyond the control of the aaminlstration at the time. Within each region, the f i e l d administration - 3 3 -operated to apply the general services of the administration. At present there are five d i s t r i c t offices located i n each region with the exception of Region V where there are s ix . This number of offices i s not part of a fixed plan* SFew offices are opened wherever population increases and demand for services require them. With these provisions for decentralization, the general administration hoped to eliminate extended central-f i e l d communication l ines and to plant senior l iason personnel effectively close to the municipalit ies. It i s also worthy of particular note that the movement of the supervisors from the categorical divisions to the generalized f i e l d was well designed to abort the problem of the divisions splitt ing; the f i e l d by overoontrolling I t In the Interests of particular services. Decentralization therefore seemed to offer the hope of ending special ist control of the f i e l d . In so trans-ferring supervision from the divisions out to the f i e l d , an important change was made In the status of each supervisor. Previously, each had been a special i s t attached to a particu-l a r d iv i s ion . How with decentralization and the supervisory movement to the f i e l d , each supervisor became,, through necess-i t y , a generallst charged with a l l services. The planned result was an effective weakening of the categorical influence of the divisions since they were not now to be consulted in. the ordinary course of operations. Their posit ion was des-igned to be advisory, both to the f i e l d and to the general administration. - 34 -Qnce again though, the gains obtained from the decentralization were not a l l clear ones. Needless to say, such a change was not made without strain,., both on the qual-i t y of the supervision and on the supervisory personnel them-selves* Whereas before, the supervisor's concern had been with the leg i s la t ion and regulations of a particular service ( I . e* child welfare) and the professional principles approp-riate to that, service, her concern now was with the leg i s-lat ion and regulations of a l l services, plus the professional principles associated with them. She had also now the manage-ment of a district, office to divert her attentions. I n i t i a l l y at least , what decentralization "gained on the swings" i t " lost on the roundabouts". What was gained In communications was los t i n standards. Perhaps under: the circumstances this ?;as a l l that could be hoped for . Obviously however, the decentralized structure which had been set up was also under obligation to cope with other problems, than communications, notably the "treatment" vs. "non-treatment" problem and the functional vs. geographi-cal basis of organization which was minimized but not com-pletely eliminated, since divisions s t i l l existed. The solv-ing of these lat ter problems has proven a lengthy matter i n -volving transformations which are s t i l l going on at present and which threaten to go on for some time to come. Deputy Minister Director of Welfare Assistant Director Child Welfare D i v i s i o n 'Family Service D i v i s i o n Old Age Pension Board Boys I n d u s t r i a l School G i r l s I n d u s t r i a l School Vancouver Island Lower Mainland Okanagan Kootenay Northern Chart of the General Administration, Divisions and Regions of the Welfare Branch, Department of Health and Welfare. CHAPTER III DELEGATION TG THE REGION - SERVICES In deciding to disperse the centres of administra-tion and to employ regions, to carry out f i e l d operations, the heads of the welfare brach presented themselves with a series of wholly new problems which were more purely administrative. These revolved around the question of authority. The new system, (counting the central office as a single unit) now contained six units where authority was to be concentrated. The task of the central office was to control these scattered units, of responsibi l i ty so that each could operate most eff-ect ively, as a distance from headquarters, without pul l ing out of the l a t ter ' s orbit altogether. The problem somewhat resembled an. exercise i n physics, a balancing of centripetal and centrifugal forces.. In administrative phrasing, the ingredients which the executive had to juggle to achieve such balance were "delegations of authority" and "controls over authority". Expressed differently these reduced, to "how much authority sha l l the central office delegate to the f i e l d , how much control shal l i t continue to exercise over the f i e ld and how shall the delegations be made?" Needless to say the - 36 -solutions- to these technical problems are crucial to the proper operation of any decentralized, structure. Moreover solutions are not simple to obtain. I f the Scyl la of too much control i s successfully avoided, the Charybdis of ex-cessive regional autonomy may be encountered. Many adminis-trations have fa i led at this very point. To this problem: the executives of the welfare admin-i s trat ion devised specific solutions. As stated, the "how" of delegating consisted of erecting regional units, staffed with f i e l d workers and supervisors and headed up by a single-responsible administrator entrusted with the stewardship of his particular region. Hiw powers were to l i e i n the making of operational decisions.of broad character which were form-erly the responsibi l i ty of the divis ions, i n controlling f inancial disbursements for services and i n liason with organ-ized municipalit ies . His authorities were in turn to be subject to post-auditing by the general administration and to the regulations and policies issued by that headquarters. His. major function as a member, of the f i e l d force was to accept authority and responsibil ity to make decisions i n the f i e ld so that the flow of work over vast areas might be speeded up. The next question to be answered was. "how much authority should be given to the regional head?" The solu-tion to this question as supplied by the general administra-tion requires an examination of the most important transfers of authority from, central office to the regions, as well, as the amount and kind of restraints and checks set up by head-- 37 -quarters to control the f i e l d . In other words a technical survey of the structure of the administration i s required. A logical, starting place i s provided by those transfers associated with services. Delegations of authority. Services, to people — the end-product of the organization — are the sole excuse for administration of any sort. In this sense the degree of authority over services delegated by central office to the region represents a f a i r l y accurate gauge of the extent of the decentralization actually employed. Fa i l ing this direct concern with the " rea l " work of the administration, the re-gion head becomes something akin to an on-the-spot trouble-shooter or manager. He is not an integral part of the pro-duction machine but an external attendant who sees that i t runs properly. This i s not. to deny that the attendant func-t ion has Its proper place among the duties of any administra-t ion , f i e l d or headquarters. It merely serves to point up the fact that, to achieve, f u l l effectiveness and speed the flow of work, the device of decentralizing authority must include authority over services as well as managerial auth-or i ty over f i e l d a c t i v i t i e s . In. this respect the regional administrator i n the Social Welfare Branch has not yet re-ceived the responsibi l i t ies he was designed to receive by the decentralized plan of 1946.. It Is true that the administrator of the region acts i n an indirect or managerial capacity for a l l services projected into his region by the divisions^ He oversees with " 1 For complete l i s t of services implemented by the f i e l d services see Appendix A . - 38 -his supervisory personnel the f i e l d ac t iv i t i e s related to chi ld welfare, family services and pensions and old age pen-sions which together constitute the main services of the administration. He also, directs local office management, sees to the proper location of personnel, provides transport-ation and i n general makes i t possible for. f i e l d personnel to provide services to cl ients i n an effective and efficient manner. It i s extremely significant however that the region-a l head has direct authority over, and responsibil i ty for , only two services, namely socia l allowances granted to unem-ployed unemployables and the family case-work services. A l l others remain par t i a l ly or wholly centralized. As has been, suggested, the machinery of decentral-ization,, once set up, Ideally should be used to Its fu l les t capacities If i t i s r ea l ly to do the job for which It i s designed, ( i . e.^  to remove deta i l from headquarters and im-prove communications). The welfare administration violates this conception by retaining, centralized services i n a de-centralized structure. Examining: the major services i n turn, the pattern of delegations to the regions i s manifestly i n -complete. Services S t i l l Centralized. The Child Welfare Divi s ion , which provides children's services Is one d iv i s ion that, remains par t i a l ly centralized. This d iv i s ion , one of the earliest organized welfare administrations In the pro-vince operated as highly centralized structure after amal-gamation with other units had taken place. When the regions - 39 -were devised to disperse the mounting load of operations from, central office to the f i e l d , the divis ion participated only p a r t i a l l y . Supervision of cases was delegated to the regions but very l i t t l e else? The reasons behind this, non-participation in the decentralization of services extend deeply in the h i s tor ica l development of chi ld welfare i n the province. Prior to. amal-gamation this d iv i s ion was. a professional service employing trained social workers In i t s f i e l d staff and embracing the principles of prevention and treatment as being essential to a good chi ld welfare program. As a service, i t obtained the advantages of co-ordination with other services when amalgamation took place i n 1942. I t also received the bene-f i t s of a more comprehensive f i e l d force. Although the pro-fessional training- of this f i e l d force was considerably re-duced, this disadvantage was minimized by the retention at d iv i s ional head offices of supervision of the f i e l d . In this way the divis ion could ensure that i t s supervisors, at least , were trained personnel, well, acquainted with profess-ional techniques of treatment. With decentralization, how-ever, and the movement of supervision to the f i e l d , this safeguard was lo s t . The d iv i s ion therefore, held back 2 The following; are the powers retained by the div i s ion: 1. Authority to apprehend, children for their protection 2. Authority to admit children to non-ward care. 3. Authority to rescind committals: under the Protec- t ion Act . 4. Responsibility for submission of f i n a l reports and recommendations to the Court in adoption cases. 5. Responsibility for disbursing support collections under the Children, of Unmarried Parents Act. 6.. Responsibility for making reports to the courts on custody of children's applications. 7. Payment of a l l accounts for children In care. Social Welfare Branch, Annual Report. 194.7, p. 1 4 . specific controls, over the operations of i t s services, which require the f i e l d to report to the divis ion before It can proceed with certain operations, notably the apprehending of children, for their protection and the rescinding of such committals. The placing of children for adoption i s s imi l -ar ly controlled* In general, crucial operations involving the whole futures and future well-being of children seem to have been retained under d iv i s iona l control . In withholding these controls, i n spite of the gen-eral movement toward decentralization and i t s benefits, the divis ion has underscored the principle that childrens' ser-vices, at least , should be professionally supervised and should be aimed at the highest levels of treatment and rehab-i l i t a t i o n . At the same time, by so doing, i t has stated, in effect, that the supervision provided in the d i s t r ic t offices and by the regional administrators of the decentralized, struc-ture was not of suff ic iently high calibre to entrust with the complete authority over chi ld welfare services. In the face of the facts,, at the time of decentralization and since, this statement was correct. As suggested, the movement of super-vision to the f i e ld added tremendously to the responsibi l i t ies of the individual supervisor. She now became a "generalist" supervisor and a d i s t r i c t administrator instead of a special-i s t i n one service. It was not surprising that the average supervisor would be unable to give the same individual atten-tion to each case as previously. In addition, the f i n a l authorities in the f i e l d , the regional, administrators were, - 41 -without exception, inexperienced in child welfare and with one exception "non-professionals", recruited from, the former unemployment r e l i e f service. The child welfare divis ion took the attitude that these administrators were not equipped to assume f inal authority over the complicated services for children. For these reasons, the divis ion refused to part-icipate in the complete decentralization envisioned by the general administration. Instead i t forced a compromise of centralization and decentralization which s t i l l exists today, m doing so the divis ion weighed the importance of technic-a l ly good administrative structure against the importance of a professionally sound child welfare program and decided i n favor of the l a t ter . It was able to do so by strong legis lat ive backing. Acts dating back many years confer on the Superintendent of Child Welfare ( i . e . , the head of the child welfare divis ion) , statutory powers which make that o f f i c i a l independent, i n certain aspects, of any authority i n the welfare branch, even of the chief executive. They make possible the anomaly of a divis ion of the central office matching in authority the chief executive of the whole administration. These powers are so great that In relation to decentralization the Super-intendent of Child Welfare has been able to say: "The authorities and responsibi l i t ies vested in the Superintendent of Child Welfare under our three pieces of children's leg i s la t ion - Protec- t ion of Children Act, and Children of Unmarried  Parents Act - are essential-and basic to a good chi ld welfare program. They could not and should not be weakened by a complete decentralization. - 42 -We therefore delegated to the f i e l d those duties and responsibi l i t ies ?