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Annual Report of The Social Welfare Branch of the Department of Health and Welfare For the Year Ended… British Columbia. Legislative Assembly [1955]

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Annual Report of
The Social Welfare Branch
of  the  Department  of
Health and Welfare
For the Year Ended March 31st
Printed by Don McDiarmid, Printer to the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty
  Victoria, B.C., October 28th, 1954.
To His Honour Clarence Wallace, C.B.E., 5
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of British Columbia.
May it please Your Honour:
H    The Annual Report of the Social Welfare Branch of the Department of Health and
Welfare for the year ended March 31st, 1954, is herewith respectfully submitted.
Minister of Health and Welfare.
Office of the Minister of Health and Welfare,
Parliament Buildings, Victoria, B.C.
 Social Welfare Branch, j|   ||
Victoria, B.C., October 28th, 1954.
The Honourable E. C. Martin,
Minister of Health and Welfare, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the Annual Report of the Social Welfare Branch
for the year ended March 31st, 1954.
I have the honour to be,
Your obedient servant,
Deputy Minister of Welfare.
Map  7
Introduction  9
Part I.—General and Regional Administration—
General  11
Assistant Director of Welfare  13
Regional Administration—
Region I  20
Region II  23
Region III  24
Region IV  27
Region V  28
Region VI  31
Part II.—Divisional Administration—
Family Division—
Social Allowances  35
Mothers' Allowances—  40
Family Service  46
Child Welfare Division  52
Old-age Assistance and Blind Persons' Allowances Boards and Cost-of-living
Bonus  60
Medical Services Division  74
Part III.—Institutions—
Industrial School for Boys   77
Industrial School for Girls  85
Provincial Home  91
Welfare Institutions Board  94
Part IV.—Medical Social Work and Psychiatric Social Work Services
Social Service Department, Division of Tuberculosis Control  103
Social Service Department, Division of Venereal Disease Control  107
Psychiatric Division, Social Services, Provincial Mental Health Services  110
Hospital Consultation and Inspection Division of Hospital Insurance Service  130
E. W. Griffith, Esq.,
Deputy Minister of Welfare.
Sir,—I am pleased to submit herewith the Report of the Social Welfare Branch
for the year ended March 31st, 1954.
In presenting this Report there are some changes in format concerning which a few
words of explanation may be helpful.
The Report is divided into four parts. Part I contains the reports of the Assistant
Director of Welfare and Regional Administrators. Part II outlines the respective
statutory functions and administrative responsibilities of the four major divisions of the
Branch, namely, Family, Child Welfare, Old-age Assistance Board, and Medical Services.
Part III gives an account of the social work in the Provincial institutions of the Branch—
that is, the Boys' and Girls' Industrial Schools and the Provincial Home. The report of
the Welfare Institutions Board is also included in this section. Part IV is an interpretive
analysis of the social services in the Division of Tuberculosis and Venereal Disease Control and in the Psychiatric Division, Provincial Mental Health Services. The report of
the Hospital Consultation and Inspection Division of the Hospital Insurance Service
concludes this section.
The administrative heads of regions, divisions, and institutions have given this year
more descriptive accounts. They have indicated trends as well as important gaps or
unmet needs in services.
In past Reports in my letter of transmittal various items of general information were
mentioned. Such items appear now under the heading of " General." Statistical and
financial data have been placed for the most part at the end of each report.
The cover has been designed by a member of the clerical staff in the office of the
Assistant Director. The map at the beginning gives the geographic outline of the six
regions—the regional administrative units of the Branch.
In making these changes our purpose has been to present the activities of the
Branch in a more readable manner. Those of us engaged in the administration of social
welfare services, whether on the municipal or Provincial level, take a pride, justifiable
I think, in what we have been able to accomplish in the year under review. As one of
the larger-spending branches of government, we hope, through the medium of the
Annual Report, to acquaint the people of this Province with the activities of the Branch
and how the moneys appropriated to it have been spent.
Respectfully submitted.
W      Wk C. W. LUNDY,
Director of Welfare.
i The varied geographical and population characteristics of the Province accent
social welfare services.
An estimate of the total population of British Columbia for 1953-54 was 1,230,000.
In thirty years the population has more than doubled, and almost half of this has occurred
during the last ten years. The over-all density of population was 3.2, the second lowest
in Canada. However, a very small part in the southern end of the Province had a heavy
concentration of people, with the vast central and northern parts with a greatly scattered
and sparse population. As elsewhere, the movement was away from the country to the
city.   Sixty-eight per cent of British Columbians lived in urban communities.
To facilitate public welfare administration of a Province with such diversity of
population and geography, the Province is divided into six geographical regions. These
vary in area from the Fraser Valley (Region VI), which has only a few thousand square
miles and a very high density of population, to the northerly region (Region V), which
has an area of more than 200,000 square miles with a very low density of population.
Until such time as the regional boundaries can be altered to correspond with the established census areas or alternate " base " areas, it will be difficult to provide adequate
estimates of population and, therefore, of incidence of social breakdown.
Nevertheless, from the 1951 Census data available on the composition of the
population, British Columbia had some unique vital statistics. The Province had a
greater proportion of older people than had Canada as a whole. Almost 16 per cent of
British Columbia's population was 60 years of age and over, whereas Canada's was only
slightly more than 11 per cent. The case load of the Branch reflected this ageing of
population; that is, nearly 69 per cent of the people in receipt of social assistance were
65 years of age or over (see Table I, page 13 of this Report). More encouraging on
the other hand, people under 20 years of age comprised approximately 34 per cent of
the population of British Columbia and 38 per cent of the population of Canada. Married
persons accounted for 50 per cent of the Provincial population but for only 45 per cent
of the National population. Indicative of social maladjustment, possibly, was the fact
that almost one-quarter of the nation's divorced persons were shown to reside here. The
Family Division's report (page 46) referred to the very great percentage increase in
family service cases in the past five years. For the calendar year 1953 there were 1,034
adoptions ordered by the Supreme Court, a percentage increase over the previous year
of 11.3 per cent. In the calendar year 1952 the percentage increase over 1951 was 18
per cent. The Superintendent of Child Welfare, one page 56 of this Report, has suggested what the impact of adoption will be on future generations. All these and many
other characteristics continued to have a direct bearing on the social welfare programme
and costs, some of the significance of which has been interpreted in the following pages.
More than fifteen Acts, ranging from the " Protection of Children Act" to the
I Old-age Assistance Act," were administered by the Branch. In the 1953-54 session
of the Legislature certain social legislative amendments and one new piece of social
legislation were enacted. The amendment to the "Adoption Act," giving adopted children the same rights of inheritance as natural children, was significant. The Act to provide for Allowances to Disabled Persons will enable the Provincial Government to take
immediate advantage of the Federal legislation. Specific reference to other Acts and
regulations will be made in the body of this Report.
Keeping pace with the increase in population and urbanization, there has been
further expansion of regional administration, some particulars of which are given on
J 12
*   a     w«re I Social Assistance Act," and also in Part I in the
page 39, Part II, under the ^rence rf decentralization enabled the Depart-
various reports from the regions    i   J^        responsibilities noted above.   It enabled
ment to carry out more eff^^T^tioa, Vembracive in character; that i
it also to carry out its   personalis „   Throughout the Report, stories of a
"making democracy ^^^ fn£withhdd) helped by staff have ffiustri
%1££^5^S$*of social casework with ^whose needs
"* ^oThnsSe personnel in this Report were encouraged to state difficulties as
well r^SSTlU analysis a common denominator emerged. The reasonable
Sand ? Pubhc Jsocial services exceeded the supply of personnel. Shortages,
la^r gaps in services have been due largely to the lack of properly tramed staff There
were also, of course, the inevitable limitations inherent in any programme of public
service The major problem confronting most social agencies, inclusive of the Social
Welfare Branch, was the unavailability of professionally tramed social workers. The
Assistant Director's report (page 17) has described in some detail the new in-service
training plan designed to increase for the interim the supply of personnel.
The urgent need of private hospitals or nursing homes for the chronic ill to relieve
the congestion in general hospitals was a great concern in most regions. The northern
half of the Province and the elongated Okanagan Valley had no private hospitals. Treatment centres for seriously disturbed young and adolescent children, housing for single
old people without relatives or friends, foster homes for the school-age child, extension
of facilities for the rehabilitation of handicapped children and adults—these, in part,
the social workers saw as community projects. The numbers of unemployed employables during the winter months constituted a problem. ifgj*
However, lest one might conclude there never was an end to people's needs for
assistance, this year's Report revealed several excitingly encouraging signs. As the conquest of tuberculosis and venereal disease has become more certain with the new drugs,
medical social services in these divisions of control (where the supply of social workers
more closely approximated the demand) showed the positive results of skilful casework
diagnosis and treatment. They have begun to know those individuals who will respond
to treatment and those who will not. The number of applicants in the Child Guidance
Clinic, Vancouver, has commenced to level off. The number of old people 65 to 69
years dependent on Provincial old-age assistance apparently has become constant rather
than on the increase as in previous years. The number of recidivists in the Boys' Industrial School was the lowest it has ever been. Region VI mentioned this year's less turnover of staff and the excellent growth of community resources. Its administrator concluded her report with the statement: i The amount of work to be done is always beyond
vwi!i a ' b°ih ~erical and social work' yet a maximum effort is made by Pro-
F™Z rmCiP£ °ffiueS.t0 serve weU aU *"** wh0 come to them for assistance."
^SS^^S^S^^S^ T t^quota^n at -*+*l
but the struma " Tttl 7 P . The important thmg m life is not toe triumph
whhm^ 3s of a cnnl aPPropr?te' *«*«' t0 «»*»* these general remarks
f WeS service, ,7^7 P"?8* Nationalist in social work:-
to shiftTfiXf £^^t?sM^ myare::t
a struggle for creative social and spirited LffilmemV^     SUbS1SteDCe °r mere SUCCeSS' *
I beg to submit the following report for the fiscal year ended March 31st, 1954:—
The staff of any agency is the medium through which that agency carries out its
function and achieves its purpose.
The function of the Social Welfare Branch is to administer this Province's social
legislation. Much of this administration involves the spending of large amounts of public
money, in respect of relatively large numbers of people of all ages whose need of such
help is indisputable. It is imperative, therefore, that in fulfilling this function the staff
employed have the highest degree of integrity and an appreciation of the necessity of
using public money appropriately and to the maximum value.
The purpose of the Social Welfare Branch is to do more than merely relieve need.
It is to help people restore themselves to a state of independence wherever that can be
done. This not only saves public money, but safeguards human values, for self-dependence is a cherished component of our democratic culture. Yet, when illness, accident,
separation, desertion, neglect, and other such human problems are experienced, without
help of the right sort, these problems can lead to a crippling of initiative, to embittered
attitudes arising, and eventually perhaps to loss of ability to overcome the problem.
Judgment and devotion on the part of social workers are needed to help such people to
take the difficult steps to be again self-directing and to find the opportunities to achieve
that goal.
The personnel policies of this Branch are based on these two considerations:
Assurance of the wise use of public money, and the restoration of the individual to the
place where he can stand comfortably and safely on his own feet. When the safety of
a child, or the safety of the community, demands that authoritative legal action be taken,
that authority is firmly exercised but is employed with understanding, respect for human
rights, and with the hope of effecting changes in attitude and conduct. It is, in other
words, the concern of the staff that each child, each family, each person, old and young,
who is served be accorded individual consideration. Each is different; each has supreme
value as a human being. This is the creed of the social worker.    K
In the year under review there has been no diminution of the demand for the services this Branch affords to people in all parts of this Province. Rather, demands have
continued to increase, as a careful study of the tables will reveal.
Nevertheless, this year even greater efforts have been made or instigated to doubly
guarantee that the widespread operations are conducted with economy consistent with
expected standards of services. It has been again confirmed that overtime work is the
rule rather than the exception in all the district offices, this applying to supervisors as
well as social workers. A new job analysis has been undertaken by a committee of the
Planning Council, as well as a study of ways of simplifying statistical accounting, neither
study being wholly completed as yet.
The term | standards of service " denotes the quality of the service given. Quality
is not an abstraction. It can be measured in many ways: by the cases which can be
closed because a family is again on its feet; by the numbers of people who voluntarily
ask for purely professional services, where no financial aid is needed; by the regard in
which the public, its officials, and other professions hold social services; by the efforts
made by the staff to utilize every opportunity to improve their understanding and skills.
Quality of services cannot obviously be sacrificed. Indeed, quality must be recognized. To this end, and because the administration is well aware of the efforts made by
the staff to give their best to their work, the review of the staff situation started last year
by the Planning Council was concluded by presenting a brief to the Civil Service Com-
J 14
•  •       ii brief contained recommendations for a reclassification of professional
mission.   This bnet coniamcu d -^ion of salaries.   At the same time a
positions in the ^^ ^^SIa leisure time, also presented a brief to the
committee of the staff itself, w0™.^smeEach brief was based upon the facts of the
ii Pmnomies implicit in the obtaining and holding of competent qualified stag
are J^J^^!^^ the greater number of people rehabilitated, and the
"^^duZ^j^^ graver problems (such -i.^W *ness
Sug and alcohol addiction, desertion, any one of which costs infinitely more to treat)
from arising in the future. That is an obvious statement. What is not so generally
realized is that the relatively small amount of money required to attract better-qualified
social workers can lead to a reduction of the larger costs of destitution and social breakdown.   The more skilled and competent the staff, the better the quality of rehabilitative
The following tables require to be studied in conjunction with each other. Table
I is a categorical analysis of the total number of family units and shared services active
in the district offices of the Branch as at March 31st, 1954. It is necessary to note
here that in the subsequent statistical tables the case load represents only the number of
family units. The additional services other than the initial category rendered a family
unit—that is, shared services—are not included in Tables II, III, and IV. Therefore,
the case loads given are less than the combined case loads of family units and shared
services, which combined units may have been given in other sections of the Annual
Table I.—Breakdown of Case Load1 by Categories of Service as at March 31st, 1954
Category of Service Number Per Cent
Total    60,468 100.000
Family Service (no financial assistance)     1,545 2.555
Social assistance—
Mothers' Allowance       430
Social Allowance  10 349
MpM        ,   10,779 17.825
Blind Persons' Allowances       439 726
Old-age Assistance—
Old-age Assistance  10 062
Old Age Security bonus and
health services  31 638
Child Welfare Division   4}'™ 6S96^
Medical and institutional— ' 8'177
Tuberculosis Division    I     _      o26
Psychiatric Division JS       287
Collection of institutional
revenue          |       ]n
Hospital clearance        _ ,.