/hich tend to simplify and improve service to the cl ient , and retained in Divisional office those responsibi l i t ies and authorities we believe profide the necessary safeguards to an over-a l l chi ld welfare program'.'*5 This statement leaves no doubt that the division in question has not only the desire to remain centralized but the power as well* The administrative effect of this stand by the child welfare division, has been to prevent the f u l l Imple-mentation of decentralization* It i s easi ly seen therefore that in the public welfare adminis.tratio.n, the problem of delegating authorities over services to the regional heads i s not a simple one of balancing authority with controls* It i s instead, an extremely complex one involving i n success-ion , factors of his tor ica l development, principles of treat-ment and rehabilitation,, professional training for personnel, categorical vs . generalized services, and functional vs . geographical bases of organization* The technical problem of balancing control v/ith authority seems far overshadowed by these more basic considerations* The second major service which has not been dele-gated to the authority of the regional administrator, i s that, of old age pensions. At present a l l applications for pensions must be approved by the divis ion office i n Vancouver. This means that i n spite of the adoption of decentralization as a general pattern by the welfare administration, this d iv i s ion, In common with the child welfare d iv i s ion , does <3 Social Welfare Branch, Annual Report, 1947, p . 14 - 4 3 -not participate f u l l y . Its reasons for not doing so are, however, substantially different from the child welfare divisions attempt to preserve professional standards of treatment. An immediate reason may be found i n the regulations governing the Old Age and Blind Pensions Act. These were devised i n 1.927 and were federal i n or igin since the Act i s a national one. The aim of this legis lat ion was to permit the provinces to administer the program: of pensions set up under the Act but at the same time to allow sufficient, fed-era l control, to ensure that the actual provision of pensions to the aged was more or less uniform throughout the country, in safeguarding these alms, federal legis lat ion specified, the formation of provincial boards* which would control, a l l pen-sion grants and hear appeals for pensions not approved. These regulations, i n effect, permitted a decentralized admin-i s trat ion to be set up on the federal level but ensured at the.same time that the provinces would be forced to adminis-ter the service central ly . The old age pension thus remains very much a categorical service because of the effect of res-t r ic t ive federal l eg i s l a t ion . Even more basic than federal l eg i s la t ion imposing •regulations on provincial services is the fact that the pre-sent method of federal financing encourages the formation of categories, which then must be centrally controlled for nat-ional uniformity. The old "perennial" of federal-provincial f inancial agreements plays a determining role i n the whole 44 -problem.. Since no broad agreements exist between the two levels of government regarding support for welfare programs, individual agreements must be made for individual services. These are specific grants for specific purposes and following the practice usually associated with such grants, specific ways of spending them are imposed by the federal government, with the results seen above i n old age pensions. If broader j, more f lexible financial agreements could be arranged for the provinces, the emphasis an categories and restr ict ions could then be dropped by the federal government. In such provinces as B r i t i s h Columbia,, a more complete decentralization would then be possible i f this were thought advisable. It i s sufficient for present purposes to state that for these reasons, authority over old age and blind pensions has not yet been delegated to the regional administrator of the decentralized administration. This o f f i c i a l controls only the managerial aspects of this service, inasmuch as i t i s his responsibi l i ty to see that his f i e l d personnel handle this service to best advantage. Any further delegation would require a l terat ion of federal l eg i s la t ion affecting nine pro-vinces which seems unlikely for the present. In a similar but less complicated manner,, Mothers' Allowances, a service of the Family Div i s ion , i s centrally controlled because of legis lat ive restr ict ions i n the author-iz ing act, which place responsibi l i ty with the Director of Welfare. Further delegation i n regard, to Mothers' Allowances are however, not. hindered by federal specifications since the - 45 -the Act i s provincial i n o r i g in . As a. matter of record, mothers' allowances are coming into disuse and are being 4 gradually replaced by the more flexible social allowances. They therefore do not constitute a deep-seated problem to decentralization as do the chi ld welfare and o ld age pension services. It seems l i k e l y that their use w i l l be entirely discontinued i n the near- future, thus avoiding the necessity for altering the legis lat ion* Decentralized Services. In contrast to these cen-tra l ized services, the administration of Social Allowances, authorized by the Social Assistance Act of 1945, has been completely delegated to the f ie ld . . The regional administrator i s solely responsible for the granting of allowances in his region. Central office controls are retained only i n the way of s tat i s t ics and periodical case audits. The divis ion ( in this case the Family Division) remains as a consultative authority i n d i f f i cu l t cases* However, . essential control Is placed with the regional administrator and i t Is he who f i n -a l ly authorizes or prevents the granting of allowances. The d e t a i l of th i s authority i s worthy of note since i t suggests the intended pattern for future decentralization of services which may devolve upon the region. Allowances are i n i t i a l l y authorized at the d i s t r i c t office leve l by case-work supervisors. A complete record of a l l such authorizations (or cancellations) are then forwarded monthly from d i s t r i c t offices to the regional administrator's of f ice . Here they are reviewed and receive f ina l authorization or adjustment. 4 Rasmussph, 17. " A n Evaluation of • Mothers' Allowances In Br i t i sh Columbia", Vancouver,B.C. 1950, Chap. IV. - 46 -Total regional increases are then sent to the accounting-department of the Branch for f ina l recording. The virtues of the system, are evident. The method of authorization i s simple, the tota l work, load is divided among five regions and special circumstances can he dealt with d i rect ly and quickly by the administrator i n his region. Most importantly, the authorization process i s not hampered by the necessity of central office decision and the central office is, i n turn not hampered by the necessity of making: these decisions. I n i t i a l authorization can be given at once at the d i s t r i c t l eve l by the supervisor familiar with the case and confirmed quickly at the regional l e v e l . Only those cases requiring; specialist; Interpretation need be referred to the d iv i s ion i n central of f ice . In contrast with the situation prior to delegation In which one o f f i c i a l , the Director of Welfare passed on a l l authorizations, the present system has obvious adminlst r a t ional advantages of speed and equality of work-load. For the basic family case, work service offered by the family service d iv i s ion , decentralization i s almost com-5 plete . However, the regional administrator occupies an un-usual position i n regard to these services. Being, i n most instances, a general administrator rather than a profession-a l l y trained social worker, effectual control of family case-work i s exercised almost completely by the professionally & Family service i s o f f i c i a l l y defined as "that group of cases...where case-work (counselling) services are required and given.,, but: where the problem i s not primarily f inancia l need, nor does i t f a l l within the areas of need for which statutory or specialized provision has been made." This def-i n i t i o n i s made for s t a t i s t i c a l purposes to avoid duplications. Family services i n practice, often accompany other specialized or statutory services. - 47 -trained, d i s t r i c t supervisors within his region. Extraordin-ary problems are referred hack, to the family services div-i s ion which acts on a consultative basis but, essentially, the regional administrator assumes only a managerial ro le in re lat ion to family services. In time, It i s hoped that the development of. professional qualifications in the regional administrators w i l l enable them to participate more closely i n the administration and direction, of the family services. At the present time, although authority has been delegated to the regional administrators, they are not In a position to exercise i t effectively because of lack of professional t ra in-ing . Reviewing these services and the degree of decen-tra l izat ion they Imply, It may readily be seen that although the Social Welfare Branch set out to Implement a decentraliz-ed system of administration, the delegation of authority to the f i e l d In regard to services i s by no means complete. In three services out of five discussed, such transfers have not occurred in the ful lest sense, and in only two has f u l l authority been delegated. It is not amiss to emphasize that In not one Instance of fa i lure to decentralize has the purely technical problem of balancing delegation with control been the major factor. In those services which have been dele-gated to the authority of the regional administrators, these details seem to have been executed to the satisfaction of the general administration and of the demands of the services. Di f f i cu l t ie s far more extensive than mere administrative - 48 -"bugs" have very evidently assailed the structure which was designed to eliminate the communications bottleneck, of the, old centralized organization. In the one service, that of chi ld welfare, the tradit ion that emphasized professional treatment services of highest calibre has asserted i t s e l f suff ic iently to pre-vent the complete real izat ion of decentralization. This has occurred because decentralization did not provide a suff ic-ient ly high standard of supervision. In the second service of old age pensions, a similar blocking of decentralization has occurred but In this case for reasons of restrictive, f inancial and legis lat ive arrangements between the federal and provincial, levels . In a third, service, that of mother's allowances, centralization has continued to exist for no other reason than the existence of an anachronistic piece of res tr ict ive leg i s l a t ion . Presumably some d i f f i cu l ty would be encountered in the alteration of this legis lat ion and since the use of the service i s gradually being discontinued, i t was perhaps the easier course to allow i t to lapse rather than attempt to change i t . To these bastions of centralization i n a professedly decentralized structure may be added the fact that the regional administrators have not been, able to assume an effective role in regard to the decentralized family case-work services because of their lack of professional soc ia l work tra ining. This lack may therefore be added to those considerations which at the moment are impeding the adminis-trations plan for dispersing authority to the f i e l d . - 49 -To the reasons already considered for not dele-gating- more authority to the regions may be added a very practical-, though not so serious, consideration. Even though legis lat ive and personnel deficiencies were to be remedied, a very rea l obstacle to a complete, eff icient decentraliz-ation would s t i l l remain in the present physical structure of the regions. To date the regions have had transferred to them complete authority over two- services, only. With these 6 alone the regional heads are hard pressed. The fact appears that they ?rould be unable to accept further delegations, of authority i f these were offered to them. Five regional div-isions are p la inly not enough to absorb a- total decentraliz-ation of services, i t therefore i s apparent, that the size of the present regions would have to be reduced and the num-ber of regional heads correspondingly Increased, before fur-ther transfers of authority could safely occur. Controls Over Authority, incomplete though they may be, i f the central office confers powers of action and decision to the outer regions, i t must also place res t r ic -tions on the use of these powers or the unity of the organiz-ation w i l l dissolve and the regions become independent. These restr ict ions are given the administrational term "controls" . Chief of these i s the central office control main-tained through f i e ld consultants. Three consultants, who are professional social workers, tour the f i e l d on behalf of the central, of f ice , checking standards of work and dealing with special problems i n the realm of services. Their function 6 The percentage of case turnover in Social Allowances i s extremely high. The Administrator of Region I I reported the turnover for Jan.. 1950 to be 2 3 ^ ^ ^ - 50 -i s to, "trouble-shoot" the whole range of services from chi ld welfare to old age pensions. More than that, these central office representatives in the f i e l d perform one of the most delicate and d i f f i cu l t tasks i n the administration. Their function i s rea l ly two-fold. They are both inspectors and helpers of the f i e l d service. As top-ranking special ists , not only must they advise the f i e ld but guage i t s standards of operations as wel l . The task i s not so obvious as i t might appear. The question of headquarters specialists oper-ating within the f i e l d has plagued administration since the time of the Roman Empire. On the one hand, the special con-sultant must be friendly counselor and on the other, object-ive observer and reporter. He must walk on an extremely high fence which has not always been successfully negotiated in the public welfare system. At the time that regions were f i r s t used and super-vis ion began to come from the local offices instead of head-quarters divisions, i t was realized that the inexperienced loca l supervisors needed sk i l l ed direction and advice i n re-gard to the numerous services which had now become their responsibi l i ty . Headquarters therefore appointed three ex-perienced personnel to act as chief or regional supervisors and these were assigned to the three regions which were most heavily populated. These supervisors had numerous duties 7 but essentially they were .to act as experts on social matters. The creation of these positions dealt effectively with the 7 The duties of the Regional Supervisors have been l i s ted as follows: 1. To act as chief supervisors to the d i s t r ic t supervisors 2 . To make decisions on problems of pre-division status. 3 . To act as a l ink between the f i e l d and the divis ions. 4 . To conduct audits of case work standards. - 51 -problem: of giving experienced, supervision to the regions which required i t most. But the scheme was not successful.. In spite of the, fact that such overall supervision was urgent-l y required in the f i e l d , the appointing of chief supervisors to specif i c . regions introduced, into each region concerned a second powerful executive of a special ist type. The regions then, presented the picture of administrations with v i r tua l ly two executives, one an administrative general manager, the other a special ist on services. Theoretically this arrange-ment should have worked wel l . I f the special ist stayed close to service problems the regional administrator- could handle more general and less professional problems without d i f f i c u l t y . But i t was soon found that problems did not separate them-selves so neatly. Inevitably confl ict ensued between the re-gional administrator and the regional supervisor as to which one, of them was to be the f i n a l regional authority. The situation T/as not c lear ly i n favour of the one over the other. Being; a professional person, the regional supervisor without doubt, was often i n the strongest posi t ion, when a predominat-e ly professional case-work problem arose. At the same time, the regional, administrator was o f f i c i a l l y responsible for the management of his region and was therefore accountable for a l l decisions affecting i t . The claims and counter-claims of the specia l i s t representing the divisions and the generallst rep-resenting the chief executive were never sat i s factor i ly settled and the position of regional supervisor was eventually? abolished. - 52 -As: a result of this experience, the positions of f i e l d consultants have since been established to meet the control requirements of the central of f ice . These dif fer from the regional supervisors In not being appointed to specific regions. Also they are d irect ly responsible to the general administration and report back to their- superiors and to the regional administrators rather than make major f i e l d decisions, on their own. The actual change i n duties i s suggested by the t i t l e "consultant". In this ro le , these roving headquarters personnel move throughout a l l regions advising regional administrators and d i s t r i c t supervisors a l ike , reporting on standards and extraordinary problems to headquarters. In a l l of these ways they service as control agents for the central office and help to keep the various regions of the administration, operating i n unison. As an I l lustrat ion of their work the following is typical.. During the course of her travels, one of the f i e ld consultants may come across a case that i s marginal, that i s , i t f a l l s just outside standard regulations. The case, how-ever, may show definite need, Y/hlch from a general interpre-tation of the legislation,, the provincial services should meet. This case is noted by the consultants and should fur-ther cases of a similar nature appear they w i l l be discussed at a consultants r conference which i s held, regularly. If there appears to be a consistent pattern of such marginal cases the consultants may then refer them to the planning - 53- -council of the central office for consideration. Eventually i f these cases seem to just i fy the change, an alteration Is made in the regulations so that such cases w i l l he covered by them. One of the important tasks of the consultants i s to give a "controlled" f l e x i b i l i t y to the regulations affec-t ing services. It Is their job to adjust the services of the administration to extraordinary need. This i s an import-ant function but the consultants are res tr ic ted and hampered i n i t by some of the more r i g i d l y regulated services such as old age pensions and mothers' allowances. On the other hand they are able to operate effectively with the more modern legis la t ion such as the Social Allowance Act. In spite of this drawback, the f i e l d consultants by emphasizing the consultant and helping aspects of their position have achieved their control aims with more success than did the regional supervisors. By interfering as l i t t l e as possible with the direct line of command from the central office to the f i e l d they have achieved their twin functions of advising and controlling f i e l d operations:. Even so, the present: administration of the welfare department admits that the ideal state of affairs has not been reached. In effect, f i e l d consultants at large within the regions- represent headquarters special i s t personnel "peering" over the shoulder of the regional administrator as he works. No matter how diplomatically this, is done, at. times i t w i l l appear as interference.. This idea l solution - 54. -f o r e s e e n by p r e s e n t a d m i n i s t r a t i v e heads, i s a g a i n a t w o f o l d matter of time and t r a i n i n g . I t i s hoped t h a t with e x p e r i e n c e , the d i s t r i c t s u p e r v i s o r s w i l l become capable o f h a n d l i n g most s p e c i a l i s t problems: a t the d i s t r i c t l e v e l . To t h i s end,, the pr e s e n t f i e l d c o n s u l t a n t s a re g i v -i n g s p e c i a l t r a i n i n g , t o the d i s t r i c t s u p e r v i s o r s . A further, s t e p toward e l i m i n a t i n g the f i e l d c o n s u l t a n t s I s planned i n f u t u r e appointments of r e g i o n a l administrators.. It. i s hoped to appoint p e r s o n n e l t o t h e s e p o s i t i o n s , who combine both s p e c i a l i s t and g e n e r a l i s t q u a l i f i c a t i o n s . A d e f i n i t e attempt w i l l be made to r e c r u i t these r a r e I n d i v i d u a l s who combine a d m i n i s t r a t i v e a b i l i t y with, p r o f e s s i o n a l case-work, t r a i n i n g and approach.. In these two ways i t i s hoped t h a t the head-q u a r t e r s personnel, i n the f i e l d may be e l i m i n a t e d and w i t h them, the d i f f i c u l t i e s which are so o f t e n a s s o c i a t e d w i t h such forms of c o n t r o l . Such an e l i m i n a t i o n w i l l mark a def-i n i t e s w i t c h i n the type of r e g u l a t i o n employed by the cen-t r a l o f f i c e . I n p l a c e of d i r e c t i n s p e c t i o n of the f i e l d , more r e l i a n c e w i l l be p l a c e d on the t r a i n i n g , o f key personnel w i t h i n the r e g i o n a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n to maintain, u n i f o r m stand-ards and f u r n i s h headquarters w i t h adequate r e p o r t s and i n f o r -mation. I n d i s c u s s i n g f i e l d c o n s u l t a n t s o n l y one of the many methods of r e g i o n a l c o n t r o l by the c e n t r a l o f f i c e has been i n v e s t i g a t e d but i n so doing the major answer t o the q u e s t i o n "how much c o n t r o l over s e r v i c e s s h a l l be r e t a i n e d by the cen-t r a l o f f i c e ? " has. been c o n s i d e r e d . I n s h o r t t h i s answer has been t h a t to c o n t r o l s e r -- 55 -v i c e s the c e n t r a l o f f i c e makes use of i t s own r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s , the f i e l d c o n s u l t a n t s . The use of t h i s type of c o n t r o l has giv e n t r o u b l e I n the past but a mo d i f i e d form now operates more s u c c e s s f u l l y to review f i e l d o perations without I n t e r -f e r i n g too much wit h the chain of command. I t i s not f e l t t h at the co n s u l t a n t s represent the u l t i m a t e form of control.. Rather, f i e l d personnel themselves, when s u f f i c i e n t l y expert, w i l l represent the best form of a s s u r i n g h i g h standards of work, by t h e i r adherence to t h e i r own p r o f e s s i o n a l codes and goals. R e l a t i n g ; the answers of the two t e c h n i c a l questions about "delegations of a u t h o r i t y " and " c o n t r o l s over a u t h o r i t y " i t i s evident t h a t the incomplete answer to the former has been i n f l u e n c e d by f a c t o r s beyond the p u r e l y a d m i n i s t r a t i v e . On the other hand the answer to the question regarding con-t r o l s shows a more normal a p p l i c a t i o n of theory t o the prob-lem of c o n t r o l l i n g a decentralized, a d m i n i s t r a t i o n . I n b r i e f , d e l e g a t i o n o ^ r a u t h o r i t y over s e r v i c e s "went wrong" because of external, f a c t o r s o f p r o f e s s i o n a l i s m and p r o v i n c i a l - f e d e r a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s but c o n t r o l over the a u t h o r i t i e s delegated succeeded i n a normal f a s h i o n . CHAPTER IV DELEGATION TO THE REGION - FIELD MANAGEMENT Effective decentralization demands a balance bet-ween authority and control in areas other than services; to people. For convenience these can be grouped under the term " f i e l d management". They include personnel practices, budget formulation, accounting,, procedures, and communications. As a group they form the auxiliary or secondary ac t iv i t ie s which keep the total organization i n running order and make possible the main, goal of offering services to people.. A decentralized system of administration i s part ic-ular ly suited to handle auxil iary f i e l d operations eff ic ient-l y . The local office problems of a wide-spread administra-tion are after a l l , local concerns best dealt with in their proper context. Although the central office may wish to know accurately what has been done In the regions about cer-tain problems, i t i s obviously well advised to be as free as possible from, devising petty answers to petty problems which In the aggregate, could be overwhelming to a headquarters. Decentralization enables an executive to r ise above loca l deta i l i n just such a fashion. Strategically delegated auth-or i t i e s to the f i e l d , together with good controls, leave the - 57 -c e n t r a l o f f i c e i n I t s b e s t p o s i t i o n i n regard, t o t h e f i e l d , namely, t h a t o f a checker and g e n e r a l o b s e r v e r . At the same t i m e , the r e g i o n s a r e l e f t f r e e t o meet l o c a l problems on a l o c a l b a s i s . A g a i n the v i t a l key t o t h e d e c e n t r a l i z a t i o n i s t h e b a l a n c e between a u t h o r i t y and c o n t r o l a c h i e v e d by head-q u a r t e r s . F i e l d a c t i v i t i e s must not be a l l o w e d t o d e t e r i o r -a t e i n t o autonomous o p e r a t i o n s . Nor on the o t h e r hand s h o u l d c e n t r a l o f f i c e c o n t r o l s be p e r m i t t e d t o cramp f i e l d o p e r a t i o n s . A c o n s i d e r a t i o n of p e r s o n n e l p r a c t i c e s , budget f o r m u l a t i o n , f i s c a l and a c c o u n t i n g p o l i c i e s and communications w i l l i l l u s -t r a t e t h e b a l a n c e o b t a i n e d i n the p u b l i c w e l f a r e o r g a n i z a t i o n . P e r s o n n e l P r a c t i c e s . A u t h o r i t i e s o v e r p e r s o n n e l are d i v i d e d between the c e n t r a l o f f i c e and t h e f i e l d on what appears t o be a good b a s i s o f c a p a b i l i t y . For example, r e -c r u i t m e n t o f p e r s o n n e l , which would be d i f f i c u l t f o r t h e r e -g i o n s t o do, i s c a r r i e d on by h e a d q u a r t e r s . On t h e o t h e r hand work performance e v a l u a t i o n s are done b y t h e r e g i o n s i n c e i t I s the u n i t most f a m i l i a r w i t h the s t a n d a r d s o f work b e i n g a c h i e v e d . C o n s i d e r i n g f i r s t the c e n t r a l o f f i c e a u t h o r i t i e s , p e r s o n n e l s u p p l y i s the d i r e c t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of t h e A s s i s -t a n t D i r e c t o r of ?7elfare. T h e o r e t i c a l l y , s i n c e p r o v i n c i a l government employment i s c o n t r o l l e d by a c i v i l s e r v i c e comm-i s s i o n s e t up i n d e p e n d e n t l y of any department, a l l p e r s o n n e l s h o u l d be s u p p l i e d t o the departments by t h i s c o m m i s s i o n . However, because o f t h e s p e c i a l r e q u i r e m e n t s o f w e l f a r e p o s i -t i o n s i n t h e way o f p r o f e s s i o n a l t r a i n i n g , a p p l i c a n t s a r e - 58 -f i r s t s c r e e n e d by t h e A s s i s t a n t D i r e c t o r o f W e l f a r e b e f o r e t h e i r a p p o i n t m e n t s a r e c o n f i r m e d by t h e c i v i l s e r v i c e comm-i s s i o n . T h i s c o - o p e r a t i v e arrangement a t t e m p t s t o meet t h e p a r t i c u l a r p r o f e s s i o n a l r e q u i r e m e n t s o f t h e w e l f a r e a d m i n i s -t r a t i o n , i n a d d i t i o n t o t h e g e n e r a l r e q u i r e m e n t s s e t up by the c i v i l s e r v i c e commission f o r a l l government e m p l o y e e s . W i t h i n b r o a d l i m i t s , the c e n t r a l o f f i c e I s r e s t r i c t e d b y the c o m m i s s i o n as t o t h e number o f p e r s o n n e l i t may e m p l o y . I t i s p o s s i b l e t o t a k e Issue w i t h s u c h a method o f r e c r u i t i n g . W h i l e l e s s s a t i s f a c t o r y a r r a n g e m e n t s e x i s t w i t h -i n the r e g u l a r c i v i l s e r v i c e c o m m i s s i o n r e g a r d i n g t h e r e c r u i t -ment o f p r o f e s s i o n a l o r s p e c i a l i s t p e r s o n n e l , no doubt the p r e s e n t c o u r s e i s j u s t i f i e d . However, i n most modern a d m i n