Provincial Home,...     Ipf ~ *
Provincial Infirmary ~~_ | I
Welfare Institutions Boardl__ 296
19^^^^^^^tei    1,06°     L752
J 15
On March 31st, 1953, the case load for the Province totalled 60,320 (Annual
Report, 1953, p. 14); on March 31st, 1954, it was 60,468.
Table II shows the number of cases opened; that is, new, reopened, and trans-
ferred-in family or individual applicants for services in each month of the fiscal year.
It shows also the number of cases closed; that is, families or individuals for whom
services were concluded in each month of the fiscal year. It is interesting to note that
whilst there were 11,743 new families or individuals in receipt of services, 13,331 ceased
to be in receipt of services. The table shows further the number of transferred-in cases
approximated the number of transferred-out cases, but most significant of all is the
number of reopened cases. The reopened cases were 2,897 and accounted for the
large increase in the total case load. In other words, 2,897 families or individuals
sometime or other prior to April, 1953, had been in receipt of services and for one
reason or another had had to reapply for assistance. This very large number of re-
applicants might indicate along with other factors they had found only partial solution
of their problems. A study of a section of such reopened cases might well prove a
profitable piece of research.
The actual increase in the total case load at the fiscal year's end—that is, the
number of opened cases in excess of the closed cases as shown in the last column of
Table II—was 1,278. 1
In other words, throughout the district offices the social workers, working as hard
as they could—even closing each and every month except November more cases than
opening—found their case loads steadily increasing month by month. The increase of
1.278 cases, in effect, represents enough work for several additional social workers.
As shown in Tables III and IV, the number of social workers was not increased sufficiently to carry these additional cases, with the result that the average size of case load
was increased from 235 to 251. It is fairly obvious that social workers under pressure
of unmanageable case loads can do barely quantity performance, let alone quality performance. Elsewhere in this Annual Report, specific reference will be made to the
deleterious effects from inadequate staff and also on the contrary the excellent results
when staff is equivalent to the tasks assigned. Therefore, until such time as the field
staff is increased to enable reduction in case load, the quality and results of social services
may well be in reverse; that is, great numbers of reopened cases, of recidivists and
unrehabilitated people. If this tendency persists, costs will not be reduced and there will
be less permanent recovery from social illness.
Table II.—Number of Cases1 Opened and Closed in the District Offices2
from April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Cases Opened during Month
Cases Closed during Month
in Case
April, 1953	
May, 1953	
June, 1953	
July, 1953	
August, 1953	
September, 1953.
October, 1953	
November, 1953.
December, 1953..
January, 1954.	
February, 1954-
March, 1954	
— 144
+ 199
+ 1,278
1 Cases are family units.
2 District offices do not include Vancouver City Social Service Department.
 J 16
Table III.-
-Distribution of Professional Staff, Showing Salary'Classification and Average
Size of Case Load1 as at March 31st, 1954
Social Workers
Grade 1
Grade 2
Grade 3
Average Size of Case Load1
Case Load8
Average Case
Load, less
Case Load4
A. Provincial district offices (30)	
B. Amalgamated district offices5 (11).
C. Divisions and institutions	
498 (7)
742 (7)
230 (7)
346 (7)
\ SE obtain StaVr^case load by the total number of social workers in the office.
carrying all remaining categories.
5 Section B shows only the Provincial social workers and supervisors.
Figures in parentheses indicate the number of district offices involved.
Table IV.—Distribution of Professional Staff (Supervisory), Showing Salary Classification
and Average Number of Social Workers Supervised as at March 31st, 1954
Social Workers
Average Number
of Social Workers
Average Size
of Case Load
Grade 4
Grade 5
A. Provincial district offices (30)        ~
7             10
B. Amalgamated district offices1 (11)	
C. Divisions and institutions    - _
7            29
1 Section B shows only the Provincial social workers and supervisors.
Figures in parentheses indicate the number of district offices involved.
-Tables III and IV are complementary.
The Staff Situation
Table V represents the total staff of the Branch—social workers, supervisors, administrators, and consultants in field offices and divisions. It does not include the social
workers, supervisors, and directors of municipal departments. In all but two of the
eleven "amalgamated | municipal social welfare departments (Vancouver and Victoria)
the municipalities give the same generalized service as the Provincial district offices and
are supervised by the Provincial district supervisors. In the five municipal offices where
only one stag member is employed (whose salary is shared between Province and
municipality), that social worker gives a service in relation to the Old-age, Social, and
Mothers Allowances categories only. These five also receive supervision from Pro-
vincial supervisors. r
       Table y~Increase in Professional Staff, 1953-54
Total staff, March 31st, 1953
Staff appointed April 1st, 1953, f^^SM^Wi
Resignations, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Total staff, March 31st, 1954.„ ""
J  17
Table VI.—Summary of Degrees and Training of Professional Staff
as at March 31st, 1954
Masters of Social Work	
Second year of training but M.S.W. thesis not completed
Bachelor of Social Work	
Social Service diploma	
One year at School but no diploma or degree	
Two years at School but no diploma or degree	
In-service trainees now at School1	
In-service trained	
„.,,. _,  ..
1 In addition to those now enrolled at the School of Social Work, four in-service trained staff members completed
their first year of study this year.
The figures relative to in-service trained staff shown in Tables V and VI above
require comment. Until this year, the Branch has been able to maintain a ratio of three
professionally trained appointments to one in-service trained appointment. The situation
with regard to the lowered enrolment in Canadian schools of social work has affected the
Branch as it has many other agencies. Besides the reduction in supply of social-work
graduates, there are other well-known conditions affecting the supply of trained personnel,
which need not be reviewed here.
The facts are such, however, that the Branch has had to set up its in-service training
programme to the extent that in this fiscal year thirty-nine people have received or begun
such training in four separate classes.
New Training Plan
The need for increasing the Branch's own staff-training programme this year, and
probably for the next few years, suggested that the best possible efforts be expended to
prepare the trainee for his demanding work. The field consultants, together with the
Training Supervisor, accordingly worked out a new scheme of training which is a considerable improvement over the former plan.
The trainees were formerly appointed at varying times, as need arose. After the
latest to be appointed had had at least two months' experience in the field, all returned
to Vancouver for a four-week instructional period. The burden of orienting new trainees
to the work of the Branch thus fell upon the already heavily pressed district supervisor,
and the early days of employment were spent in individual study.
The new scheme necessitates that all new trainees needed at any one time start their
employment on the same date. For example, the first class conducted under this new
plan filled ten vacancies for the months of September and October. This group, as
others recruited in this year, remained in Vancouver for four weeks, during which the
Training Supervisor conducted a thorough orientation to the work. Included in this
orientation were sessions devoted to a study of the legislation, administration, policies,
and procedures of the Branch and sessions in which professional concepts were discussed
in an introductory way. .| #
Following this orientation period, these trainees dispersed to district offices and
were able to begin work on the day of their arrival. This second part of the training
scheme is four months in duration. The trainees have responsibility for a case load and
learn the job by doing it under the teaching guidance of their supervisors. At the end
of this four months' practice work, the group reconvenes in Vancouver for a second
four weeks. During this period they study the separate parts of the work under the
direction of divisional heads and consultants.
J   lo
t.   •   itfi trainina period has been completed in this fiscal year.
One such six months   W P» ^ fesults have ^
Although one or ^.^^XfrneTcost' this scheme is accomplishing its objective of
of this new plan. Without any further costs, un
way to oe consiucrou a» a ^nddered to be of the greatest importance.
to obtain professional traimng is still considered 10 oe ui       gg r
Two bursaries were awarded to two in-service trained staff members in this fiscal
year' Supervisors' Institute
The importance of developing the skills and abilities of the supervisory staff cannot
be overestimated. This year an institute was held in Vancouver in which.both district
and divisional supervisors participated. Miss Marjone Smith, Director of the School of
Social Work University of British Columbia, conducted a stimulating refresher course
on the subject of Diagnostic Skills in Social Casework. Using cases drawn from the
everyday practice of the Branch, this course was most practical and helpful, the presence
of divisional supervisors in addition making for a decidedly useful co-ordination of
thinking and learning.
These short refresher courses have two values: they teach those whose duty it is to
have and to apply new and old knowledge of professional concepts and methods; they
help materially to build the kind of morale that is needed to carry on the heavy work of
supervision in both near and remote parts of the Province. They repay the expenditures
involved in terms of knowledge gained and loyalty cemented.
Staff Bulletin
In conformity with Government policy to issue a news bulletin covering the total
services of the Provincial Government, it was necessary to cease publication of " British
Columbia's Welfare." At the date of its cessation it had been published for ten full
years. Scores of letters testifying to the value of this journal were received from social
workers across Canada, the United States, and other countries, as well as from our own
Planning Council
This year bi-monthly meetings of the Planning Council were inaugurated, held in
Victoria. Preceding each Council meeting the regional administrators now regularly hold
a day-long meeting in which to share administrative problems of concern to the regions.
The Director of Welfare attends these meetings, and divisional heads may be requested
to attend when administrative matters connected with divisional policies are discussed.
The Planning Council has completed several studies in this past year. Of these, the
brief: to the Civil Service Commission regarding staff matters-job classifications, staff
S;f!S; s^^^^ and salaries-was one of the most comprehensive.
aTJ^L Tf Y' S US\°f the S0dal Service Index> was also completed, the General
bsSSruL^? *? r°m^nd^0n that the Ind** be usedon a selective basis
S^t toX^nS^S^' ThlSflective registration of cases will greatly reduce
Sx£ m^^^T SerV1Ce-- StUdiGS mentioned * *e opening section of this
report are being continued or are neanng completion.
|    ug experience in the service of this Branch.   This year her
activities have been confined to the on-going task of handling field statistics and to serving
on the committees examining the statistical and procedural operations of the field staff.
Her editing of the Annual Report of the Branch and her assumption of the office of secretary to the Planning Council have greatly facilitated these official activities.
Branch Pamphlet
A committee under the chairmanship of this office was set up this year to develop
interpretive material suitable for distribution to the public. Though the field staff does
a commendable job of public interpretation in the local communities, a large part of the
public is still unaware of the services for which they are paying. Casual sampling of
public opinion, especially the response of groups of people seeing the Branch film,
" Friend at the Door," has indicated the gratification and endorsation of the public of the
value and importance of the Provincial social worker.
The committee, composed of the Chief Field Consultant, Research Consultant, and
Training Supervisor, has had the competent help of the Department's public relations
office in drafting an interpretive pamphlet. This should be ready for distribution in time
for the Pacific National Exhibition in August, 1954. It is hoped that other such
interpretive material can be prepared in succeeding years.
Once again, this year the United Nations Fellowship programme has utilized the
Branch as a teaching unit for Fellows from three distant nations—China, Israel, and
Australia. The stimulation these engaging people have brought has been great, and, in
their turn, they have acknowledged the helpfulness to their countries which their study
of Branch services has brought them.
The year under review has been characterized by serious attempts to examine with
renewed vigilance the total operation of far-flung staff. The objective has been to reduce
as far as possible the extraordinary demands made upon hard-pressed staff and at the
same time to ensure that uniformity of practice and procedures is maintained. This is
one agency, not many. While community needs and demands differ from region to
region, the goal of service, function and purpose, is the same throughout the Province.
The remainder of this Annual Report will substantiate this fact, and also impress upon
the reader the essential nature of the many parts of generalized social welfare services.
It is the people of the Province who benefit. It is the people's welfare that is the concern
of the Branch.   The total staff is dedicated to this idea.
Respectfully submitted. -* ife -
(Miss) Amy Leigh,
Assistant Director of Welfare.
 J 20
I   s A. ,nn,,al reoort for the fiscal year 1953-54, which outlines
I beg to submit the annual report I q£ ^ g^ ^^ fir
statistical information and gives a resume 01 me
" g& been no change ^X^^^^**
EnHn^^S^^^are mils with an estimated population
°f ^S^^^S' and tourist travel are the major industries, with fishing, dairy
and chicken farming secondary industries. j
With a staff of twenty-nine social workers and four supervisors, we are providing
welfare services and aid to 11,091 cases as at March 31st 1954. These services are
rendered from seven administrative offices (five Provincial and two municipal). Without
too detailed a breakdown, Table I shows the major categories of services rendered and
the number of cases coming under the direction of each office.
Table I.—Analysis of Case Load1 by Major Categories of Services in the District
Administrative Offices of Region I as at March 31st, 1954
Family Service  	
Mothers' Allowance
—   ;
Social Allowance
Blind Persons' Allowance
Old-age Assistance ... .....  —
Old Age Security .	
Child Welfare-
Institutions and other
1 Case load is the total of family units and shared services.
A comparison with the case load for the corresponding period of a year ago shows
there is an increase of 105 cases. However, during the year under review there were
2,301 new cases brought to our attention for services. This figure of 2,301 new cases,
against the small increase of 105 cases, indicates the heavy turnover of cases which faced
the staff, both field workers and clerical workers. The processing of applications for
Old-age Assistance and Old Age Security bonus and health services predominated, there
being 660 such applications in the region. Requests from persons for financial aid
comprised the second largest number.
The Family Service and Child Welfare case load was relatively high, and within
tlus group were found the most complex and time-consuming problems. As March 31st,
l™~ Sffr <TU CMd?n aS Wards and awards under supervision in foster
cSS £1,5L°?S7 T/t °?tl0n Pr0bati0n" These numbers do not include children
VktoilfTuSv S?SiJ?Ct°nacarea' as thi° area comes under the jurisdiction of the
maSed moS S, SSTh'ifT"*-   During the year **" werc ninety-eight *
Those mothers wishing o keep theirSi * ^ pl&Ced °n ad°Pti°n ^^l
eases, efforts were made toobtS fin.n    .^ aSS1Sted t0 make Suitable ^   \*
by voluntary agrcem^l^Srf^ aSS1St3nCe ^ ^ ^^ ^^ **
Jjjr- Of the 164 children in foster homes, referred to above, many of them were removed
from neglecting parents under the " Protection of Children Act." Eddy F. is one of
these youngsters, and his story, recorded briefly here, illustrates the nature of preventive services. Eddy, now 7, was made a ward of the Superintendent of Child Welfare
at the age of 5. His father had deserted the mother sometime previously, and the
mother's behaviour was such that when she was committed to gaol, Eddy had to be
apprehended. Due to Eddy's neglect by his parents, he evidenced serious behaviour
difficulties which necessitated considerable work by the social worker with the boy
himself and careful selection of suitable foster-parents. After several placements, Eddy
is now in a home where he can remain permanently and receive the love and security of
a family he can gradually call his own. -I§-      #-
A major problem continues to be the elderly person unable to care for himself.
There are still only limited facilities within the region; however, finding accommodation
suitable for the individual's infirmities is only part of the problem. Additional services
required include financial arrangements, transportation, proper medical attention, dealing
with relatives, and preparing the oft-times independent old person resisting placement.
Sources of referrals are neighbours, relatives, doctors, hospitals, police, and other. A
case example will illustrate the above points. #
One of the pensioners, Mrs. D., an elderly widow with no relatives, lived alone in
an isolated location. The local doctor and neighbours were alarmed because Mrs. D.
was on the verge of being mentally disturbed, was suspicious and mistrustful, and refusing
any form of care. She was not eating properly, and her cottage was cold and dirty. The
community demanded action of the Branch. The social worker called and found Mrs. D.
extremely suspicious and unco-operative. It took considerable time to gain Mrs. D.'s
confidence, but this was accomplished, and, with the help of the doctor, arrangements
were made for Mrs. D.'s immediate care in one of the licensed boarding homes. With
proper care in the home, medical attention, and the continued interest of the social
worker, Mrs. D. improved mentally and physically to a point where she was again able
to manage her own affairs. Rather than return to her isolated cottage, she moved to a
small centre where she had a few friends in whom her former interest had been revived.
Thus, it is believed that timely action by the community and social worker prevented a
probable mental or physical breakdown requiring costly institutional care.
As at March 31st, 1954, there were 417 persons who were receiving care in nursing
and boarding homes for whom the Branch contributes toward maintenance costs. The
majority of private hospitals and welfare institutions operating in the region are privately
The organized territory of the region has a population of 155,513 people, and
within this organized area lie twenty-three municipalities (eight cities, five district municipalities, and ten villages). '        iP
Two of the municipalities have amalgamated social welfare offices, Victoria City
and the Municipality of Saanich, while out of the remaining twenty-one municipalities
fourteen are served from the Provincial Social Welfare Branch offices and pay toward
the cost of the services on a per capita charge of 15 cents. There are seven villages
exempt from payment for the welfare services, due to small land-tax revenue.
The following table shows the status of the areas in the region (under the " Social
Assistance Act") regarding social welfare administration, and also figures on population (1951 Census) and welfare case loads in the area.
 J 22
Table II.-Analysis of Case Loads* in the Municipalities of Region I as Related to tk
Administrative Plan (Section 6 of the Regulations under the Social Assistance
Act") as at Marvh-SlM 1954.	
1951 Census
Welfare Services
Case Load
Village of Campbell River.
CSty of Cumberland	
City of Courtenay	
City of Port Alberni	
City of Alberni	
City of Nanaimo	
City Of Ladysmith.
Municipality of North Cowichan.
City of Duncan	
Village of Lake Cowichan.
Vfllage of Qualicum Beach.
Municipality of Esquimalt-
Municipality of Central Saanich.
Municipality of Oak Bay	
Municipality of Saanich	
City of Victoria.!
Village of Alert Bay-
Village of Comox	
Village of Parksville.
Village of Sidney	
Village of Tofino	
Village of Ucluelet	
Village of Zeballos	
Case load in organized territory	
Case load in unorganized territory-
Total case load for region.
1 Case loads are the total of family units and shared services.
H The Welfare Branch launch, M.V. " Shiely," with skipper and accompanying social
worker, travelled approximately 6,000 nautical miles in servicing the persons who reside
m the northern section of the region and in the Gulf Islands which are only accessible
by water.
Economic conditions during the summer were very good. The reason was that there
was little unemployment in the forestry and lumbering industry in that weather continued
satisfactory for field operations, there being shut-downs only of short duration. However,
at the turn of the year and through the early spring, conditions worsened and the Unemployment Insurance Commission reported the highest number shown of persons receiving
unemployment insurance benefits.
In conclusion, may I say that the members of the Branch in the region, in co-
f|Berat*on with municipal employees, have, during the year immediately past, conscientiously endeavoured to meet the needs of the persons requiring our services I gratefully
acknowledge the co-operation given by other agencies, private and voluntary, who have
m numerous ways been helpful.
Respectfully submitted.
Regional Administrator.
I beg to submit the following report of the activities of the Social Welfare Branch
in Region II for the fiscal year 1953-54:—
The geographic boundaries of the region were the same as last year. The area
covered included the west coast of the Province north to and including Ocean Falls as
well as the Lower Mainland to the Pitt River on the north side of the Fraser River and
the Municipality of Delta on the south side of the Fraser River.
One new municipal office was established during the year. On September 1st,
1953, Coquitlam Municipality opened an office in the Municipal Hall, Maillardville.
When this office was opened, the Provincial Department ceased to carry the social work
on the per capita payment basis. Two workers were transferred to Coquitlam from the
Provincial district office, New Westminster.
Until the opening of the Coquitlam office, one supervisor had handled the work for
both the New Westminster city and district offices. However, with a third office established, supervisory duties had to be rearranged. A supervisor was placed in the New
Westminster city office, with another supervisor taking over the duties in the Coquitlam
and New Westminster district offices.
Many staff changes took place during the year. The North Vancouver and Richmond staffs were increased by one social worker in each case, with the cost being borne
on the usual municipal-provincial shareable basis. As well, the Westview staff was
increased by one worker. The administrator-supervisor position in Burnaby was broken
down into two positions, and a supervisor was placed in that municipality.
In February, 1954, the New Westminster district office was moved from the Courthouse to the Gyro Health Centre at Sixth Street and Carnarvon. This placed the district
health and welfare services in one centre.
The work in connection with the rehabilitation of people continued this year. Many
individuals-were provided with training of various kinds in order to overcome handicaps
which had necessitated the use of public funds for their support. The extra money used
for this type of retraining will be more than repaid as the majority of these people are
now self-supporting and no longer in need of financial help. For example, a woman
and two children were in receipt of Social Allowance as the husband and father had died,
leaving no assets. The social worker assisted the woman in replanning and helped her
explore the possibility of using her teacher's training, which she had obtained prior to her
marriage. Although she had obtained her training in another Province and had not
used it for many years, a plan was worked out for her to take certain courses in order
to qualify for a position here. The municipality and Province participated in the cost of
the tuition, and she completed the necessary courses. A position as a teacher was located
near her home, and the family has become a self-supporting unit in the community.
Another case, which concerned a man, his wife, and seven children, was much more
involved and expensive to handle. In the man's youth he had suffered from a disease
which weakened one leg. He recovered and was able to support himself and subsequently his family by doing heavy labouring work. Last year the disease recurred and
crippled him to the extent that he could walk only with a cane, and the condition will
never improve. Completely unskilled, no longer able to do labouring work, destitute
and discouraged, the man applied for Social Allowance for himself and his family. After
some months when a complete assessment of the family strengths had been made and
aptitude tests on the man had been finalized, it was decided that he should be trained
at the Vancouver Vocational Institute, with the municipality and the Province sharing
the cost. Long-term planning was needed as the course covered a twelve-month period.
He completed the course with honours, but due to his particular type of handicap and
the lack of employment at the time he finished the course, he cotild not find a position.
After reviewing the situation with officials in his chosen field, it was decided to give him
an extra three months' course in order to broaden his abilities. When this was com.
pleted, he found employment, and the public was no longer supporting nine people as
the family was once again self-supporting.
There has been no improvement in the nursing-home situation during the past year,
One nursing home with 15 beds closed, while another one with 25 beds opened. This
gain of 10 beds made little improvement in the over-all picture, and more nursing-home
beds were urgently required or the general hospitals in this region were going to be sen-
ously affected this year.
During the past winter the employment picture caused concern. All offices in the
region met requests for assistance from destitute unemployed employable individuals,
Many of these people had not obtained sufficient work during the year to establish credits
for unemployment insurance. Others, who normally were able to save enough money
to carry them through the winter months, had not been able to find steady employment
throughout the spring, summer, and fall, and thus were destitute. Another factor which
helped to worsen the situation was the strike amongst the woodworkers in the Interior
of the Province. As the strike continued, a goodly number of men drifted to the Vancouver area seeking employment, which, of course, was not available. The past winter's
unemployment experience would indicate, if economic conditions have not shown a
marked improvement, the situation could be serious during the winter of 1954-55.
Respectfully submitted.
J. A. Sadler,
Regional Administrator.
I beg to submit the following report, which gives a summary of the activities of the
Social Welfare Branch in Region III for the fiscal year 1953-54:— |
There have been no changes in the geographical boundaries in this region during
the year, nor were there any new offices opened. Likewise, the four largest municipalities
continued to have their own welfare officers, and the other fourteen smaller organized
territories received their social services from the Provincial staff on the per capita basis,
Since the last report, one social worker each has been added to the Penticton and Kam-
loops offices. While the field staff has been increased from fourteen to sixteen Provincial
social workers, the clerical staff has been reduced from fifteen to fourteen. During the
year the servicing of the Revelstoke area was changed from the Salmon Arm office to
Vernon, when one of the social workers and a stenographer were transferred to the
Vernon district office. This change resulted in a better distribution of the field work
and, as aforementioned, the saving of one stenographer in the over-all picture. By adding
the two social workers it has been possible to reduce and reorganize the case loads so
that they were manageable to a much greater degree. Case loads were still large, but
with industriousness, organization, and careful selection, it has been possible to give an
unproved quality of service to the client.
During the year 9,565 cases received some form of social services. The cases drawing Social Allowance declined steadily from April, 1953, to and including September.
. e fr figure commenced to rise, and there were actually fifty more cases receiving Social Allowance at the end of the fiscal year than there were at the beginning. There
was practically no change in the Mothers' Allowance case load during the year.
™a Jhe eUmber °f Persons drawing Blind Persons' Allowance, Old-age Assistance, d
2 + At Security cost-of-living bonuses at the end of the year was almost identical to
that of the first of the year. In other words, there were sufficient new and transferred-*
pensioners to offset the number closed during the fiscal year
There has been a steady increase in the number of children being cared for in foster
homes in this region. At the commencement of this fiscal year there were 271 children
in care, and 301 by the end of March, 1954. m
When dealing with people, the social worker must be realistic and expect some failures along with successes. There are families who, to our knowledge, have been receiving social services for the past twenty years or more with little improvement having been
accomplished. Whilst twenty years ago there was the problem of assisting financially the
unmarried mother, to-day there is the problem of finding foster homes for several of the
grandchildren. Fortunately, there are not too many people who are unable to respond
in a more socially and personally adequate way. The understanding of the causes of
illegitimacy and the skills for its treatment have developed considerably in the past two
decades. Discouraging as the results of some of the case-histories, past and some present
ones also, may be, social workers to-day do get encouragement and real satisfaction from
the fact they do know better how to help people. They need only more training and more
time—that is, smaller case loads—to do the casework job that they see needs doing.
Briefly, the following case-histories illustrate some of the successes achieved by the individuals and the social workers concerned, but only by much careful and conscientious
planning and working through the problems together.
About six years ago a boy was taken into care at the age of 15 as a result of a
broken home and inadequate supervision by his mother, with whom he had been living.
This boy had been entirely without discipline and got into difficulties with the police on
account of theft, and was committed to the Boys' Industrial School for a period of time.
Following his discharge he returned to a foster home in this area and seemed to have
profited immensely from his stay at the School. He adjusted well to his foster home and
made excellent progress at school, where he remained until completion of Grade XII.