i s -t r a t i o n s - , e i t h e r g o v e r n m e n t a l o r i n d u s t r i a l , t h e whole m a t t e r o f p e r s o n n e l , f r o m r e c r u i t m e n t t o r e t i r e m e n t , I s b e i n g h a n d -l e d by s p e c i a l i z e d s t a f f u n i t s . These a r e h e a d e d up b y t r a i n -e d p e r s o n n e l o f f i c e r s , b a c k e d up a n d a s s i s t e d i n t h e i r t a s k s by a l l t h e modern developments o f job c l a s s i f i c a t i o n and. p e r -s o n n e l p r a c t i c e s . The p o i n t h a r d l y needs t o be made t h a t s u c h a t a s k , which I s more s p e c i a l i z e d t h a n a c c o u n t i n g o r any o t h e r t e c h n i c a l s t a f f s e r v i c e , s h o u l d n o t b e made the d i r e c t r e s p o n s i b i l i t y o f a member o f t h e g e n e r a l a d m i n i s t r a -t i o n . N e c e s s a r y p r e s s u r e s s h o u l d be b r o u g h t to b e a r upon the c i v i l s e r v i c e c o m m i s s i o n to p r o v i d e such t r a i n e d s e r v i c e s or f a i l i n g t h i s a s e p a r a t e w e l f a r e u n i t s h o u l d be d e v e l o p e d to work i n c o n j u n c t i o n w i t h the c o m m i s s i o n . The p r e s e n t s i t u -a t i o n i s r e g a r d t o p e r s o n n e l i s a n a l o g o u s to an I n d u s t r i a l - 5 9 -•vice-president in charge of f ield operations also being, responsible for the provision of headquarters and field personnel. Staff appointments have tended increasingly to be 1 made from professionally trained applicants. This, trend has eliminated the need for a specially designed training program for a greater part of new personnel. However for new, untrained personnel, a period of in-service training; is provided. This consists of a three-month indoctrination period in which professional theories and the routines of services are taught and practice work: is done under super-vision. The program is under the direction of a training supervisor who is attached to the office of the Assistant Director of Welfare. This training office constitutes a central staff unit. The function of the training supervisor has also been enlarged to Include the development of a cen-tra l reference library and the publication of a monthly jour-nal for purposes of further personnel development in the f ie ld . When the new employee has been recruited and train-ed he comes next under the direction of the regional adminis-trator, since authorities over most of the remaining person-nel practices have been delegated to that of f ic ia l . For the first six months the worker receives a temporary appointment. At the end of that time his performance is evaluated by his district super-visor. This report is then submitted to the regional administrator who wi l l , on the basis of the evalua-1 Social Welfare Branch of the Department of Health and Welfare, Annual Report, 1948, p. 28r states that by 1948 two-thirds of personnel were professionally trained in social work. - 60 -t i o n , recommend t h a t the worker be g i v e n a permanent a p p o i n t -ment, or be c a r r i e d f o r a f u r t h e r p e r i o d as temporary s t a f f . T h i s recommendation, i s forwarded to c e n t r a l o f f i c e f o r auth-o r i z a t i o n and then i s submitted t o the c i v i l s e r v i c e commiss-i o n . I n t h i s e v a l u a t i n g p r o c e s s , the recommendation of the r e g i o n a l a d m i n i s t r a t o r c a r r i e s c o n s i d e r a b l e weight and f o r a l l p r a c t i c a l purposes the a u t h o r i t y f o r s u c h personnel e v a l -u a t i o n s has been delegated to the f i e l d . At the completion of one year i n the f i e l d the worker's performance i s a g a i n a u d i t e d by h i s Immediate super-v i s o r and. the r e p o r t submitted to the r e g i o n a l head who, i n the event of a f a v o u r a b l e e v a l u a t i o n , recommends the worker f o r a s t a t u t o r y i n c r e a s e i n s a l a r y . T h i s recommendation f o l l o w s the u s u a l channels to c e n t r a l o f f i c e through to the c i v i l s e r v i c e commission. An unfavourable recommendation f o l l o w s a s i m i l a r course. I n e i t h e r case, s p e c i f i c reasons, f o r an I n c r e a s e or a v/ithholdlng of an i n c r e a s e must be g i v e n . I n r e g a r d t o promotion, the r e g i o n a l a d m i n i s t r a t o r a g a i n i n i t i a t e s recommendations to the c e n t r a l o f f i c e . Promotion u s u a l l y f o l l o w s a s u b s t a n t i a l time i n the f i e l d on t h e part, of the worker thus g i v i n g the a d m i n i s t r a t o r an o p p o r t u n i t y to a c q u i r e p e r s o n a l knowledge of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s c a p a b i l i t -i e s . T h i s f i r s t - h a n d acquaintance i s supplemented by the u s u a l f o r m a l e v a l u a t i o n of the worker by his; s u p e r v i s o r . The l a t t e r is- I n t u r n , o f t e n f u r t h e r e n l a r g e d by dir e c t , con-s u l t a t i o n between t h e - r e g i o n a l a d m i n i s t r a t o r and the super-visor.. By these means an adequate assessment can be made of - SI the worker*s capabilities and progress i n general f i e l d work. A recommendation of promotion then being made, i t passes to the Assistant Director, to the Deputy Minister and with h i s f i n a l approval to the c i v i l service commission. Transfers of personnel from one office to another within a region or between regions are accomplished by the same moans and follow the same hierarchical channels for approval. It i s the aim of the administration to conduct an annual audit of each f i e l d worker. At the present stage of development this aim i s not being met for several reasons. These are, principally, lack of time on the part of f i e l d supervisors and the high mobility of the personnel, due to transfers and resignations. Nevertheless, a f a i r l y complete audit i s accomplished by the evaluations required as above, for permanent appointment, Increases i n salary, promotions and transfers. In addition to these formal evaluations, the f i e l d workers are necessarily in close working relationship with their respective d i s t r i c t supervisors and in this way a constant Informal audit i s carried on. As a further check on personnel performance, the f i e l d consultants whose func-tions were described i n the preceeding chapter, carry out case record audits at regular periods i n a l l d i s t r i c t offices. The performance standards of f i e l d personnel may thus be i n -directly reviewed i n the course of these audits. Considering the whole f i e l d of personnel practices a satisfactory balance of authorities retained and authorities delegated seems to have been achieved. With the generalized •a? - 62 -functions of recruitment and. training being retained by bead-quarters and the remaining "on the job* functions being trans-ferred to the f i e l d , a workable decentralization of author-i t i e s over personnel has been set up. The manner i n which headquarters handles i t s personnel functions does seem ques-tionable. Broadly speaking, however, each unit seems best f i t t ed to discharge the responsibi l i t ies assigned to i t . It seems hardly necessary to point up the controls exercised by headquarters over the f i e l d In relat ion to personnel. These consist mainly of control over recruiting and the f ina l authorizations given to regional recommendations. They appear well designed to guide f i e l d personnel act iv i t ies without unduly interfering; with or over-controll ing them. Budget Formulation. Overall budget formulation i s a central office responsibi l i ty . Nevertheless each region i s delegated the authority to submit individual estimates of regional requirements which are used to make up the main bud-get. With estimates originating i n the regions and subject only to headquarters approval, the major conditions of a balanced decentralization are present. The actual process In-volves the regional head preparing and submitting to central off ice an estimate of regional requirements for the coming year. This estimate Is dram up well i n advance (usually six months) of the provincial f i s c a l year which begins i n A p r i l , m the estimate are considered a l l the physical elements re-quired to maintain the region i n the f i e l d . These f a l l into two main categories, personnel and office plant. To obtain - 63 -personnel, tne regional head estimates from, his previous year's f i e l d service reports the work, loads occur ing- i n the various d i s t r ic t s of his region. If certain offices report consistent work loads beyond the capabil it ies of present staff, he requisitions additional personnel from the central office personnel officer and indicates the d i s t r i c t which re-quires reinforcement. This method is followed for both pro-fessional and c l e r i c a l requirements. The regional administrator must submit estimates not only for the maintenance of existing; offices and equip-ment but also for any new offices which may have to be opened within the forthcoming f i s c a l year. Existing; d i s t r i c t offices may require additions to their physical assets In the way of furniture, f i l i n g needs, increased space, additions to motor transport and so on. A l l these Items must be requisitioned and once obtained, a l l such plant Is the direct responsibil-i t y of the regional head. Current costs must also be l i s t ed , such as rentals . Mew offices may be required in certain dis-t r i c t s because of the increase of population and consequent demands for more intense f i e l d operations. The estimate also includes such new additions. The regional administrator is responsible for such f i e l d development and the location of new offices and general arrangements for space and leases are within his authority. However, close relations are maintain-ed with central office i n such matters. Since the regional estimates In general are concerned with personnel and office requirements they are submitted by the various regional ad-- 6 4 -ministrators to the Assistant Director who consolidates these estimates and presents a total f i e l d estimate to the Director' and Deputy Minister of Welfare. Viewing the tota l budget-making, process therefore, i t may be seen that, for his own particular area, the regional administrator exercises con-siderable control over the formulation of his section of the budget. He i s genuinely in a position to request from head-quarters what materials he feels the region requires. A l -though his request i s subject to central office review this seems only consistent with the demands of a unif ied admlnis^ trat ion. F i sca l and accounting- functions, as carried on with-in the region,, are restricted to. re l a t ive ly simple operations. Three major categories are represented under f i s ca l matters, expenditures in connection with services, current expenses of d i s t r i c t offices, and salaries . Social allowance expendit-ures are the sole service'disbursements under regional res-pons ib i l i ty . Payment of these allowances is made direct ly by the d i s t r i c t offices with the assistance of the loca l government agent who issues the allowance cheques. Similarly, accounting i s a d i s t r i c t office responsibility,, although as noted previously, a complete statement of case turnover- i n social allowances and expenditures involved is submitted monthly by each d i s t r i c t office to the regional administrator. In connection with social allowance expenditures, the central office examines d i s t r i c t office accounts once each year by means of an inspection team working from, the auditing unit - ' 6 5 -attached to headquarters. This team conducts a spot audit of allowance cases i n each d i s t r i c t , reviews the office operating; accounts and submits a report d irect ly to the Dir-ector of Welfare. This o f f i c i a l then notif ies the regional administrator of any discrepancies. In the event of necess-ary changes i n d i s t r i c t accounting practices the regional head may c a l l upon the audit unit to assist in making these corrections. Running costs in the d i s t r i c t offices for such items as repairs are held to a minimum by the device of re-quisitioning supplies from a central government supply agency. Di s t r ic t office accounts are kept for administrative or "housekeeping" services and these are included under the usual, central office audit. Salaries for personnel of a l l d i s t r i c t offices are handled by the regional administrator. His of f lee maintains f i l e d class i f icat ion data for a l l personnel and salary cheques are issued from regional, headquarters once each month. In a l l budget and f i sca l matters a clear pattern of authority and control balance i s apparent. The regions have been given the right to formulate the ir own estimates of need, keep their own books and pay their own. salaries. In the case of the decentralized service of social allowances, power to make payments has also been delegated. On the control side, head-quarters i n each case retains the right to authorize budget estimates and. to inspect accounts per iodical ly . These arrange-ments seem workable and sound» - 66 -Communications. Communications are not s t r i c t l y divis ible into f i e ld and headquarters authorities. They may be discussed in terms of channels (what routes does informa-tion travel) or devices (what forms does i t take). But essentially, communications usually comprise an administration-wide pattern or network and do not f a l l into headquarters or f i e ld compartments. On the contrary, same forms such as policy and procedure manuals, are clearly central office f i e l d controls. The point to be determined i n regard to their treat-ment under a decentralization i s not so much the balance be-tween authority and control but the amount of f i e ld pa r t i c i -pation that exists i n these communication devices. For example, a c r i t i c a l question i n regard to channels of commun-ication might be, "Is the regional administrator regularly bypassed by communication channels?" In answering this question i t might be stated that channels for the flow of information should follow the general chain of command, whether information is flowing from the f i e l d to the chief executive or i n reverse. This principle holds valid i n the public welfare organization. Points of contact, between the f i e l d and the central office are the Assistant Director of Welfare and the regional administrator. These two form, the main central-f ield bridge over which In-formation directives, reports and s ta t i s t i c s flow in either direct ion. Several minor bridges also exist between the div-isions: and the f i e l d . In the case of those divisions exer-- 67 -cising,. directive functions, information from the f i e l d and advice to the f i e l d i s channeled through a direct c i rcui t from the divis ion to the d i s t r i c t off ices . It i s significant that definite limitations are set on the nature of information given to the f i e l d by the divis ions. This must be of an ad-visory nature only and must be related to services. In short the divisions are not permitted to engage i n control of f i e l d operations and may not by-pass the regional head. This l i m i t -ation Is essential to the preservation of the chain of command within which the head of the regional office i s responsible to the general administration for operations within his area. A. f i n a l channel of communications may be establish-ed between central office and i t s Inspection and consultant officers operating within the f i e l d . Reports from these sources are generally submitted both to the regional heads and the general administration. In a l l cases, the pattern of communication is a def initely established one and at no essential point do channels circumvent the position of the regional administrator. Communication devices are the n tools" of adminis-trat ion. They include directives, policy and procedure manuals, reports and s ta t i s t ics and central-f ield conferences and planning councils.. Policy and procedure materials have the main purpose of establishing uniform methods of carrying on operations and represent a major form of central office control over the f i e l d . In the public welfare administration they f a l l into three groups, the f i r s t of which i s the Office - 6 8 -Practices manual. This manual has been i n use since 1944. and sets out for every office i n the regions, details of a uniform f i l i n g system and general office routine* Such a manual is part icularly Important to a decentralized system. Ey providing uniformity of procedure i t enables personnel to be transferred from office to office without need for "break-ing i n " . In addition, by ensuring that f i l i n g i s carried on In exactly the same manner in each of f ice , the regulations contained In the manual make possible easy transfers of cases from office to office and d i s t r i c t to d i s t r i c t * What the manual achieves i s a standardized office routine throughout the f i e l d . A second manual contains headquarters pol icy on the services offered by the Welfare Branch. Each divis ion has written up specific sections which offer detailed infor-mation on social allowances, old age and blind pensions, chi ld welfare, medical services, and on through a l l the ser-vices. Each component and service of the provincial adminis-tration is. fu l ly dealt with for the guidance of the individ-ual worker as well as his supervisor and regional administra-tor. Alterations to these permanent manuals are obtained by using a system of ser ia l letters employed by headquarters to issue new directives, and cancel or modify old ones. With this device, policy and regulations are kept constantly up to date and. changes may be introduced into a l l d i s t r ic t offices simultaneously without confusion. Each office keeps a special indexed f i l e of ser ia l le t ters . - 69 -T h e m a n u a l s and. t h e l e t t e r i n d e x j u s t d e s c r i b e d a r e v i t a l t o d e c e n t r a l i z a t i o n . . B y means o f t h e m e a c h o f f i c e a n d e a c h s o c i a l w o r k e r i s k e p t u p t o d a t e o n p o l i c y d e v e l o p m e n t s . A s a r e s u l t s e r v i c e s a r e o f f e r e d i n a s t a n d a r d w a y t h r o u g h -o u t t h e p r o v i n c e . O f d i r e c t b e n e f i t t o t h e r e g i o n a l a d m i n i s -t r a t o r , t h e s e m a n u a l s r e p r e s e n t a u n i f o r m , s e c u r e b a s e o f r e g u l a t i o n a n d p o l i c y f r o m w h i c h he a n d h i s r e g i o n a l s t a f f may o p e r a t e t o m e e t t h o s e i n d i v i d u a l s i t u a t i o n s t h a t c a l l f o r a n a p p r o a c h s l i g h t l y d i f f e r e n t f r o m t h o s e p u t f o r t h b y t h e o f f i c i a l m a n u a l s * R e p o r t s a n d s t a t i s t i c s a r e t h e m o s t common d e v i c e s e m p l o y e d t o i n f o r m a c e n t r a l o f f i c e o f f i e l d w o r k o p e r a t i o n s . S t a t i s t i c a l r e p o r t i n g i s p a r t i c u l a r l y i m p o r t a n t t o t h e d i s -p e r s e d a d m i n i s t r a t i o n , , f o r o n l y o n t h e b a s i s o f g o o d i n f o r m a -t i o n f r o m t h e f i e l d c a n i n t e l l i g e n t p l a n n i n g o f f u t u r e o p e r -a t i o n s be c a r r i e d o n . . T h e i n d i v i d u a l r e g i o n s do n o t a s y e t i s s u e r e p o r t s s u c h a s m i g h t be c o n t a i n e d w i t h i n a n a n n u a l r e p o r t o f t h e t o t a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n . H o w e v e r , t h e l a s t a n n u a l r e p o r t f o r e -s h a d o w s s u c h r e g i o n a l r e p o r t i n g f o r n e x t y e a r . T h i s s e e m s s i g n i f i c a n t o f t h e r e a l g r o w t h , o f r e g i o n a l d e c e n t r a l i z a t i o n . F o r t h e f i r s t t i m e s t a t i s t i c s w i l l b e c o m p i l e d a n d i s s u e d s o l e l y f o r r e g i o n a l p u r p o s e s a n d w i l l s h o w o p e r a t i o n s s o l e l y I n t e r m s o f w h a t w a s done I n e a c h r e g i o n . I t d o e s n o t s e e m t o o f a r - f e t c h e d t o s u p p o s e t h a t s u c h o f f i c i a l r e c o g n i t i o n o f r e g i o n a l e n t i t i e s m a r k s a d i v i d e o n t h e r o a d t o a f u l l y i m -p l e m e n t e d d e c e n t r a l i z a t i o n , i n d i c a t i n g - t h a t t h e d o w n w a r d s l o p e - 70 -to an eventual goal has r ight ly begun. Until , this year a l l reports published annually have been compiled by the central office, by the general administration and by the divis ional heads from stat i s t ics supplied from, the regions* Represent-ing the points of authority and control as they have, i t has been f i t t i n g that the divisions should report operations in divisional terms-. It i s true after a l l that s tat i s t ics and reports should be derived from significant operations. It i s therefore indicative of a developing decentralization that the regions are now beginning o f f i c i a l reporting to the people of the province. At present, regional s t a t i s t i c a l reporting is designed f i r s t l y to supply to regional personnel, information of how operations are proceeding. Everyone i n operations from the f i e l d worker to the d i s t r i c t supervisor, to the regional administrator has a v i t a l Interest in the statis-t i c a l picture for eacft. month. Such a picture i s required for evaluating work done and planning new work. Secondly, reporting i n the regions i s designed to bring up to the central, off ice, at regular Intervals, consolidated s tat i s t ics on the act iv i t ies of a l l the regions. The system of reporting employed in the branch Is well designed to accomplish both of these alms. The base of the s t a t i s t i ca l scheme i s the f i e ld worker's dai ly work sheet. At monthly intervals the records of the dai ly flow of work are tota l led by the worker on a f i e l d service report. Each worker then sends his report up - 71 -to his d i s t r ic t supervisor who consolidates the reports of a l l the workers in his d i s t r i c t , retains copies of the re-sults for d i s t r i c t use and hands these s ta t i s t ic s on to the regional administrator. In turn each d i s t r i c t of a region performs a similar consolidation u n t i l tota l regional s ta t i s t ics are obtained. The five regional heads submit their s ta t i s t ics to the central office ( speci f ica l ly to the Assistant Director) and they are again consolidated by that o f f i c i a l to give a complete picture of welfare branch activ-i t y . From the f i e l d worker's dai ly work sheet to the consol-idated report of the total administration, the s t a t i s t i ca l system appears simple and straight forward. It Is ho?rever the product of a great deal of experimentation and at pre-sent i s capable of satisfying several complicated, s t a t i s t i ca l requirements. For example the s tat i s t ics must allow for a good deal of moving about on the part of individual cases. Movement may be between d i s t r i c t s or between regions and duplication could occur in such instances unless provided against. Also, Individual cases may qualify for a number of services. Indiscriminate ta l ly ing could misrepresent such a single case to be a number of cases. The s ta t i s t i ca l sys-tem employed, avoids these poss ib i l i t i e s and, a l l things con-sidered, the complete system seems to have been brought to a high stage of refinement. It performs accurately the task for which It Is designed;, that Is , to count work accomplished, where i t i s accomplished without duplication. Communications within an administration may also - 7 2 -Include methods used for planning. Future moves cannot be formulated adequately without proper information. The cen-t r a l office, therefore, re l ie s on adequate information and communication from the f i e l d i n order to f u l f i l l i t s planning operations,. These operations, i f properly carried out, are In themselves forms of communications. Planning operations i n the public welfare system, are carried on actively by a planning council . This body consists of the Assistant Director of Welfare, as chairman, the heads of the principal divisions and a representative of the regional administrators, usually the administrator of Region II* Although prevented by distance from attending regularly, the other regional heads are attached to the council on a consultive basis. The council meets monthly and discusses operational progress. In addition to the reg-ular s tat i s t ics and reports with which It i s supplied, the council considers special information which may be brought to i t s attention by Individuals i n the f i e l d — workers, super-visors and regional, heads* Such information follows regular channels to reach the planning- council and the regional admin-istrators are largely responsible for presenting- It ta> the planning body* In this manner, the regions participate posit-ively In the overal l planning of the administration. The planning group as a whole wields considerable Influence on the future developments of the organization. Although i t does not make policy d i rect ly , i t serves as an advisory body to the Director of Welfare and the Deputy Minister-, and i t s recommendations are rarely disregarded. New procedures and regulations for existing pol ic ies also originate In the council . With the co-operation of the regions, new procedures are experimented with in actual oper-ations. Decisions are then made on the basis of regional reports on these experiments, and. after tentative regional approval has been given to the ideas being tested. This use of the regions and the fact that the f i e l d i s represented direct ly on the. council i l lus trates the extent to which the f i e l d i s permitted by the central office to participate in planning. Obviously, a definite attempt is; made to u t i l i z e f i e l d experience and to gain f i e ld agreement i n the formul-ation of new procedure. Annual meetings of a l l the regional administrators also give the field, further opportunity to pass on broad policy matters. m an administration where the f ie ld plays such a large part in operations i t i s only to be expected that i t should play a correspondingly large part i n planning. In arranging that i t should do so, the central office seems to follow a general rule for Its treatment of a l l f i e ld manage-ment a c t i v i t i e s . This , i n short, may be expressed, n Let authorities and responsibi l i t ies be given to the unit best able to discharge them." It i s apparent that the general administration have taken an enlightened position i n regard to this ru le . Central office is not invariably regarded as the "unit best able". Qn the contrary, by means of the sub-stant ia l authorities which i t has delegated to the regions - 74 -and the non-interfering type of controls imposed,, central office has shown Itself wil l ing and able to take f u l l advan-tage of the benefits of decentralization, i n management affairs at least. The Innumerable details associated with personnel practices, budget formulation, accounting and stat-i s t i c a l reporting have been "farmed out" on a regulated basis. In this manner headquarters has placed i t s e l f i n a truly d i -rective position where i t may operate to best advantage. CHAPTER V DELEGATION TO THE REGION - COMMUNITY RELATIONSHIPS Because he i s necessarily i n close contact with the immediate f i e l d of operations, the regional administrator of any decentralized organization i s normally responsible for a large proportion of the relationships established between the administration and the local communities. In Br i t i sh Colum-bia this i s part icularly true. In addition to the usual for-mal relationships of a public relations; variety, maintained between an administration and the communities i t serves, the municipalities of the province have always occupied a spec-i a l position i n relation to the provincial authority. The municipalities have been charged since Confed-eration with the care of their s ick and indigent poor. These responsibi l i t ies had not been altered i n succeeding years, with the result that provincial programs of welfare, in the course of universal application throughout the province, became of necessity the administrative responsibi l i t ies of the municipalities* Such a divis ion of administration would not have presented unusual d i f f i cu l t i e s i f the average muni-c ipal i ty had been of sufficient stature to shoulder the burden of welfare services. Unfortunately, such was not the - 7 6 -case. On the one hand the municipalities were small i n area, poor in resources and unsophisticated i n administration; on the other, public welfare programs progressively were becom-ing more numerous, more costly and re la t ive ly more complex in