Following this he obtained employment as a clerk in a local store and was endeavouring
to save a sufficient amount of money from his earnings in order to take a course in radio
sending and receiving.-tin order to make it possible for this youth to take his radio
course sooner than would otherwise have been possible, a loan was arranged from the
Youth Anonymous Fund to supplement the boy's savings. He now has a certificate of
proficiency in radio, and his achievement and marks were considered to be somewhat
phenomenal. He has repaid the loan and is employed by the Air Service Section of the
Department of Transport. |Jfi
Excellent progress also has been made by a girl who has been in our care, and in
the same foster home, since she was a baby. She has completed Grade XIII at school,
and will enrol at the Provincial Normal School in the fall, and will take her final piano
examination for the A.T.C.M. degree next spring.
Ruth, who was born in April, 1931, applied for Social Allowance in February, 1953.
She had a Grade XII education and has been a diabetic for ten years. She had never
been able to take any employment and even found baby-sitting too much for her. Just
previous to applying for Social Allowance she had been hospitalized when she fell into
a very severe diabetic coma and was unconscious for a long time. Medically it was considered doubtful if she would ever be | employable in the true sense of the word." She
lived in the home of an uncle and aunt, life with her own family being too strenuous on
account of the other children. The worker recognized her as a sick girl but felt she dwelt
too much on her ills and perhaps had been pampered a bit. I The social worker visited
frequently and encouraged participation in handicrafts and tried to minimize the girl's
concern for her health. The relatives have been a great help recently as they now look
on Ruth as a normal person and have encouraged her to look forward to taking training
for employment. Recently Ruth went to the doctor, and he has reported her diabetes
under good control. She has discussed with the doctor about taking a stenographic
course or a receptionist course. He thought she should be able to stand steady normal
hours.   The situation has now reached the point where a plan for training will have to be
worked out. Financial help with a course will probably be necessary. This girl did weH
S^Tshe has come a long way in the past year, and with a little more help will likely
be self-supporting before the end of another year.
The region has been attempting as far as possible to improve coverage and service
through e|o£ co-operation and selectivity of cases with public health nurses, school
counsellors, and chad guidance clinic.   An attempt has been made to give careful d-
nosis of problems, and then to extend a limited service only where the situation was
which would not likely respond to full and continuous treatment.
There has seemed to be an ever-increasing number of deserted wives and famiL
where the husband has been committed to gaol for drinking and theft, and various other
offences stemming from general irresponsibility. Assistance was given to each of the
families, but more efforts were made to have the man interviewed through other agencies
or the Court in the hope the experience might be used constructively toward helping him
realize his responsibility. Through family casework and by means of the co-operative
services of housekeepers, Big Brothers, and interested people in the community, more
children have been kept in their own homes, and thus breakdown in family life has been
A mother with two small children applied for assistance last January when her
husband was committed to gaol in Alberta for six months as they had British Columbia
residence. She and her children returned to her parents in the Okanagan. Her parents
were unable to support her and the children, and she was given temporary Social Allowance. It was arranged for the prison officials in Alberta to interview the husband regarding rehabilitation. The interview with the man was handled in a sympathetic, constructive manner, and while it might not be possible to change his pattern of delinquent
behaviour, he could not help benefiting from the fact he would realize he had the support
of his family, the prison officials, and the community generally in any plans he had to
" go straight." The man made plans for re-establishing his wife and children in Alberta,
where he was promised a job and housing through the efforts of his father on his release
from gaol.
Generally speaking, economic conditions remained reasonably good throughout the
region. Employers, however, did show some signs of more caution, which resulted in a
certain number of employable unemployed persons requiring temporary assistance during
the winter months. ■
The region has experienced little difficulty in locating private homes in the various'
communities which will provide boarding-home care to ambulatory elderly persons,
The region, however, has continued to experience difficulty in locating accommodations
for persons requiring bed care. A suitable plan for the caring of chronic persons has
become the most pressing need of the region. With regard to children, the social workers
have been successful in having sufficient foster homes available. They did have difficulty,
however, m securing suitable foster homes for children of mixed racial origin. They have
stated, also, that a treatment centre for emotionally disturbed teen-age boys and girls
who have not fitted into a normal foster home was another vital need. I
The Branch has continued to receive much help from local service clubs and community organizations Without this assistance the work would be much more difficult
Considerable sums of money have been spent by the various local service clubs on local
projects. They have been most generous when contacted by any of the social workers
who have approached them to get help for special needs. The local resources of the
communities have been developing steadily, and each passing year has shown a greater
233?^ ^ them'    %e co"^rationgof the municipalities an
S^to^^^T0^ °f,gremment ^s been excellent and has been most
neiprui to tne stall in the course of their daily tasks
Respectfully submitted. j | j ^^
Regional Administrator.
I beg to submit the following annual report, which outlines the activities of the
Social Welfare Branch in Region IV during the fiscal year 1953-54:—
The geographical boundaries were the same as in previous years. The population
increased in most districts, resulting in greater responsibilities and volume of work for
the Branch in giving adequate coverage to the case load.
As of April 1st, 1953, the case load was 5,054, including shared services. On
March 31st, 1954, the total load was 5,243. There were 2,846 cases opened, reopened,
or transferred in, and 2,647 closed or transferred out. The net increase for the year was
199 cases, an average increase of 16.5833 cases per month. The breakdown of the case
load is as follows: Old-age group, 60 per cent approximately; Child Welfare, 12 per
cent approximately; Social and Mothers' Allowances, 22 per cent approximately; Family
Service, 4 per cent approximately; miscellaneous categories, 2 per cent.
The number of municipalities which, under the provisions of the " Village Municipalities Act," were obligated to contribute to welfare costs was increased by two in this
region during the year. For the purposes of welfare services, both Warfield and Castle-
gar accepted the per capita plan whereby the Branch will look after the social work
within the municipalities on the basis of 15 cents per capita of population per annum.
The village in each case administered through the Village Commission and the Village
Clerk. In this region all organized areas were on the per capita rate, with the Branch
servicing the case load and the local areas administering.
Employment conditions generally were not as good as in previous years. Due to
the drop in the price of base metals, quite a few of the smaller mines closed down entirely
and some of the larger ones curtailed activities. This resulted in many men being laid
off, and as there was no chance of getting mine work in this area, quite a few left for
other places where it was felt there were better prospects. § The Consolidated Mining and
Smelting Company also laid off quite a few men, and while some of them were rehired,
it meant that their yearly income was reduced.
The other major industry—namely, lumbering—was fairly good, although heavy
snows, resulting in a late spring, delayed commencement of logging operations at the
higher levels. This, along with the woodworkers' strike during the winter months, curtailed the earnings of those engaged in the lumbering industry.
These factors, plus the over-all slackening-off in industrial operations throughout
the Province, resulted in greater demands being made upon the Branch. The extension
of time for unemployment insurance benefits helped somewhat, but it still left many men
with families in unfortunate circumstances. Dealing with this group proved to be time-
consuming for both the social workers and clerical staff, yet general case coverage was
maintained fairly well throughout the year.
Within this region is Mount St. Francis at Nelson, which can provide nursing-home
care for ninety-eight people. It is serving such a large area that there is a waiting-list
most of the time. The service given is good, and the general feeling of the patients is one
of satisfaction. The general public, certain service clubs, and other organizations are
gradually increasing their interest and participation, with resultant benefit to cases in
Mount St. Francis.
The Nelson Hostel, a boarding home for aged men operated by the City of Nelson,
fills a much-needed want, and the atmosphere in this home is quite a happy one. It is
well managed, and local organizations, such as the Imperial Order of the Daughters of
the Empire, etc., have certain projects which they carry through for the benefit and
pleasure of the residents of the hostel.
In Cranbrook the housing project for pensioners, started some years ago, is proving
the foresight of service clubs, the City Council, and interested citizens.
 j 28 -  $jj  BRITISH COLUMBIA
There are some independent boarding homes which care for individual cases, but
the need for both boarding- and nursing-home care is constantly on the increase. Many
of the old-age group, while realizing that they need special care are loath to leave the
areas where they have lived for years, where relatives and friends of long standing are
^^ Every year increases the interest shown by service clubs and other local groups in
the welfare programme. This increasing interest is largely the result of interpretation of
the needs of the area and of the boundaries of the framework within which we function
by members of the staff to the various communities. Members of the staff during the
past year have spoken to numerous service clubs, church groups, high-school students,
Women's Institutes, and othdr similar organizations. Keen interest has been shown by
these groups in the Branch programme, and their help and co-operation are a real indication of their desire to help those less fortunate than themselves and to promote general
welfare in their own areas. /..
The many and diversified problems faced by the workers call for constant application to the job and point up the need for workers to have the fullest training possible plus
general all-round experience to fit them for the job. During the year the region was
short three workers for six months but had the full complement necessary for the remaining six months. Any shortage of staff makes more work for the remaining workers, with
the result that time is not available for more concentrated efforts.
Throughout the year, members of the staff continued to try to rehabilitate as many
of their cases as possible. This particular phase of the work is handicapped by the fact
that many work opportunities available in other areas are not available in Region IV,
The main industries are mining, lumbering, and farming, all of which require workers
of high physical standards. However, wherever the possibility of re-establishing anyone
on a self-supporting basis existed, either wholly or partially, the effort has been made.
The objective hoped for has not been achieved in all such cases, but the results have been
well worth the effort.
An example of a successful rehabilitation case was Mrs. A. December 31st, 1953,
was a red-letter day for her, for on that day Mrs. A. became self-supporting after fifteen
years of almost unbroken financial dependency. Tuberculosis of Mr. A. and for a few
months of Mrs. A. had enforced the A.'s (father and mother and four children) to accept
Social Allowance for all that time. Following Mr. A.'s death in July, 1953, Mrs. A, in
consultation with the social worker and regional administrator, used the insurance money
to make the home saleable. Then with the proceeds of the sale she moved to a larger
centre, where she got a job adequate for the support of herself and the remaining dependent daughter. The supportive and concrete help of the social workers had reinforced
Mrs. A.'s own spirit of independence so that she was able to make full use of the opportunity, when it came, to become self-supporting again.
Throughout the year the Branch has had the fullest co-operation from municipal,
Provincial, and Federal Government bodies, as well as local organizations. Through
their co-operation and support, the task was made lighter and the whole region benefited,
Respectfully submitted.
*-,.   l|t J. W. Smith,
Regional Administrator.
aWlffi&SJS&S^ "» acWfe °f «- Social Welfare *•>
'1*1 __»•«• :KjK
JX "pi«ar rr^rtsnvv'" rcgi°*wMch m -<
w u* ui me rrovince.    The tax revenue of two municipality
Kitimat and Smithers, rose above $12,500, and they assumed responsibility for their
share of welfare costs as of January 1st, 1954. There are now six municipalities in
Region V which are paying their share of their own welfare costs and for whom the
Social Welfare Branch is providing welfare services on a 15-cents-per-capita basis. It is
expected that the Villages of Williams Lake and Fort St. John will also go on per capita
basis next year.
The Smithers district office was moved from rented quarters to larger accommodation in the Court-house building, and extra space was rented for the Williams Lake office.
This took care of an increase in professional staff of two social workers and one supervisor.
With the increase in population there was more unemployment throughout the
region this year. The three-month Prince George lumber strike had a considerable effect
on the economy of the Central Interior. This, combined with the wet spring, which further
affected the lumber industry and agriculture, tended to increase the unemployment during
the latter part of the fiscal year. Unemployment, together with increased population,
had its effect on the Social Allowance case load. Many of those who applied for Social
Allowance were in the border-line group of unemployable persons. They were not
acceptable to employers because the scarcity of jobs made available more suitable
employees. II ,df'
The general increase in population was evident in the increase in Child Welfare
and Old-age Assistance groups. Services to other divisions, branches, and institutions
decreased. | One of the reasons for this was the necessity to curtail services because of
increased case loads.
Following is a comparison of total case loads for the region by categories, as of
March, 1953, and March, 1954:—||Jf |;       |g| §
Comparison of Case Load1 by Categories, of Region V, as at March 31st,
for the Years 1953 and 1954 tf
Category of Service March, 1953 March, 1954
Family Service  243                        242
|g   Mothers'Allowance          7 7
Social Allowance      614 |t           788
      621       795
Jf          Blind Persons'Allowance        65 62
aK      Old-age Assistance      433 478
Old Age Security bonus  1,357 1,358
f   1,855   1,898    '
Adoption homes pending        89 90
Adoption homes approved        27 36#
Children in adoption homes      104 113
Children in care      169 176
Foster homes pending        36 51
Foster homes approved        98 101
Protection of children        66§^ 60
.:i|          Unmarried parents, children of.        85 88
      674       715
Special services  2                            3
Jj Tuberculosis Division        36§j 38
Child Guidance Clinic      2
Crease Clinic        16 10
Carried forward        52 3,395 50 3,653
1 Case load is the total of family units and services.
 J 30
1 _     . _                                                        March, 1953 March, 1954
Category of Service «  *
Brought forward-        ■>* j,j*j *>u j,odj
Provincial Mental Hospital       24 15
Collections         m '
Hospital clearance          * 2
Provincial Homes         ^ 5
Provincial Infirmary          6 4
Welfare institutions        12 16
      137      109
Totals \  3>532 3>762
Although the net increase in case load was 230, there were actually 3,404
services put into operation and 3,174 closed during the year. The high turnover in case
load is a general indication of the amount of work completed. This, together with the
changes in staff during the year and the vast distances and travel conditions, made it
difficult for the field staff to carry out their duties properly. It was particularly noticeable
in the area of child welfare services, where more time should have been spent. Further
increases in staff are required.