structure. In effect, the municipalities found themselves playing i n a major welfare league with minor league resources. If, within the municipalities, gaps i n services appeared and standards of administration were low, these were understand-able when seen i n the light of the d i f f i cu l t i e s which existed. In consequence, several steps were taken by the province to improve the stature of the municipalities In re-lat ion to welfare services. The f i r s t was aimed at rais ing administrative standards to a uniform l e v e l . In 1945, the Social Assistance Act made i t obligatory for the municipal-i t i e s to implement the f u l l range of public welfare services as offered by the provincial welfare administration. To assist the local units in f u l f i l l i n g this obligation, the Act furnished administrative help in three ways: supervision, per-sonnel and finance. Three methods of obtaining this assis-tance were set out. Those municipalities of over 10,000 pop-ulation by the 1.941. census were required to i n s t a l l their own welfare departments. Staff were to be supplied on a match-ing basis, the province providing one worker for each one supplied by the municipality. Municipalit ies under 10,000 population could follow the above scheme or could "contract" for provincial services at the rate of .150 per capita of population per annum. In the event of only one worker being - 77 -required by a municipal department, the province agreed to pay f i f t y percent of the worker's salary. It was further required that a l l staff employed by the municipalities meet provincial personnel standards. As a f ina l safeguard for uniformity of standards, supervision for workers in munici-pal departments was to be carried out by the d i s t r i c t super-visors of the region within which the municipality was l o -1 cated. The second step taken by the province to improve the position of the municipalities was more purely finan-c i a l . In spite of the fact that financial help had been provided for administration as detailed above, a large per-centage of the costs of the services themselves remained with the local units . The tax resources of the municipalit-ies , strained before the passage of the Social Assistance Act in 1945, were completely unable to meet the r i s ing costs of a general tirelfare program. In response to municipal pro-test therefore, the province in 1947 set up the Goldenberg Commission to examine the s ituation. It was recommended by tine commission that the province reimburse the municipalit-ies by SQ percent of the costs involved i n direct expendit-ures for a l l forms of social a id . This plan was adopted and since February 1947, the province has paid 80 percent "of the costs of social allowances, medical services, emergency health a id , boarding and nursing-home care, foster home care 1 This i s not a uniform practice but i s substantially followed.with smaller loca l uni t s . -- • 2 Report of the Royal Commission on Provincial-Munici-pal Relations. - 78 -for children, who may be either wards, of the Superintendent of Child Welfare or under that o f f i c i a l ' s temporary guard-ianship, and for the tuberculosis allowances and special , more expensive boarding-home care that may be required for 3 tuberculosis convalescents." As may be expected, the inter-relationships set up between the provincial welfare authorities and the munici-pa l i t ie s as the result of these f inancial and administrative agreements necessitated a close l ia i son on a continuing basis. The region appeared as the logical administrative unit to carry out this co-operation since regional boundaries In-cluded In each case both municipal and unorganised terr i tory . In addition, regional administrators and personnel, super-visors and f i e l d workers, were strategical ly situated to be familiar with local problems.. In the case of contracting municipalit ies , regional personnel, actually carried on the welfare administration of the loca l un i t . Even in exclusiv-ely municipal departments> regional supervisors and regional f i e ld workers constituted Integral parts of the administra-t ion . It was therefore expedient, that the. regional unit comprise the point of contact between the provincial adminis-tration and the municipalities and that the regional adminis-trator be delegated authority to deal with the municipalities on matters of administration, personnel and those services for which he was ultimately responsible within the provin-c i a l administration. Upon examination, this delegation resolves into 5 Social Welfare Branch-of the Department of Health and ?felfare, Annual Report, 1948, p. 26. - 79 -a number of specific tasks. Chief among these i s enforce-ment of the provisions of" the Social Assistance Act. Althou-gh the Act specifies certain requirements of the municipal-i t i e s as noted above, i t contains no enforcement clauses other than stoppage of provincial financial participation i n the event of non-co-operation. This sanction, i f applied*, i s equivalent to a complete negation of the aims of the Act i t se l f and as such i s not a part icularly effective measure for inducing municipal co-operation. In fact, i t i s now apparent that the Act attempted to combine lofty social aims with p o l i t i c a l acceptabil ity. In so doing It succeeded in fa l l ing into that class of legis lat ion best described as " a l l mouth and no teeth"". By placating the municipalities at the same time as i t t r ied to reform them, the Act le f t the provincial welfare administration i n an extremely weak, pos i t ion. Provincial policy has therefore, of necessity, been designed on a basis; of interpretation to the municipal-ities: of the advantages, social and f inanc ia l , "contingent upon proper compliance v/ith the Act"'. This interpretive function is not an. easy one. Provincial-municipal relationships have been tradit ional ly weak i n Br i t i sh Columbia, pr incipal ly for f inancial reasons. Prom long experience with restr icted budgets, municipal o f f i c i a l s have tended to view with suspicion provlnclal ly Initiated programs which result in major increases In muni-cipal expenditure. In addition, loca l o f f i c i a l s concerned with loca l problems, have been on the whole unacquainted - 8 0 -with broad Issues of welfare development and. the need for welfare services. Council o f f ic ia l s are generally, i n a very real sense, amateurs in the f i e l d of public service, entering Into public l i f e for short periods and often with-out previous- experience. For these reasons, interpretation i s primarily concentrated on the municipal council l e v e l , which constitutes the head of municipal resistance ( i f any), and the o f f i c i a l point of co-operation, i f such exists. The regional administrator alms f i r s t at establish-ing; a working relationship based on minor provincial-munici-pal transactions. He then employs this relationship to i n -terpret provincial pol ic ies and their value to the community. One of the most Invaluable methods of achieving this relat-ionship i s the annual presentation to every municipal council of the total provincial expenditures for a l l welfare services within the confines of the municipality. This "balance sheet" i l lus trates i n a str iking way the amount of purchasing- power poured into the municipality by the province i n return for the municipal Investment of 20 percent of direct assistance. 4 costs. The regional administrator presents this statement In joint meeting with the municipal reeve and council and thus has personal opportunity to discuss the welfare problems of each loca l unit i n d e t a i l . On such occasions the type of local administration may be reviewed. If the municipality has developed beyond the 10,000 level of population the necessary arrangements for setting up a municipal department may be put forward and the questions, of staff and administra-4 Appendix' B contains a sample balance sheet of welfare expenditure. - 81 -tive f inancial participation explored. Succeeding- joint con-sultations between the council and the regional administra-tor are then held to complete necessary arrangements, in the nearest census year a change-over i s then made to the new agreement. I t i s by such persuasive means that the Social Assistance Act i s enforced and uniformity- of provin-cial-municipal services i s achieved. This process, because of the nature of municipal p o l i t i c s , Is a continuous one. Council elections are held yearly and It i s not impossible for a completely new council to replace one with which relationships have successfully been established. In this event, the regional administrator must ©gain begin to establish a relationship and proveed with his interpretive function as before. This repetitive task, multiplied by the number of municipalities within the administrator's region, gives some measure of the scope and di f f icul ty associated with this delegation of function to the regional administrator. Because, of this very lack of continuity, provincial authorities have recognised that more permanent community relationships can only be achieved by correspondingly more basic approaches. In a paper on this topic the administrator for Region II has stated: M l n long; term planning.. .services w i l l largely l ive or die'depending on the wishes of the aver-age c i t i zen . For a certain length of time a service or an Idea may be Imposed on a commun-i t y but i f the service Is not Interpreted to the community It i s only a matter of time before the average, c i t i zen w i l l express his wish and have the service discontinued. Therefore...we - 82 -must go a step further (than the council) and. carry on a programme in the community."5 He suggests further that this program should not he carried out direct ly by the regional administrator be-cause of his o f f i c i a l pos i t ion. Instead he envisages the social workers: dloing the job, working as interpreters with local community organisations, service clubs* women's organ-izations and church groups, In time there would" be estab-l ished a broad base of community interest and understanding of welfare services. With such a background, the more of f ic-i a l relationships with the municipal councils could become re la t ive ly easier. The community i t s e l f would provide con-t inui ty to i t s successive councils* This scheme of commun-i t y education on the part of the social workers has i n fact been fostered by the regional administrators with satisfact-ory results- Under present conditions of high case loads, however, community participation by f i e l d workers on a for-mal basis i s severely limited by the amount of time ava i l -6 able to them for such purposes. Furthermore, turnover of personnel i n the f i e l d has also been high with the result that opportunities for f i e l d workers to become in f luent ia l , " 7 integral parts of the community is- again reduced. Final ly* community participation of an. effective type requires a natural ab i l i ty and incl inat ion not universally possessed. •-- '5 Sadler, J". A . , ,fCorimunity Organization", Vancouver, 1948.- . . . • 6 Average ease' loads for 194.7-48 were 287, Welfare Branch Annual Report, 1948, p . 32. -- 7- During the year 41947-48 total staff appointments were 44„ resignations 29. The total average staff was 147. - 8 3 -To be most in f luent ia l , specialized training i s also indica-ted. Improvement i s being shown here Inasmuch as training is becoming more available as the number of professionally trained staff Increases in the f i e l d service* In spite of* these drawbacks of lack of time, high f i e l d staff turnover and the scarcity of formal s k i l l s in community organization, a significant amount of interpre-tat ion is being done by the f i e l d personnel on a more infor-mal basis* This i s effected through opportunities presented by the normal f i e l d routine of offering services to the com-munity* The following, suitably altered, Is a brief example of interpreting a specific case to a community as carried out by a f i e ld worker i n the course of his work: "A family of f ive , because of i t s common-law basis, had f a l l e n into disfavour with the loca l small community. The father became i l l and. 'was unable to support and although social assistance had been granted, the family's major trouble, non-acceptance'by"the community, effectively prevented any thorough-going rehab-i l i t a t i o n . The" children, were having trouble at school' and' the father, when" he did recover his health,'found employment d i f f i cu l t to obtain. Howeffer, he had served." with a good record i n the armed forces, and on the basis, of this the worker was able to approach the l o c a l veterans' association concerning this man's problems. Receiving support he next approached the tea-cher and through her, interested the parent-teacher association i n the problems of the children. "Both of these groups', provided help to the family and", enabled i t s members to re-establish themselves within the community. The man obtained a job and the children's school relationships improved*" 8 Although this is not a d i f f i cu l t or unusual case, the worker found that i n the course of swinging community support behind this one family he had been able to Interpret 8 Obtained in an Interview with Dis t r ic t Worker,, W. •Rasmussen, June 1950. - 84 -welfare services to important local organizations on a rather broad basis. He had thus encouraged community relationships with his department without speci f ica l ly setting out to do so beyond the confines of his case. The regional administrator, although not d irect ly implicated i n this type of a c t i v i t y , does foster i t by en-couraging such policy in his relationships with his f i e ld supervisors and personnel. He is also able to act as a "resource person" to the f i e l d worker through his relat ion-ships with the loca l community o f f i c i a l s . Important as l ia i son Is, other relationships may not be neglected. In those municipalities purchasing pro-v i n c i a l servioes on a per capita basis, the relationships with 1he regional administrator are essentially those des-cribed for the f i e l d offices located in unorganized ter r i tory . The regional head has service and managerial authorities with-i n this municipal category precisely the same as those he exercises within the region proper. In the remaining category of municipally adminis-tered welfare departments, his authorities are somewhat more res