The staff continued to improve their knowledge and methods of rehabilitation,
A meeting of the staff was held in Prince George on September 30th and October 1st
and 2nd. Although many problems were discussed by the staff, at their own request a
particular stucfy was made of the reasons for granting Social Allowance and how the
allowance and casework services were meeting the needs of the people, and also how
they might be used most effectively and economically for the purpose for which they were
intended. The staff benefited considerably from this meeting, and it was more than ever
evident that rehabilitation should begin with the first contact. Reviews of cases done
prior to the meeting provided the information necessary for the various papers presented
Throughout the studies it was evident that about two-thirds of the allowances granted
were to the older age-group or persons for whom there was little possibility of rehabilitation. The remaining one-third were capable of rehabilitation. All the studies bore out
this fact. One study was made of a district office where a total of forty-four cases were
discontinued during a certain period of time. Of these, fifteen reached pension age,
twelve transferred out of the district (presumably still in need of assistance), and three
went to Provincial institutions. Therefore, a total of approximately 68 per cent continued
to receive some form of public assistance. Fourteen or approximately 32 per cent became self-supporting.  A brief look at those who commenced employment showed that:—
(1) A man of 60, over the winter months, regained his health and obtained
light employment. ff
(2) A young family man was sufficiently recovered from tuberculosis to return
to his former job.
(3) Social Allowance was cancelled when a man made a false and incomplete
declaration of income. He obtained a job within his abilities and has
worked steadily since.
(4) The case of an independent 76-year-old man not eligible to receive Old
Age Security. He managed to make enough money in the summer to last
Mft Mid his wife all winter. However, Social Allowance must be granted
(5) A client who received extensive medical attention recovered from rheumatic fever and became re-employed.
(6) A young woman was unable to carry on employment until she had recovered from a serious fracture.
(7) A young family man, thought to have cancer, was rushed to Vancouver,
and after extensive diagnostic services a glandular tuberculous condition
was discovered, after which extensive medication resulted in complete
(8) After moving from the Coast as a severe asthmatic, this family man and
five dependents became self-supporting. Rest and medical treatment
combined to effect at least a temporary cure.
(9) A young woman was able to become self-supporting after undergoing a
surgical operation.
(10) A serious eye-disease permanently crippled this client, but a fortunate
timber sale on his property might give the necessary funds to establish full
independence for this man, whose wife suffers from chronic anaemia and
whose only daughter has Bright's disease.
(11) A mentally inadequate person with a large family began to earn a living,
made possible only by reason of good times such as these.
(12) An alcoholic rejoined his family and was making a new attempt to "stay
on the wagon."
(13) and (14) Two women married.     A; #
It was felt that, if more time could be spent on these cases, the rehabilitation process
could have been speeded up.
Finally, it should be noted that there were still no nursing homes and only one
limited boarding home to serve the older people in this region. Small nursing and
boarding homes located throughout the area in the larger centres would meet the needs
of the older citizens, allowing them to remain in the environment in which they have lived
and be near their relatives and friends.
Respectfully submitted. jj|
R. I. Stringer,
Regional Administrator.
I beg to submit the following annual report of the activities of the Social Welfare
Branch in Region VI for the fiscal year 1953-54:—
This has been a year of growth for Region VI, located in the thriving, rapidly growing
Fraser Valley. This growth was evidenced by an increase in municipal offices, case loads,
and staff.
In regard to municipal offices, the Village of Harrison Hot Springs was required to
assume responsibility for its share of welfare costs, making a total of thirteen such municipalities within the region. The municipal office at Cloverdale was finding difficulty in
meeting the needs of this large and growing municipality from its central location, and
serious consideration was being given to decentralization of this office.
The total regional case load was increased by 458 cases during the year and reached
7,286 cases by March 31st, 1954. The largest increase occurred in the Family Service,
Social Allowance, and Child Welfare categories. The work entailed in this case load
could best be statistically described by the intake (new cases) of 3,570 cases during the
year, and a total of 10,398 cases carried as active during this period. The intake amounted
to 34 per cent of the total cases carried.
The child-in-care population has shown a striking increase during the past two years,
having risen from 152 children in March, 1952, to 252 as of March 31st, 1954. This
increase of 100 children was partly due to the transfer from the Vancouver Children's
Aid Society of forty-one children in the Langley area.   There were ninety-nine children
admitted to care within the region during the year; forty-one of these were those t%
ferred from the Children's Aid Society, eighteen were apprehended under the « Protection
of Children Act," thirty-seven admitted as non-wards, and three children committed under
the," Juvenile Delinquents Act." .     ,. «      j
This increase in case load necessitated an increase in staff, and an additional social
worker was placed in the Langley Municipal office, making a total staff of twenty-three i
the region at the end of the year. Two additional social workers will be required to tale
care of the heavy increase in case load in the Chilliwack and Surrey areas.
The turnover in staff was much less serious this year, there having been only six
replacements as compared to thirteen in 1952-53.
Despite the sound economy within the Fraser Valley, this area experienced a pro.
portionate amount of unemployment during the past winter and early spring. This was,
of course, reflected in the case loads, and during this period it was necessary to grant
financial assistance to eighty-two cases where the bread-winner was an unemployed
employable, while only thirty-four such cases were assisted during the same period last
year. The majority of cases assisted were those of families where the fathers did not
request assistance until their funds were completely exhausted and all employment
resources had been tapped. It is hoped that by next winter an adequate plan will be
established to meet this unemployment situation should it recur, as many families suffered
unduly through no fault of their own.
Region VI has been fortunate in being close enough to Vancouver to make available
the many community resources in that large urban area. In the region itself there were
boarding homes with a bed capacity of 157 and six private hospitals with a bed capacity
of 140. Two of these priyate hospitals—the Cottage Private Hospital at Abbotsford
and the Simpson Rest Home and Private Hospital at Fort Langley—were opened during
the year. Plans were well under way for the completion of a Mennonite boarding hoi
at Clearbrook, and the Old-age Pensioners' Association at Mission was active in regard
to the development of a boarding home for the aged in that area.
The School for Handicapped Children at Sardis has proved a resource to the Chilliwack area for their mentally handicapped children, and the community should be highly
commended for its effort in establishing this school.
The three Community Chests at Chilliwack, Langley, and Cloverdale have proved
most valuable resources, as have many of the service organizations throughout the region
The work with the 10,389 cases carried during the year has been shared and facilitated
by these organizations, as well as by the thirteen Municipal Councils with whom the wort
was carried on in partnership. i§ |§
While there are these good resources within the region, the need continues for
a treatment centre for children who respond to foster-home care. There is also a need
for some form of institutional care for teen-age children "for whom foster homes cannot
be found, and whose needs do not seem to be met by this type of care in any case.
The work of the Social Welfare Branch was interpreted to many community groups
during the year through the showing of the film "A Friend at the Door " and by talis
given by social workers.
Four social workers completed the Civil Defence Welfare Course given in Victoria
and Vancouver, and an interest and activity was maintained throughout the region in*
local Civil Defence organizations.
Plans are under way to present annual reports, of the work which has been done
in their areas, to several of the larger municipalities for whom the region is working *
a per capita basis.
«mJ"* aT^ regi?al Staff meeting was hel<* on February 16th, 17th, and 18th. *
led bv M^ Mr11" ^J m an imtitute on " Casew°rk in the Giving of Assist*
led by Mrs. McCrae, of the University of British Columbia School of Social Work
with related papers prepared and presented by staff members. The Director of Welfare,
the Psychiatric Supervisor, and the Medical Social Work Consultant presented material
and led discussions on the following days, when staff again contributed papers which they
had prepared. Discussion centred around the use of community resources, the problem
of the unemployed employable, psychiatric services, rehabilitation, Provincial-Municipal
relationships and the use of supervision. It was felt that this meeting was of great value,
not only in regard to professional development and skill, but also in furthering the
co-ordination among field, divisions, and general administration.
Too much cannot be said in regard to the loyalty and industry of all staff engaged in
the work of the Social Welfare Branch throughout the region. The amount of work to
be done is always beyond the reach of staff, both clerical and social work, yet a maximum
effort is made by Provincial and municipal offices to serve well all those who come to them
for assistance. The service it was possible to give could not have been accomplished
without this maximum effort, and without the help of community organizations, and
particularly of the municipal officials who worked with the Provincial office so under-
standingly and co-operatively.
Respectfully submitted.
(Miss) Mary K. King,
Regional Administrator and Field Consultant.
-JBfc- §  #  ■      FAMILY DIVISION J, .   .
I wish to present the report of the Family Division, which is concerned with the
services to families and individuals rendered by the Social Welfare Branch within the
provisions of the § Social Assistance Act," the " Mothers' Allowances Act," and the
Family Service programme, for the fiscal year April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954.
The significant factor in the past fiscal year has been the sharp increase in the number
of persons receiving assistance in the last four months of the year. After a minor increase
in April and May, 1953, the numbers decreased steadily until October, 1953. Thereafter
the number of recipients had increased by March, 1954, to the highest total since March,
1950, when the case load rose to 17,775. While Social Allowance is, by policy, granted
to assist unemployable persons, there are always those persons in receipt of Social Allowance whose unemployability is marginal and dependent on the labour demand. Consequently, any improvement or decline in the employment situation is always reflected
in the Social Allowance case load. The economic and employment situation in various
parts of the Province has variously been reported as good to static to poor over the months
from December, 1953, to March, 1954. This, coupled with the usual seasonal shut-downs
with coincidental slackening of business activity, has no doubt been a major cause in the
rapid increase in the case load in the last four months of the fiscal year to the March,
1954, total. Coupled with any temporary or seasonal causes is doubtless the constant
factor that the population of the Province is increasing, which results in a proportionate
increase in the number of persons who require or will require assistance. In addition,
there is always the increasing awareness and knowledge of the welfare services of the
Province and the nature of financial assistance which we are able to grant for temporary
or longer periods of time.   #
From the comparative figures given below, it will be seen that the March, 1954,
case load represented an increase of over 14 per cent as compared with the March, 1953,
case load.   Whether or not this is a seasonal rise is not clear at this time.
The comparative statement of the case load for the month of March in the past three
years is as follows:—
Table I.—Case Load
March, 1952
March, 1953
March, 1954
Heads of families  P „. ...  ■- ._..__.... _._  _,      _._...__  _   .__       	
Dependents   .	
Single recipients.         	
Table II.—Case Load on a Monthly Basis
Heads of
April, 1953	
May, 1953	
June, 1953	
July, 1953	
August, 1953 ~&	
September, 1953—	
October, 1953	
November, 1953	
December, 1953 \	
January, 1954	
February, 1954	
March, 1954  	
 J 36
Of the case load of 17,487 as at March 31st, 1954, the regional totals areas
Table III. Regional Totals of Individuals in Receipt of Assistance
as at March 31st, 1954
Unorganized Territory (District)
Region I—
Alberni  J'
Courtenay  r*|
Duncan   P
Nanaimo   302
Victoria ~~  194
Region II—
New Westminster  33
Vancouver  f  186
Westview   50
Region III—
Kamloops   385
Kelowna   318
Penticton   169
Salmon Arm  92
Vernon   322
Region IV—
Cranbrook   241
Creston  jg^
Fernie  , §  g^
Grand Forks , -L-LZL ~ 99
Nelson \  51fi
New Denver [ 11 __  ~ 198
Trail l~::~; i03
Organized Territory (Municipal)
Alberni City   47
Campbell River  39
Courtenay  22
Central Saanich   \\
Cumberland   15
Duncan   27
Esquimau   56
Ladysmith   17
Lake Cowichan   10
Nanaimo   191
North Cowicjian   74
Oak Bay   17
Port Alberni   94
Qualicum Beach   8
Saanich   167
Victoria   685
Burnaby  . 611
Coquitlam   281
Delta   109
New Westminster   581
North Vancouver City  175
North Vancouver District  122
Port Coquitlam   61
Port Moody  33
Richmond   263
Vancouver  4,129
West Vancouver  - 60
Westview Village  10
Armstrong  .  17
Coldstream   12
Enderby   26
Glenmore   5
Kamloops   158
Kelowna   129
Merritt   37
North Kamloops   51
Oliver   21
Peachland   6
Penticton   144
Princeton   26
Revelstoke   18
Salmon Arm City  23
Salmon Arm District   63
Spallumcheen   37
Summerland   45
Vernon    90
Cranbrook    58
Creston Village  j  30
Fernie    51
Grand Forks  27
Greenwood  *"
Kaslo   5
Kimberley   40
Nelson   96
Rossland   ^2
Trail   55
Warfield    18
J 37
Table HI.—Regional Totals of Individuals in Receipt of Assistance
as at March 31st, 1954—Continued
Unorganized Territory (District)
Region V—
Pouce Coupe —
Prince George 	
Prince Rupert	
Williams Lake	
Organized Territory (Municipal)
Dawson Creek Village  58
Prince George  178
Prince Rupert  148
Quesnel  7
Smithers  60
Region VI—
Chilliwack City  86
Chilliwhack Township  280
Hope   50
Kent   5
Langley   207
Maple Ridge  167
Matsqui  234
Mission District  140
Mission Village  33
Pitt Meadows j  17
Sumas   60
Surrey  _  1,049
Totals .  5,457
12,030 17,487
By region the total case load is divided as follows: Approximately 14 per cent of the
recipients reside in Region I, 38 per cent in Region II, 13 per cent in Region III, 11 per
cent in Region IV, 10 per cent in Region V, and 14 per cent in Region VI.
The distribution of case load living in organized and unorganized territory shows no
variation from last fiscal year. Approximately 31 per cent live in unorganized territory
and 69 per cent in organized territory.
When legal residence as determined by the | Residence and Responsibility Act" is
taken into account, the distribution is as follows:—
Table IV.—Legal Residence of Social Allowance Recipients, March, 1952-54
March, 1952
March, 1953
March, 1954
Municipal responsibilities            . —      	
Provincial responsibilities 	
Table V.-
—Comparative Table on Percen
itage Basis
March, 1952
March, 1953
March, 1954
Municipal responsibilities     .       .
Provincial responsibilities  	
Per Cent
|         Per Cent
Per Cent
1     ■
The percentage distribution based on legal residence of recipients has again shown
an increase in Provincial responsibilities and a corresponding decrease in municipal
responsibilities. if :m
The following table outlines the expenditures made by the Social Welfare Branch
during the fiscal year for Social Allowances, medical services, and other charges:—
 J 38
Table VI.—Expenditures by the Province for Social Allowances,
Medical Services, etc., 1953-54
Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year
1. Cases who are the responsibility of a municipality (80 and 50
per cent paid by the Province)1.	
2. Cases who are the sole responsibility of the Province (100 per
cent paid by the Province)—        m-	
3. Repatriation, 'transportation within 'the Province, nursing- and
boarding-home care (other than TIL), special allowances and
4. Emergency payments, such as where a family may lose its home
by fire or similar' circumstances
Municipal and Provincial cases—
(a) Tuberculosis, boarding-, nursing-,, and private-home cases.
(b) Transportation of tuberculosis cases.
(c) Comforts allowances for tuberculosis cases.
Net Social Allowances	
Administration and operation of sanatorium, project, and pavilion for Japanese at New Denver2	
7. Hospitalization of social assistance cases3	
8. Medical services and drugs	
Total cost of Social Allowance to the Province, 1953-54	
Fiscal Yea-
$8,316,758.51 $9,872,673.81       $5,660,706.67
1 Effective April 1st, 1953, basis of sharing Social Allowance reverted to 80-20 per cent for maximum allowance in
effect as at April 1st, 1952.
2 1951-52 figure covers administration, hospitalization, Social Allowances re Japanese indigents.  Effective 1952-53,
Social Allowances, etc., for Japanese paid out of Social Allowance vote.
a 1951-52 figure covers hospital insurance premiums (including co-insurance).    Figures for 1952-53 and 1953-54
represent hospitalization payments on an actual cost basis rather than on a premium basis.
Some of the significant developments in the Social Allowance programme for the
past year have been as follows:— J| \ |
(1) Effective April 1st, 1953, for a trial period of one year a reciprocal agreement was established with the Province of Saskatchewan whereby each
Province would accept financial responsibility for the costs of Social
Allowance granted to persons in need living in that Province but who
have residence in the other Province, without requesting reimbursement,
and repatriation to be considered only in extraordinary circumstances.
(2) As in past years, a Christmas bonus was granted to recipients of Social
Allowance and Mothers' Allowance in the amount of $5 to heads of
families and $2 to single recipients. |
(3) Clarification of the policy regarding use of housekeeper services was
achieved to include border-line income families as well as families already
in receipt of social assistance. The basis of eligibility in border-line cases
to be determined on four major factors— (1) need for service, (2) advisability of preservation of family unit, (3) financial resources within the
family, and (4) their ability to contribute to the cost of housekeeping
, service, having regard to the Social Allowance scale. The Province is
wilMng to share in such costs with municipalities on the 80-20-per-cent
basis and bears 100 per cent of the cost for Provincial cases.
A very important step in welfare services was achieved in September,
1953 with the introduction of a comprehensive dental-care programme
for children under 9 years of age who are dependents of persons in receipt
of social assistance, and residing in areas where there is no prevent
(school) dental services or a community dental clinic. This had W»
much-needed service, and the new programme was a welcome one. 1 j
costs of this service (except transportation) are borne by the Provm*
Government at the present time, with no contributions required from the
ij; municipalities.   In the future it is hoped that it will be possible to extend
this service by at least one further yearly age-group.
(5) It was also announced that, effective April 1st, 1954, Social Allowances
rjjr. , and Mothers' Allowances would be increased by $5 per month for single
individuals, $7 per month for two persons, and $2 per month for each
additional dependent.
By special agreement the Province has agreed to share for municipal responsibilities
and assume in full for Provincial responsibilities the costs of physical rehabilitation of
twelve in-patients at any one time in the Western Rehabilitation Centre. In addition,
the same provision covers an unspecified number of out-patients.
As at April 1st, 1953, there were nine in-patients, and during the fiscal year thirty-
seven additional in-patients were approved and admitted. Of this number, twenty-six
were Canadian Arthritis and Rheumatism Society trainees and the balance of twenty were
Western Society trainees. Of the total of forty-six, nine were also out-patients either
before or after their admission to the centre as in-patients. In addition, eleven other
out-patients were treated, several of whom had been in-patients in previous years.
During the fiscal year under review, three village municipalities, because of increases
in their current annual tax revenue, and one district municipality (newly incorporated)
were added to the list of those already participating in the administration of Social Allowances under the provisions of the " Social Assistance Act" and regulations. The participating municipalities now number eighty—thirty-five cities, twenty-nine districts, and
sixteen village municipalities. The number having their own social welfare departments
remains the same (seventeen), and the remaining sixty-three purchase the service from
the Province. There are, in addition, thirty-three village municipalities whose current
annual tax revenue is less than $12,500 who are not required to be responsible for social
welfare costs and are regarded as Provincial territory for social assistance purposes.
There have been seven Boards of Review established in accordance with section 13
of the regulations to the I Social Assistance Act," whereby an applicant for or recipient
of Social Allowance may apply for a review of any decision which he considers affects
him adversely to the Director of Welfare, who then establishes a Board of Review to heap:
the appeal. An eighth Board of Review was established but was not required to hear the
appeal as the applicant's case was settled satisfactorily otherwise.
There has been one amendment to the regulations to the " Social Assistance Act"
during the year under review. This amendment empowers the Director of Welfare to
authorize assistance if the exigencies of the situation in respect to any person or persons
so warrant, even though they have not established eligibility by residing in the Province
for at least twelve months continuously self-supporting or without having received public
assistance. H
As stated above, there is always a group of those in receipt of assistance whose
employability because of some physical or mental handicap is at the best only marginal.
There are others whose unemployability arises from the fact that their condition no longer
permits them to be employed at the work in which they are trained or experienced. With
the prospect of an expanded rehabilitation programme in conjunction with the proposed
disability allowances, it is hoped that many persons now receiving Social Allowance
(or incapacitated husbands in Mothers' Allowance families) may be physically and voca-
tionally rehabilitated to the end that they and their families may become economic*
independent. For those whose disability or handicap does not permit such a plan th
granting of disability allowances when such become effective should also have a const
erable effect on the Social Allowance case load.        '       f
Meanwhile the services of the Branch have to a large extent had as their focus the
rehabilitation of the individual in so far as is possible with the ultimate hope of economic
There are numerous instances of success, and the following has been chosen as
an example:—
Mr. Y. with his wife and family had been in receipt of public assistance for four
years because of a chronic bone condition of the leg which prevented him from following
his usual work as a tractor operator. At the time that consideration was being given to
vocational retraining he was 44 years of age. After vocational testing and counselling it
was recommended that Mr. Y. would be a suitable trainee in book-keeping and stenography. The family lived in a small rural community where such vocational training was
not available.
The plan evolved, therefore, that the wife and family would remain at home with
assistance paid to them, and that Mr. Y. would be brought to a larger centre where
training was available and receive assistance there while he took the course. Other
assistance to him was in the form of tuition and other fees, transportation, and later
clothing as required for employment. Additional assistance was granted to the family in
the form of much-needed dental care for the children, and assistance with repairs to the
home from a private community resource to supplement other income from the sale of
eggs and vegetables. While Mr. Y. was slow in learning, he was conscientious and reliable
and ultimately achieved competence and qualifications in his new training which also
included first aid. There had been some set-backs due to illness and family concerns, but
everyone was impressed with Mr. Y's sincere efforts in his rehabilitation. He made every
effort to find employment for himself, with the result that within a year of the beginning
of the rehabilitation plan he had found suitable employment as a timekeeper in a centre
near to his home, and the family no longer needed public assistance.
While such a plan could not have been accomplished without the helpful cooperation of municipal welfare departments and community agencies such as counselling
service, vocational training centre, employment service, and first-aid training, there was
in Mr. Y. himself the desire for economic independence, and he himself co-operated
whole-heartedly in the plan made for him. We are sure he and his family will be a mud
happier group in their new-found independence. I|||p
This is erne example which might be repeated numerous times, with variations, from
among those persons who come to us for financial help. It is an example, too, of the
additional service given and use of community resources, in recognition of the fact that
the granting of financial aid alone is not the final solution to an individual or family
problem. Given incentive and encouragement and the means to achieve a goal, many
families and individuals can proceed through self-help to independence and a secure and
satisfying life.
The case load for the year under review has continued to decrease, but the rate of
decrease appeal to have levelled off, being 7 per cent of the March, 1953, figure and
comparable to the percentage decrease in case load for the previous year.
Table I.—Comparative Statement of Case Load j
As at March, 1952  503
As at March, 1953 l 470
As at March, 1954 [ 426
J 41
On a monthly basis the c^se-load figures for this fiscal year are as follows:—
Table II.—Monthly Case Load, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Number of
in Pay
Number of Persons
April, 1953	
May, 1953	
June, 1953	
July, 1953	
August, 1953--
September, 1953
October, 1953	
November, 1953
December, 1953.
January, 1954-	
February, 1954-
March, 1954	
The volume of applications has shown a marked decrease in this past fiscal year,
totalling 114, as against the total of 163 for the previous year. This may in part be due
to the fact that effective April 1st, 1953, the basis of sharing the total Social Allowance
grants with municipalities reverted to 80--20 per cent instead of the previous method of
sharing increases on a 50-50-per-cent basis only. The number of grants declined to
79 and the number of cancellations to 123. f§
The following tables show a further breakdown concerning applications, grants,
refusals, and cancellations:—
Table III.—Statement of Applications Considered and Decisions Made
Applications pending as at April 1st, 1953  16
New applications received during year  92
Reapplications received during year  22
Total   130
Grants  79
Refusals   29
Withdrawn   3
Applications pending as at March 31st, 1954  19
Total   130
Reasons for refusals—
Mother's earnings in excess  1
Unearned income in excess  2
Husband not totally disabled one year  3
Husband not in Penitentiary  2
Disability of husband did not arise in British Columbia  1
Mother cannot establish legal marriage  1
Desertion eligibility requirements not met  2
Carried forward   12
Table III.—Statement of Applications Considered and Decisions Made—Continued
Brought forward-  12
Reasons for refusals—Continued
Assets in excess  7
Property in excess —  6
Income and earnings of children in excess  i
Mother not a British subject (also assets in excess)  l
Free board and lodging  1
Not in Province continuously for three years prior to date
If of application  1
Total  -  29
Reasons for applications pending—
Documents and medical report required  6
Awaiting information re assets  6
Awaiting information re other income  1
Decision pending |  2
First investigation report not received  3
Awaiting further information  1
Total   19
Table IV.—Reasons for Cancellation of the Allowances 1
Mother deceased  1
Mother remarried  10
Left British Columbia  2
Whereabouts unknown  ! 2
Mother earning in excess  30
Mother ineligible under section 7 of the 1 Mothers' Allowances
Act"  6
Husband not totally disabled  12
Only child in hospital indefinitely  1
Children no longer in mother's care  1
Only child removed  1
Only child 18 year of age ZZ ZZ  10
Only child under 16 left school . |  2
Only child under 18 left school ZZZZZZZZZ  17
Older children maintaining    7
Assets in excess  " 1 8
Unearned income in excess  10
Withdrawn  3
Total  123
Of the cancelled cases, the length of time each family had been in receipt of Mothers
Allowance is as follows:—
Years _   1     2    3    4   5  6  7    8   9   10   11   12   13   14   15   16  17 18
Cases - 19   20   12   13   8   5   6   10  5    7     1     3     4     2     1     4 2   1
Total cases, 123.  Average length of time on allowance, 5.79 years.
J 43
The average length of time on allowance has remained for the second year below the
six-year mark. It is noted that 58.5 per cent of the cancelled allowances had been in
effect less than six years, and that the most frequent reason for cancellation was because
of the mother's earnings. From these two factors it might be inferred that mothers in
receipt of Mothers' Allowance no longer regard it as a pension, but rather in the true
sense of a temporary measure until such time as they can make independent economic
plans for themselves and their families when the children no longer require their close
and undivided personal care.
In the following table the status of the mother refers to the various definitions of
eligibility in the Act under which a mother may qualify for the Mothers' Allowance.
Table V.—Status and Number of Mothers and Dependents in Receipt of Allowance
as at March, 1954
Status of Mother in Accordance with Eligibility
Number of Children
Qualifications Set by the Act
Widows ®s= -,_    .... .. ffii
Husband in mental hospital           ..
Incapacitated husbands home __     	
Incapacitated husbands away (hospital or institution, etc.) j \     n ^         .^
Incapacitated husbands O.A.S., O.A.A., and B.P.
Judicial separation    _ 	
Deserted  ,.  	