tr ic ted . His ultimate authority over the granting of the provincial share of social allowances remains unaltered, a l -though in practice the municipal administrations determine the e l i g i b i l i t y of applications within their areas. The latter however, submit monthly reports of soc ia l allowances case turn-overs to the regional head for his approval. S imi l-arly a l l cases of an extraordinary nature are generally - 85 -settled by personal communications "between the regional and municipal administrators. In addition the municipalities forward to the regional administrator a monthly work report l i s t i n g the number of cases handled in a l l services includ-ing social allowances. This report corresponds to the f i e ld work report submitted by the d i s t r i c t offices located in un-organized terr i tory and is used by the regional head i n com-p i l i n g region-wide s t a t i s t i c a l summaries. In respect to managerial duties as described in the proceeding chapter, the regional administrator does not i n -fringe on the sphere of the municipal departments. These are the concern of the municipal administrator. S imilar ly , i n regard to personnel, the regional administrator exercises con-t r o l only over those staff provided by the province under the agreement of the Social Assistance Act . Personnel practices for municipal staff are within the jur isdict ion of the muni-cipal welfare administrator. A major exception (iffi^heory, i f not i n pract ice) , to the above general working relationships between region and municipalities i s represented by the City of Vancouver. Contrary to the usual municipal welfare department which is organized under the terms of the Sooial Assistance Act, the Vancouver Social Service Department i s constituted under the c i ty charter. In broad terms i t may be said therefore that Vancouver, alone among the loca l units of Br i t i sh Columbia, operates an independent welfare department of i t s own i n s t i t -ut ion. However the agreements set forth in the Social Assis-86 -tance Aot as regards services offered, the sharing of direct service costs, and the matching of personnel again hold force. Regional relationships are maintained inasmuch as the c i ty department furnishes the administration of the region within which the c i ty f a l l s , with complete monthly work reports for a l l services, A monthly blanket statement of social allow-ances costs i s also submitted which constitutes a sl ight departure from the more detailed social allowance reports furnished by the remaining municipalit ies. In spite of these "usual" relationships with the region i t may be noted that because of i t s size* the Vancouver Social Service Department in matters of broad pol icy* tends to deal more d irect ly with the general administration of the Social Welfare Branch Q than i s the oase with the smaller municipal it ies . In a theoretical administrative sense this s i tua-tion does not necessarily represent a circumvention of the chain of command since on pol icy matters affecting both the region and the Ci ty , the regional administrator i s inevitably an active participant in discussions. However, his role may be regarded pr inc ipa l ly as a co-ordinating rather than a directive one, as i t i s with the smaller loca l uni t s . The relationships reviewed above are among the most important which exist between the provincial author-i t i e s and the municipalit ies. As administrative operations 9 According to an unpublished survey made in 1948 by the Welfare Director of the Vancouver Social Service Depart-ment, the case load for Vancouver accounted for approximately one-third of total provincial cases in Social Allowances, Old Age Pensions and Mothers* Allowances, - 87 -go, they are also most extensive. Fifteen municipalities are at present operating social service departments and a further number are contracting for provincial services. Negotiations must be carried on v/ith each of these local u n i t s „ Tradit ional ly, such negotiations betv/een the provin-c i a l authorities and the municipalities are most d i f f i c u l t * Moreover, as has been stated, the task of interpretation is often a repetitive one* Without doubt, central office has relieved i t s e l f of a mighty burden by delegating responsib-i l i t y for these relationships. to the regions. Whether, i t has served the regions equally as well i s a matter, for con-jecture. The very complexity and extent of this section of f i e ld operations; raise questions; regarding Its va l id exis-tence. Undoubtedly regional administrators should handle provincial-municipal transactions. No doubt even* they should*, i f anyone should, carry the onerous burden imposed by the Social Assistance Act. It i s an open question, how-ever, i f the aims- of the Act should have to be enforced by a form of salesmanship as they now are. The semi-voluntary basis, of this leg i s la t ion makes i t s implementation a formid-able and time consuming task. The p o l i t i c a l implications i n -volved in s t i f f e r enforcement clauses for the Act cannot be ignored, of course.. But neither can be ignored the draining and diverting effect these intricate municipal affairs exert upon the proper development of decentralization. Working Eontrary to the proper aim of decentralization (i.e.. to delegate authorities to the field} i s the fact that at the; - 88 -present time regional heads cannot accept more responsibi l i ty because of their numerous commitments with the municipalit ies. The toothless condition of the Social Assistance Act is i n good part responsible for this state of affairs . It Is pro-fitable to speculate on what effect a redesigning of this Act could have i n releasing the regional head from his pre-sent pre-occupation with the municipalit ies . CHAPTER YI PRESENT APPRAISAL AND FUTURE DEVELOPMENTS QF DECENTRALIZATION The material"In the preceedlng chapters has sugges-ted that decentralization i s needed In Br i t i sh Columbia pr inc ipa l ly because the nature, of the province demands i t . Without making: this a main point of argument, i t appears that this statement can be strongly supported by the pre-carious state of the centralized, administration following-amalgamation of a l l services i n 1942. The deterioration of central-f ield communications at that time v i r tua l ly forced a readjustment of administrative structure and the decen-tra l izat ion implemented seemed not only desirable but im-perative. The other advantages this system introduced, economy i n f i e ld personnel, the chance to Implement a single flexible service based on need and most importantly, a medium for dealing with welfare counterparts in the munici-palit ies, , a l l of. these clear, gains made decentralization the obvious choice i n administrative remedies. The material reviewed also suggests rather def ini t-ely that the process of decentralization was done wel l , when and. Tfhere It consisted of a purely technical process, free from other Impeding factors. The most notable example of - 90. -this mechanical success may he found i n the eff icient and soundly designed delegations i n regard to s ta t i s t ics and records, accounts, and in fact, pract ica l ly the whole oper-ation of the %tanagemen.'t" or "housekeeping" side of f i e l d ac t iv i ty . In respect to these elements, delegations have been such as to permit the regional heads and supervisors freedom to act and sufficient power to act but within a framework; of controls sufficient to safeguard general po l icy . These are major objectives i n decentralization. Impressive as tills display of technical excellence may be i t cannot obscure the fact that regarded over i t s whole extent, the welfare admin.lstr-at.ian is not ent irely an example of a harmonious, well-balanced, e f f ic ient ly operating, decentralized administration. Internal stresses and strains exist and very apparently prevent the complete real i sat ion of the intended course of decentralization. This fact'seems; to argue convincingly that no structure for administering so complex an undertaking as a public welfare program can be based on technical soundness alone. A l l . elements peculiar to. the problem to be met must be considered or even the most theoretically correct structure w i l l meet, with d i f f i cu l ty in i t s execution. There is no reason to suppose, that this know-ledge, escaped the designers of the decentralization. Many external rea l i t i e s affecting the admintstration were met and dealt with, most notably the need for. a unified department i n the f i r s t place. There are others;, the answer of i n -service training to the wartime manpower shortage* the - 91 -attempt to settle relationships, with the municipalities through the Social Assistance Act of 1945 and the fostering of reasonably attractive personnel practices to attract staff - a l l these matters of concern were dealt with i n one way or another as the need arose. There seems to have been one problem., however, v i t a i to the decentralization, that was nevertheless re la t-ively neglected or ignored. This revolved around the treat-ment objectives of the new administration. What were the treatment objectives of decentralization at Its inception? In review, these seem to have been ":a generalized family ser-vice implemented by trained social w o r k e r s » n Nevertheless i"t appears that tills stated objective was so heavily comprom-ised in the course of decentralization that the only f u l l y professional service, that of chi ld welfare, refused to par-t icipate i n total decentralization and s t i l l remains aloof t i l l this day. This could only mean that the f i e l d personnel, d i s t r i c t supervisors,, regional administrators and f i e ld con-sultants of the new administration were not considered cap-able of maintaining the standards to which the divis ion aspired. There seems l i t t l e dou.bt that, they were not. The f i e l d personnel were* more than f i f t y per cent of them, un-trained, as were four of the five, regional administrators. The d i s t r i c t supervisors,, where, they were trained, lacked sufficient experience and (equally Important) sufficient uninterrupted time to give proper direction to services. The more, economical use of each worker, which the - 92 -unification, of the f i e l d forces produced, also produced l a r -ger case loads for each worker and larger supervisory; loads for each d i s t r i c t supervisor. To the directors of the child welfare program, the Immediate hut repell ing result of decen-tra l izat ion was that of superficial ef f ic iency. Authorities were being decentralized but not pr inciples . This result was not compatable with their expressed objectives of protection and rehabi l i tat ion for children, at a professional";level. They therefore held back, and pa r t i a l l y because of their re-luctance, the decentralization assumed Its present hybrid form. It p la inly appears that the external rea l i ty of pro-fessional social work standards within public welfare and their potential effect on the course of the decentralization Y/as not suff ic iently taken into account before, the plan was launched. It i s in this sense that technical efficiency alone fa i led to guarantee a- irorkable administrative struc-ture. The other external factor, which resulted In d i -verting the or ig ina l plan for dispersion, consisted of that enduring monolith of national p o l i t i c s , federal-provincial relationships. The categorical and. centralized form of old age and blind pensions has already been related to these chronic negotiations and the lack of broad financial agree-ments which accompany them. These, by breeding categorical regulations, prevented old age pensions from joining the decentralization and a generalized family service just as effectively as the child Y/elfare service, was prevented by r - 93 -professional standards and objectives. The difference i s , of course,; that much less could have been done about the former. Progress here depended on mutual agreement among ten provincial governments, and was out of reach of the planners of one provincial department. Treatment objectives on the other hand were d irect ly within their jur i sd ic t ion . When considered together, i t does stand out that these two, rather unrelated,., but decisive problems of pro-fessionalism and federal-provincial relationships were not native to the decentralization. Rather, they dated back to the time of the amalgamation In 1942 and before that to the developmental history of welfare services from the earliest days. What becomes apparent, when the present development of decentralization in Br i t i sh Columbia is reviewed,, i s the fact that this administrative device was imposed upon an essentially divided and disunited administration, which was composed of elements of services with widely varying points of view. O f f i c i a l l y one, these elements were actually s t i l l divided,, in objectives, i n philosophy, in training and i n legis lat ion. It i s therefore l i t t l e surprise that when de-centralization Yfas superimposed on this structure i t did not, and could not,, follow a normal course of development. It could take f u l l effect only in those directions permitted by the unresolved, conflicts created by amalgamation. The present semi-decentralized structure was the result* a technically correct but a philosophically confused ent i ty . The question of whether decentralization was under-- 9 4 -taken in spite of a knowledge of the l ike ly outcome of div-ided objectives or whether i t was begun in some ignorance of i t , i s an Interesting one. Nevertheless, at this point, i t i s largely academic. The problems which beset the decen-tra l izat ion must be dealt with regardless of their o r i g i n . It seems probable that what can be done to eliminate the obstacles toward ful ler dispersion of authorities, w i l l be done at the earliest opportunity. The problem most amenable to attack i s that of f i e l d standards of treatment. There-is every Indication that the administration has recognized the necessity for improved professional standards, not merely because the chi ld welfare divis ion has impressed i t s point and further decentralization is clearly seen as depending on Improved treatment objectives. Much more s ignif icantly, i t i s becoming increasingly clear in i t s own right that public welfare must henceforth be conducted In such a way as to provide f irst-rate prevention services, supplemented by successful rehabi l i tat