Elder sister  	
From this table the following totals are derived:—
Table VI.—Number of Individuals for Whom Allowance Granted
Mothers      426
Husbands         53I
Children       953
Total  1,432
1 This figure applies to those incapacitated husbands residing in the home and who are included in the Mothers'
Allowance grant. In addition, there are 17 husbands in hospital or institution or cared for elsewhere and 21 husbands who are in receipt of Old Age Security, Old-age Assistance, or Blind Pension (total, 38) who are not included in
the Mothers' Allowance.
The percentage of one-child cases has decreased this year to 33 per cent of the case
load, and two-child cases have increased slightly to 34 per cent. Together they represent
67 per cent of the case load.
Costs of Mothers' Allowances
With the decrease in the case load the expenditures have also shown a decrease
during this fiscal year.
As has been explained in previous Reports, the increases in the maximum allowance
which have been granted since 1948 are paid from Social Allowance funds, and, there-
tore, two statements are required to indicate the total costs.
Table VII.—Mothers' Allowance Financial Statement for the Fiscal Year
April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954 Jf
Amount of allowances paid as follows:—
Month Amount of Allowance
April, 1953  $21,618.89
May, 1953      21,690.44
June, 1953     21,560.29
July, 1953 _    21,057.24
August, 1953      20,852.79
September, 1953      20,515.53
October, 1953 . 19,773.37
November, 1953     20,023.83
December, 1953     20,052.07
January, 1954     20,029.97
February, 1954     19,917.42
|t    March, 1954     19,953.97 *
'     .' Jj| ;   $247,045.81
Wr Reconciliation with Ledger Account in Controlling and -m
Audit Branch: Amount advanced by Minister of
'    ||      Finance  - - -  $247,045.81
The books and records of the Director of Welfare respecting Mothers' Allowances, for the fiscal year ended March
31st, 1954, have been examined under my direction.
Table VIII.—Financial Statement of Supplementary Social Allowances Paid to Recipients
of Mothers' Allowances (Vote 172) for the Fiscal Year April 1st, 1953, to Mad
31st, 1954. j|
Amount of allowances paid as follows:—
Month Amount of Allowance
April, 1953  $12,239.40
May, 1953  12,225.10
June, 1953  12,140.40
July, 1953  11,888.70
August, 1953  11,755.90
September, 1953  11,477.55
October, 1953  11* 107/71'..
November, 1953  11220 55
December, 1953 ZZ ll'^^O
Christmas bonus  2 155 00
January, 1954 ZZ ZI 1 l^S^O
S T^K54     11,088.40
March, 1954     ll^OS 4
'ft.   $140,873.36
Reconciliation with Ledger Account in Controlling and ~=
Audit Branch: Amount advanced by Minister of
finance   $140,873.36
The books and records of the Director r»f \x/Ai«» "        . 8
Mothers' Allowance, for the fiscal yw^d ^^i1?1^^^^1^6^^ Social Allowances paid to recipient
mcircn .51st, 1954, have been examined under my direction.
J 45
Table IX.—Statement Showing per Capita Cost to the Province
Fiscal Year
at June of
Bach Year
Per Capita
Cost to the
General Comments
No amendments were made in the "Mothers' Allowances Act" or regulations
during the year under review.
Once again the comment should be made regarding the practicability of categorical
assistance in the form of Mothers' Allowances, or the necessity for continuing such special
legislative provision. Because of the provisions of the Act, which do not permit of broad
interpretation or application, it becomes increasingly difficult to administer. The process
of making application is a complicated one as compared with an application for Social
Allowance, so that except where residence and responsibility is a factor in the cost to
municipalities of the alternative form of assistance—namely, Social Allowance—this particular provision is seldom used.
As in previous years, Mothers' Allowances are a resource used almost entirely by
municipal areas.   The following table will illustrate this statement.
Table X.—Proportion of Applications and Grants in Organized Territory
jjj Total applications and reapplications received  114
Applicants residing in organized territory  109
Applicants having legal residence in organized terri- |p
tory  105
Total grants made during year     79
Recipients residing in organized territory     76
Recipients having legal residence in organized territory      73
Allowances in pay as at March 31st, 1954  426
Recipients having legal residence in unorganized ter-
tory     47
Recipients having legal residence in organized terri-
f     tory  379
The percentage of the case load living in or having residence in organized territory
shows little variation from the previous year. The above figures indicate that 95.6 per
cent of applicants for Mothers' Allowance lived in organized territory and 92.1 per cent
had legal residence in organized territory. Of the grants made, the percentages were
comparable—96.1 per cent resided in organized territory and 92.4 per cent had legal
residence in organized territory. Of the total active case load as at March 31st, 1954,
88.9 per cent had residence in organized territory. iy|;   W
The Family Division continues to receive reports of the difficulties some mothers
are experiencing in budgeting on the allowance, especially when there is no other income
or no prospect of other income, because the mother's or her children's age or health
preclude her working even part time, and where there are no earning children living at
home. t$ m
With regard to earning children living in the home, there are difficulties encountered
in reconciling the principle and philosophy of family responsibility and support with the
and lad
J 46
tendency toward the opinion that the young person starting out in life and workshop
not be hampered by family responsibilities. On the one hand the earning son or da*
ter should not be expected to assume financial responsibility beyond their capacity, bVt
on the other if they are excused from all responsibility, they have no example of fami'
sharing for the time when they establish homes and families of their own. Somewher
between the two extremes is an ideal or an equitable lme, but because of the variables^
human motivation and behaviour, it is sometimes difficult to find that equitable line,
These remarks would apply also in the administration of Social Allowance where
factors of family dependence and independence, acceptance of responsibility, and
of acceptance would apply in equal measure.
Family Service is a term which has categorical significance from the point of view
of the Branch statistics, but it is also a descriptive term for the process of helping families
and individuals with their problems of relationship, of behaviour and personality, which
are emotional in nature rather than economic, and do not always arise from financial
need. It is not something which is given or withheld, but should be inherent at all times
in the service which a welfare agency gives.
Statistically speaking, however, the Family Service case load, with minor variations
during the year, has reached, as at March, 1954, the highest total yet reported. It is
interesting to note that since April 1st, 1949, this case load has, with some fluctuation,
risen from 1,119 to 1,545, a percentage increase of 38 per cent in five years.
There is no practical basis for evaluating this service, as human values cannot truly
be measured in numerical terms, but within that case load families have been strengthened and individuals encouraged to achieve the greatest happiness and satisfaction from
fife of which they are capable. I
The following example has been chosen to illustrate the help which can be given
to an individual within a family setting. Although financial asistance was in pay, it was
the secondary problem, while the primary one was that of emotional adjustment, and it
was this problem on which the social worker concentrated.
Yvonne was a girl in her early twenties who first became known to the agency when
she found it necessary to apply for financial assistance. Because of an illness which
would require lengthy convalescence, she was unable to work, and although she lived
with her parents, they were unable to maintain her. f
In the social worker's first contacts with Yvonne it became apparent that she was
a retiring diffident girl who had experienced difficulty in finding employment although
she had office training and had, because of her shyness, grown up without the normal
social contacts of a young girl and woman. There were evidences of stresses in the family
home because of the father's inconsiderate attitude to his family, which had made the
mother over-protective of the children.   § |
During a period of many months while Yvonne convalesced and received assistance,
the social worker visited her regularly, encouraged her to speak about herself and her
ultimate plans for seeking employment, without any pressure or urging to do so inn*
diately as she was not well enough to look for work. However, in this way Yvonne5
real desire to be independent was kept alive and supported. She was encouraged*
other ways by complimenting her about a previous job she had had and the favourable
pipression she had made. Along with this, Yvonne was encouraged to think about social
groups she might join when her health permitted and after she had found work,
keenin™ T^^I™d °f her c<*valescence, Yvonne was able to find some bo*
iSi^l?1Ch ?' C°Uld d° at home' This encouraged and pleased her and
family very much, as it was a first positive step for her in seeking re-employment. &
first definite effort to apply for a position the social worker accompanied her because
Yvonne had in the past always shown some hesitation in applying for a job by herself. There was a possible position available for her, but it would necessitate her living
away from home. Yvonne interviewed the prospective employer by herself and obtained
the position. While she had also been willing to seek her own living arrangements, at
a private boarding home known to the worker, it was learned that Yvonne continued to
live at home and commute. J|
As commuting was expensive and living also, Yvonne was still considering the
possibility of moving into a girls' residence nearer her work.
Later, on her own decision, she decided to go to the boarding-place, where, although
she had first wanted a single room, she had agreed to share a room with another girl.
Among her fellow boarders she had also found a girl companion with whom she could
walk to work.    She joined in the group at meal-times and was planning to join a club.
Although there was some possibility that the job she had might terminate, Yvonne
was able to face the possibility of looking for other work without undue concern, and
agreed that she no longer needed the help of the social worker or the agency in her
planning, although she was aware that a social worker was always prepared to help her
if she requested it.
By understanding and encouragement to make plans for herself, without undue
pressure and at her own pace Yvonne had progressed from a retiring self-effacing anxious
young woman to one who could face the future with some confidence and self-assurance.
In all of this the social worker had accepted a passive role, drawing Yvonne out in conversation, listening when she was ready to talk, planning with her when she was ready to
make plans, but leaving with Yvonne at all times the realization that the decisions were
hers to make.
Table I.—Total of Family Service Cases from April 1st, 1953,
ff to March 31st, 1954
April, 1953 -. 1,450
May, 1953 2 1,420
June, 1953 i  1,434
July, 1953   1,450
August, 1953 -  1,473
September, 1953 _ | -  1,522
October, 1953  1,517
November, 1953  1,542
December, 1953 | j  1,524
January, 1954  1,513
^ February, 1954  1,533
March, 1954 .  1,545
Family Allowances
The volume of requests channelled through the Division showed a marked decrease
during the past fiscal year. These are requests for reports on family situations where the
use of or eligibility for Family Allowances or the proper payee is in question.
J 48
Table IL Requests Received from Family Allowances Division,
1 April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Pending as at April 1st, 1953    38
Received during fiscal year April 1st, 1953, to March 31st,
1954, by months—
April   17
May   30
June   14
July  12
August     7
September    6
October   18
November   24
December  16
January  14
February     5
March   12
— 175
Total requests received  213
Requests completed within fiscal year  208
Requests pending as at April 1st, 1954      5
These requests for reports were directed as follows:—
Table III.—Referrals to District Offices and Other Agencies
Reports pending as at April 1st, 1953    50
Requests forwarded during fiscal year April 1st, 1953, to March
31st, 1954, by regions—
Region I1  37
Region II1  68
Region III  26
Region IV  11
Region V  20
Region VI    _       _         24
JP                                                                    — 186
Total number of requests referred  236:
« *?cludes referrals to Private agencies in Victoria and Vancouver,
♦h   r?    •? d^frence fr this total as compared with requests received is accounted for by the fact that one request from
tne Family Allowances Division may require two or more separate reports from different offices or agencies.
Table IV.—Referrals Completed within Fiscal Year, by Regions
Region I  37
Region II  79
Region III  31
Region IV        ~ |                     14
Region V  "                    19
Region VI  28
Total  I        208
Total number of requests referred ZZZZZZZ.ZZZ  236
Referrals pending as at April 1st, 1954    28
Third-party Administration of Family Allowances
During the past year there has only been one case of third-party administration,
and this was cancelled when the child concerned was taken into care. As at the end of
the year, in no case was administration in effect.
Old Age Security
The Family Division also acts as the channel for referral of requests for assistance
to applicants for Old Age Security. The assistance is usually in the nature of helping
with correspondence, securing documents, and occasionally financial assistance pending
granting of the Old Age Security.
During the past fiscal year the volume of requests has decreased to a considerable
extent, as shown in the following tables.
Table V.—Requests Received from Old Age Security Division
* 3 from April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Pending as at April 1st, 1953     9
Received during fiscal year April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954,
Ik by months— H
-h April      1
June      2
July     2
August      2
September     1
October     4
l§    November 	
j|    December      5
# January      2
February      1 m
March      3 m
— 23
Total case load I  32
Cases completed within fiscal year  29
Cases pending as at April 1st, 1954     3
Table VI.—Requests to District Offices
Pending as at April 1st, 1953     9
Requests forwarded during fiscal year April 1st, 1953, to March
31st, 1954, by regions—
Region I  4
Region II  4
Region III  3
Region IV  5
Region V  5
fji   Region VI  2
— 23
Total number of requests  32
Table VII.—Reports Completed by Regions
Region I  3
Region II 1  5
Region III  5
Region IV  4
Region V  8
Region VI  4
Total-- 29
Total number of requests 32
Requests pending as at April1st, 1954    3
For a ten-month period in the previous fiscal year the volume of requests for tribunals averaged between eleven and twelve per month. For the fiscal year under review
the monthly average number of requests has been between eight and nine, to a total oi
103 for the full year.
While tribunals in connection with patients in Provincial institutions are arranged
by the institutional authorities, a member of the Social Welfare Branch staff acts as k
designated member for the Regional Director of Old Age Security, as defined in tie
regulations to the | Old Age Security Act." There have been none of this type duri
the year under review.
Table VIII.—Requests Received from Old Age Security Division for Tribunals
from April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954, by Months
April   3
May  4
June   14
July  20
August   10
September  11
October  10
November  9
December  14
January  4
February  2
March ZZZZ WKm  2
Total requests  103
Table IX.—Tribunals Completed by Regions
Region I  10
Region II ZZZ1 ZII1   56
Region III  |                                  2
Region IV _ ~ ~    || §   \ %
Region V  2
Region VI ~~~ j   \q
Tribunals completed 98
Tribunals pending as at April 1st, 1954?  103^98=5.