ion for the soc ia l ly handicapped, i f i t i s to avoid becoming an ever increasing drain on public resources. Welfare costs in a l l countries are continually on the rise and this province i s no exception. Administra-tive refinements are merely p a l l i a t i v e . The only possible way to cut ensuing costs, short of cutting services also, i s to ensure that public services do provide a maximum of success-ful prevention and rehabi l i ta t ion. The emphasis on "success-f u l " here i s deliberate. No half-measures w i l l suffice. Such an emphasis requires another, that of top-- 95 -f l ight professional personnel to achieve these aims. It Is an administrative truism to say that the quality of services Is only as good as the quality of men who implement them. In those services- where prevention and treatment are the predominant elements, this statement holds part icularly true. It is no secret why public health administrations, in this province and i n others, recruit only the most highly trained professionals to staff their preventative programs. The best way to control disease is to prevent i t and only personnel with the best possible training are adequate, to prevention. Social i l lnesses are. equally best controlled by prevention and by use of the highest calibre of personnel available. There Is considerable evidence to suggest that the public welfare administration shares such thinking. The specialist services maintained by the welfare branch, such as the psychiatric divis ion attached to the mental hospitals and the child guidance c l i n i c , are staffed exclusively by university trained personnel of the highest standards. This is obviously in recognition of the need for such personnel in this purely preventative and rehabil i tat ive sett ing. This trend is. also extending to some degree into the general f i e l d . The statement has been made by the administration's director for personnel that the dilemma of the non-profess-ional regional administrators i n being unable to accept authority for treatment services w i l l be resolved by the ultimate appointment, of administrators with ful l , training quali f icat ions. Presumably, this i s some time away i n the - 96 -future hut i t is nevertheless indicative of the general direction of trends. Furthermore, emphasis on professional-ism is also apparent i n the d i s t r ic t supervisory staff, which has been developing under decentralization.. This staff without exception,.. Is f u l l y trained. In regard to the f i e ld workers, the standards are admittedly not quite so high. Scarcities of professional social workers s t i l l exist . A l l i e d with this Is some admin-is trat ive opinion that services have not reached the point of development i n Br i t i sh Columbia where they demand exclus-ive professional attention. From some vantage points this is. a correct view. But most of. these reasons are negative ones which do not argue conclusively against eventual, es-tablishment of high professional standards in f i e l d person-n e l . For example, i t i s argued that case loads are in general too high to permit maximum use of professional sk i l l s in a rea l ly effective manner. Secondly, a large number of essentially non-treatment services occupy a good deal of the individual workers time, trained or untrained. These argu-ments, of course, weakly ignore the fact that since the pre-sent generalized service i s administered by a single worker in a given area, that worker should be a fu l ly qualified one If he i s to implement existing treatment services, no matter how few they may be, or ?/hat small, part of f i e l d -time they occupy. In addition i t does seem apparent, that from a f inancial point of vie?;, the present services are. not pitched at a suff iciently high level to make a thorough - 9 7 -going preventative and rehabil itative program possible. Ultimately this w i l l be revealed as false economy but pres-ently,, in the fact of such tremendous welfare costs, i t has the tendency to appear merely reasonable. Obstacles enough, rea l and unreal, exist therefore, to prevent the implement-ation of good treatment services, which trould automatic a l l y require the best in f i e l d personnel* which would in turn solve the problem of decentralizing the ch i ld welfare ser-vices.. It i s Important, however, In spite of existing circumstances, to aim at the proper objectives, even i f these cannot be reached immediately. Both for the particular rea-son of administrative harmony and the general reason of "whither welfare in Br i t i sh Columbia",, treatment services provided by professional social workers must be that. aim. This statement becomes more imperative, viewed in the l ight of the few treatment, services available from private welfare agencies in the province. These are, in comparison with other provinces and states* negligible in the overall p ic-ture. In the past*, at present, and for sometime i n the fut-ure, the public welfare administration w i l l be responsible for bringing the best in welfare services to i t s c i t izens , i f only for the reason that there is. ho one else to do this job. Some of the things which may aid In this task are more, obvious than rad ica l . For one, modern personnel prac-tices put into effect by a trained personnel officer would 98 -have a salutory effect on recruiting and keeping the right kind of trained workers*. Salary recognition for extra training i s s t i l l a tiling of the future. No opportunity exists for workers to compete for preferred posit ions. Turnover in personnel is s t i l l too great to allow the grad-ual accumulation of a f i e l d force which i s both trained and experienced. The la t ter point i s a part icular ly acute one. Training alone does not guarantee an eff ic ient f i e l d service* It merely makes one feasible. A truly productive f i e l d force is the one that stays put for reasonable lengths of time. For this reason, special efforts could be taken to encourage male recruitment, since men presumably would enter the service to make a career, not to prepare for one. Increased numbers of male graduates from the social work schools strengthen the. poss ib i l i ty of this suggestion. The position of the regional administrators could be improved in respect to treatment aims and the. decentral-i sa t ion . More regions; with more appointments of adminis-trators are indicated for the f ina l realisation of both objectives. New appointments should invariably be from pro-fessionally trained personnel. These moves would eventually produce regional administrators capable of accepting the burden of f u l l delegation. It is perhaps excessively optim-i s t i c to hope that, something could be done to remove or ease the burden on the administrators of "caring** for the munici-p a l i t i e s . A revision of the Social Assistance Act would suffice but seems remote. Perhaps enough time has passed to - 99 -warrant the hope that the municipal welfare flux, which requires so much care, w i l l s tabil ize into routines most effectively handled by assistants to the administrator. The obvious supervisory flaw restraining- further decentralization, consists of the amount of administrative routines and procedural s k i l l s with which each supervisor must cope. Although unwelcome because they exclude atten-t ion to better treatment standards, these are yet indispen-sible and important. A suff ic iently experienced staff would considerably reduce, the supervisor. rs concern with such de-t a i l . Fa i l ing this , and as d i s t r i c t offices grow, technical assistants could well be used to remove from the. supervisors the excessive burden of routines. F ina l ly , since the major roadblock, to a more com-prehensive decentralization has essentially been one of pr inc ip le , a redefinition of the administration's objectives and principles i n treatment, would alone be of tremendous, service, & redefinit ion of principle, need not Involve an immediate, and carte blanche realignment of the administra-tion to suit such pr inciples . This might not be possible, as indeed It might not be desirable. Many serious: problems must first, be solved. The point involved,, however, has been well described by a former ambassador to the United States, Speaking of world affairs in general he said, "Our tasks are: to define what Is desirable;- to define what i s possible at anytime within the scheme of what, i s desirable;, to carry out what ^ i s possible in the sp i r i t of what Is desirable" 1 Senor Salvador de Madarlaga, Ambassador from the late Republic of Spain to the U . S. A. - 100 -Within such a conception of action the "'possible" and the "desirable"" do not compromise but instead reinforce one another. They therefore alio?; concerted action of the whole organization toward specified objectives in spite of presenting: problems. Although the welfare administration has continually made s k i l l f u l use of the "possible", It i s not clear that thoroughgoing, speci f ic , black-and-white statements of what Is desirable in the way of long range objectives have ever been agreed upon by the whole adminis-trat ion. This i s a crippling handicap to i t s function. In the end, tills ommission reduces the administration to the position i n which i t resembles a boat containing a number of people a l l wanting to travel to different destinations. There Is grave probability that the resultant, voyage w i l l be highly circular and that none of the passengers w i l l t ruly have their hearts i n the t r i p . It Is Imperative, however visionary or however elevated i t may be, that a common objective be obtained, satisfactory to a l l elements of the administration so that i t may be maintained through every expediency as a f i n a l goal to which the tota l administration is moving. Modern concepts of prevention and rehabi l i ta t ion for a l l human handicap, physical , mental and emotional, seem well suited to form such an objective. It is only in this direction that the amalgamated services w i l l eventually find unity and a complete decentralization. ATPEND-TX A SERVICES A . General Case-work. Services. B . Specific Services. 1. Child' Welfare. 2'i. Mothers' Allowances, 3. Social Allowances. 4, Old Age Pensions. •5. Tuberculosis Div i s ion . 6. Venereal Disease Divis ion. 7. Mental Hospitals. 8. Child Guidance C l i n i c . 9. Boys Industrial School. ' 10. G i r l s Industrial School. 11. Hospital Inspection Branch. 12. Provincial Home and Infirmaries. 15. Collections Service. 14. Law Courts. 15. Family Allowances (Federal). 16. Veterans Affairs (Federal). 17. Indian Affairs (Federal). Services in regard to tuberculosis, veneral dis-ease, the mental hospitals, the child guidance c l i n i c and hospital inspection are carried out by special divisions of f i e ld workers who are attached to the appropriate adminis-tration or agency governing the service. For example tuber-culosis, veneral disease and hospital inspection services are carried out by public welfare workers attached to the Public Health Branch of the Department of Health and Welfare.-Workers serving the mental hospitals and the ch i ld guidance c l in ic are attached to the Provincial Secretary's Department. These services are. therefore not direct concerns of the regional administrators. APPENDIX B Sample Balance Sheet of Welfare Expenditure as Employed by Regional Aciministrators, STATEMENT FOR "X" MUNICIPALITY Caseload as at Apr i l 1950 Social Allowance...... 75 Mothers Allowance. 15 Old Age Pension 333 Family Service 10 Child Welfare 24 Others 12 Disbursements for month of April 1950 Amount Municipal Provincial Inter- Federal Municipal disbursed share share share share Social Allowance 3,637.00 540,00 3,000.00 97.00 Mothers Allowance 649,50 - 649.50 Old Age Pension 13,320.00 - 5,827.50 - 7,492.50 Child Welfare 130,00 26.12 104.48 - -17,736.50 566.12 9,581.48 97.00 7,492.50 Approximate Medical Costs per Year Administrative Costs per Month Provincial Government pays Hospital Mothers Allowance and Old Age Pens! Municipal Provincial Total 630.00 2,400.00 3,030.00 $ 860,00 (Provincial share) Insurance for Social Allowance, >n cases. The above i s a composite statement compiled from several actual statements and applies to no specific municipality 8 < B I B L J O G S A P H Y i BIBLIOGEATHY 1. Books Br i t i sh Columbia, Annual Report of the Social Wel- fare Branch of the Department of Health, and' Welfare, Vic tor ia , King's Printer,194.7,194.8, 1949. Br i t i sh Columbia in the Canadian Confederation, A Submission presented to the Royal Commission on Dominion-Provincial Relations by the Govern-ment of the Province of Br i t i sh Columbia,Victoria, King's Printer , 19 3E. Br i t i sh Columbia, Public Accounts t 1874-75, 1945,-44, 1947-48, V ic tor i a , King's Pr inter . Canada, Dominion Bureau of S ta t i s t i c s , Canada Year  Book, Ottawa,. King's Pr inter , 1948. Cassldy, H. M.,. Public Health and Welfare Reorganiz- ation y Toronto, Ryerson Press, 1945. Latham, E a r l , The Federal F i e ld Service. Chicago* Public Administration Service, 1947. Marx, Fr i t z Morstein* ed . , Elements in Public Admin- i s t rat ion, New York, Prentice Hall , ,1948. White, Leonard, Introduction to the Study of Public  Admini s trat i on „ New York, MacMillan Co. , 1939 TJrwick, L.,, The Elements • of Admini s t ra t ion :» New York, Harper &. Brothers, 1944. Mosher, William' E . and Donald J.. Klngsley, Public  Personnel Administration, New York.,, Harper & Brothers* 1939. Stevenson, Marietta, Public Welfare Administration t New York* The MacMillan Co. 1938. At water, Pierce, Problems of Administration In Social Work. Minneapolis, Minnesota: The Univer-s i ty of Minnesota Press, 1940. 2. Phamphlets and Articles Carlson* C. J , "Clearance of Instructional Material for F ie ld Offices",•Case Reports i n Public Ad- ministration, No, 64, Chicago, Public Adminis-trat ion Service, 1941. Cooper, William, and. H.K. Robinson, "Organization of Accounting In an Agency with Geographically Separated Projects , " Case Reports i n Public  Administrat ion,No. . 82» Chicago Public Adminis-tration Service, 1941. Hedge, A, M.. and G.C. S, Bensen, "Supervision and Inspection of Local Projects by Regional Offices, Case Reports in Public Adminlstratian,. No; 45, Chicago, Public Administration Service,1941. Simmons, W.R. „ "Geographical vs. Functional Organ-izat ion i n Central F ie ld Relations,'* Case Re- ports i n Public Adminlstratian, No. 61 Chicago, Public Administration Service> 1941* 

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