As always, the Family Division wishes to express its appreciation and thanks to the
social workers, district supervisors, regional administrators, and field consultants, for
without their help and efforts the programme of the Branch would be unfulfilled. The
Division also wishes to express appreciation to the municipal welfare departments, other
governmental departments, and the private agencies for their advice and co-operation
during the year.
(Miss) Marie Riddell,
Provincial Supervisor, Family Division.
At the beginning of the fiscal year the Superintendent of Child Welfare had in care
1 385 children, and during the past twelve months this number has increased to 2,186.
Of the 801 new admissions, some had been removed from neglectful home situations-
a larger number than usual were orphans because of death of parents by accident oi
violence; a few older boys and girls were committed to the care of the Superintendent
of Child Welfare under the | Juvenile Delinquents Act." One hundred and fifteen of
the 801 admissions were Doukhobor children admitted at the request of the police after
many of their parents, members of the radical Sons of Freedom sect, had been arrested
following mass nudist demonstrations or following prosecution of the parents under!
" Public Schools Act." The majority of new admissions, however, were children coming
into care at parental request, who remained for only a short period of time during some
family crisis or until adoption placement plans could be completed.
Five hundred and twenty-two children were discharged from care during the twelve
months, the majority to return to their own homes, and as at March 31st, 1954,1$
continued in care.   The legal status of these children is as follows:—
Children in Care
Status at Mar. 31,1954
Wards of the S.C.W. (P.C.A.) |  897
Wards of the S.C.W. (J.D.A.)  53
Children before Court (P.C.A.)  96
Non-wards of the S.C.W  335
Wards of a C.A.S. (P.C.A.)   143
Wards of another Province  33
Non-wards of a C.A.S,  5
Doukhobor children of the Sons of Freedom sect—
Wards of S.C.W. (P.C.A.)      4
Before Court  98
8    1 —    102
Total  1,664
A great deal has been accomplished for individual children this year through increase
in placement resources. A special group-living arrangement was established at Neff
Denver for Doukhobor children, and as at March 31st, 1954, 26 of the original Hi
remain in these quarters. One thousand two hundred and ninety-four of the total 1,W
children in the care of the Superintendent of Child Welfare are in foster homes throughout
the six Social Welfare Branch regions, 26 in Provincial Government institutions, 48 wit
foster-parents outside the Province, and only 194 children, the lowest number in*
Division's history, are being cared for on the Superintendent's behalf by a Children's*
Perhaps more than any one other single accomplishment, the fact that the Sod
Welfare Branch was able to plan for aU but a small number of the children taken J
care throughout the Province shows the growth and development of the public <J*
welfare services in British Columbia during the past few years. There has not W
a decline in the services of voluntary child welfare agencies, but they have been freed
plan better for children needing care within their own jurisdiction and to develop J
and needed resources for children generally, whether in or out of their home. J
voluntary agency has had opportunity to examine its function in relation to the rf
emerging public service and to question many traditional areas of responsibly
services and the financing of these.   At present the Provincial Government pays Cbil^
J 53
Aid Societies total per capita for any child being cared for by a Children's Aid Society
at the Superintendent's request, for all children of unmarried mothers who become wards
of a Children's Aid Society, and for wards of a society who have Provincial residence.
The Government also reimburses 80 per cent of per capita to municipalities for maintenance of wards with municipal residence, and these various sums of money constitute the
major portion of Children's Aid Societies' budgets. There are still large areas of work
carried by the societies, however, as the amelioration of neglect, which, though statutory
in nature, are financed by Community Chest funds, and which are provided elsewhere
throughout the Province at Government cost. Having to budget preventive services out
of voluntary subscriptions leaves a Children's Aid Society with only one alternative—that
of curtailment of programme—should Community Chest fail to meet its objective. The
unusually satisfactory public and private co-relation of child welfare services which exists
in British Columbia is worthy of a more clearly defined financial base, and it is sincerely
hoped that this can be realized within the not too distant future.
As required under the "Protection of Children Act," the following is a statement
of the number and status of children cared for by the three Children's Aid Societies during
the year:—
Number and Status of Children Cared for by Children's Aid Societies
during Fiscal Year
Before Court
Vancouver Children's Aid Society-
Catholic Children's Aid Society	
Victoria Children's Aid Society	
Number and Status of Children Cared for by Children's Aid Societies
as at March 31st, 1954
Vancouver Children's Aid Society
Catholic Children's Aid Society	
Victoria Children's Aid Society	
The cost of maintaining children in the care of a Children's Aid Society (excluding
those maintained by Community Chest funds) and of maintaining the children in the care
of the Superintendent of Child Welfare during the year, and the distribution of these costs
as between Provincial and municipal governments, is shown in the following financial
statement:— 4
Gross cost of maintenance to Provincial Government of children in Child Welfare Division
foster homes   (including physically handicapped children)   $472,270.21
Cost of maintenance of children in care of Chilli! dren's Aid Societies chargeable to Provincial
Government      404,330.93
Payments to municipalities—Provincial Govern-
ijf      ment 80-per-cent share of municipal cases in
care of Children's Aid Societies     411,457.30
Gross transportation of children         5,342.21
Gross cost of hospitalization of infants       19,084.00
Grants to sundry homes         1,300.00 %
g    mi \%    ■  . ;#  $1,313,784.65
Brought forward. $1,313,784.65
Received from municipalities  (20-per-cent
share for their children in care of the
Child Welfare Division)     $50,225.24
Parents' contributions       14,776.84
Received from other Provinces       11,483.29
Received from Children's Aid Societies for
their children in care of the Child Wel-
fare Division       13,415.44
Received from Fairbridge Farm School and
^Federal Government       67,859.84
Miscellaneous refunds         1,204.95
Transportation of children  618.96
Net cost to Provincial Government $1,154,200.09
Wk: In any group of children who for various reasons must be reared away from
own home, some will be deeply disturbed and get into serious difficulties or incuramei
breakdown. There will be some, too, whose mental retardation makes living in ordinary
community life both difficult and hazardous. The numbers of such children in
Welfare Division's total population is reassuringly low. As of April 1st, 1954, ei^
are in an Industrial School, seven in Oakalla, one in Crease Clinic, and 10 in ft
Woodlands School for the mentally handicapped child. For this last, too easily forgotten
group of children, the Branch has established a comforts allowance, out of which is
supplied the little extras essential to all children at the School. The major responsibility
as guardian of these wards, however, must, in the main, be discharged on behalf of tk
Superintendent of Child Welfare by the hospital staff, and she is deeply grateful to
for their patience, kindness, and skills.
Not all boys and girls who find their way to an Industrial School or Oakalla
be helped to a more satisfactory way of life, but by working closely with the institute
and probation staffs, sometimes the hoped-for change takes place. Two wards
had been committed to both institutions write from points in Eastern Canada
they are enjoying army life, and from their gradually advancing rank their dutfe 8
bring performed to the satisfaction of senior officers. Another boy with a similar history
completed a radio technician's course with first-class standing, is employed by a hf
industrial corporation, and, out of a salary which would be substantial for many^
older than he, has repaid the money the Division was able to advance him for ti*j
fees. His remark to the worker tells rather vividly what the past few years have m
to him; % I'm on my way. Hope the next boy you give the loan to gets as much out
of it as I did"
Three years ago, at considerable expense, the Department authorized
in the Ryther Child Care Centre, Seattle, Wash., of one of our wards. This boy *
been removed from a tragically unhappy mother and father and was presenting ^
behaviour problems.   This year on Mother's Day, one year after his discharge from*
Zf u wEd tW°, &"** While on annual kave in the Royal Canadian Air JJ
drove back to spend the day with staff and children at Ryther    Talking with Miss W
hffTt™a w thC ?ntie' Chuck said he stiU * caujht himself worrying &**
SouitZ ! m°ther and father>" but " he kept working at it," and he "*J*
thought he was going to make it." Miss Johnson thinks he will, too, and t* {
Superintendent there was little resemblance \^^^^^t^A T* f
visited her this May and the unhappy child in flight the Superintendent had asked her
to try to help three years ago. The investment in this boy, in terms of rehabilitation,
has been returned tenfold. |il|
The reason for taking any child into agency care must be to enhance his opportunities for a sound and wholesome upbringing. For most infants needing permanent
homes, there is no lack of placement resources to achieve this goal because applications
to adopt babies continue to increase. If an infant is to be released by his parents for
adoption, it is no longer necessary for him to spend time in a temporary foster home,
and in many instances he may be taken directly from the hospital by his adoptive parents.
There is an increasing number of applicants for children from 1 to 6 years of age
also, and there have been arranged more placements this year than ever before for
children in this age-group. Some children still wait over-long for parents who will
want them for their own, however, and these small boys and girls continue to be a cause
of deep concern. Some are not readily planned for because of physical defects which
may require a long and trying series of operations and hospitalization, and it is easy
to understand why prospective adopting parents hesitate to assume such responsibility.
Disappointing and infinitely more harmful are the rejections some children suffer through
racial prejudice. One such child, of Anglo-Chinese parentage, a ward of the Superintendent of Child Welfare for eleven years, who never achieved adoption placement, is
to-day a promising boy of whom any parent could be proud. He ranks high in his
school class, is a leader in community groups, and is to have the signal honour of representing his church club at its international conference in London, England, this summer.
If this boy were an infant to-day, after much searching, the staff might find adopting
parents who would love and accept him as their son, but Canada, like most other
countries, has still a long way to go before the word " child " in " child welfare " comes
truly to mean children, regardless of race, colour, or creed.
As a means of meeting the urgent need for parents of children of mixed racial
origin, British Columbia has been negotiating with other Provinces and the Canadian
Welfare Council, and a well-stated plan of procedure for interprovincial placement of
children has resulted. In the past year three wards of part-Japanese parentage have
been placed with parents of similar backgrounds in another Province, and a child of
an Eastern Canadian city whose parents were negro is now happily settled with his
adopting parents in British Columbia. ^"
'■£. Although great satisfaction accrues to the agency and worker, achieving such placements is time-consuming and demands unusual skill and sensitivity. Before the right
home is found, whether in or outside the Province, the child is usually no longer an infant
and is well aware of what is happening to him. He and his prospective parents must
be given ample time to become acquainted, and throughout the entire period of planning
both must be left free to reject or accept each other if their being together is not right
and happy for them in every respect.
Because of the efforts made to find adoption homes for children with special needs,
the 256 placements made by the Division this year is lower by 14 than the number in
the preceding twelve months, f Over and above the 256, however, there were 15 wards
of the Superintendent of Child Welfare, placed originally on a foster-home basis, who
altered their status during the year to adoption placement with the same family, bringing
the actual number of placements achieved within the fiscal year to 271.
The following table of adoption placements made by the Division throughout the
six regions shows the trend toward earlier placement of infants and the emphasis which
has been placed on the finding of parents for the older, more difficult-to-place child:—
 J 56
Ages of Children Placed for Adoption throughout the Social Welfare
Branch Regions during the Fiscal Year
Under 1
1 to 2
3 to 5
6 to 11
3 to 4
Region I	
Region II	
Region III	
Region IV	
Region V	
Region VI	
Totals .
In addition to the 271 children placed in adoption homes by Child Welfare Division,
240 were placed by the Vancouver Children's Aid Society, 48 by the Children's Aid
Society of the Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver, and 62 by the Victoria Family and
Children's Service. The total of 621 children placed through recognized child welfare
agencies in British Columbia in the past twelve months is one of the highest agency
placement ratios throughout Canada. The problem of private placement of children in
British Columbia would seem to be successfully resolving itself through the standard of
service being offered the public by Children's Aid Societies and the Provincial Social
Welfare Branch. In the 1,063 adoptions completed by Court order this year, 61.1 per
cent of the children had been placed by a child welfare agency, 24.6 per cent were
related to the adopting parents, and only 14.3 per cent had been placed with their
adopting parents by private arrangement. J| j| -M
It becomes increasingly apparent in the number of adoptions completed by Court
order each year that adoption, a process as old as civilization, has taken on new meaning
which in time must have an important effect, both legally and socially, upon society.
The legally adopted child of an unmarried mother has ceased to be "films nullius"
(belonging to no one). Under section 10 (1) of the British Columbia "Adoption Act,"
amended March, 1953, he is now bestowed the same status toward his adopting parents,
as well as their kin, as if he had been born in the family. Cmldren of widely different
cultural and racial backgrounds are provided opportunities for physical, emotional, and
spiritual growth, by adopting parents, far beyond what would ordinarily have been
available to them through their parents by birth or through the medium of agency-paid
foster-home placements. As adults, they will take their places in many walks of life and
be as mature and able as others. Their satisfactory development will alter many beliefs
about the inheritability of social behaviour and illness which have for too long stood
in the way of children in placement. In due course, through successful adoption placement, the child needing parents will be seen more and more as an individual personality,
wholly worthy in his own right of the good things of life.
The following review of adoptions completed in British Columbia during the past
eight years graphically underlines the impact the process of adoption has had, and will
continue to have, on the over-all population of this Province:	
Adoptions Completed
by Court Order
1946-47 _
1947_48 _
1948-49 ..
1949-50 2
1950-51 _
1951-52 ..
1952-53 ..
1953-54 _
The same or an even higher rate of increase is likely to be maintained during the
next eight years and will result in there being, among the child and young adult population in British Columbia alone, a body in the neighbourhood of 20,000 with the status
of adopted child. This cannot but have an incalculable effect upon the stability of child
and family life, and in the course of time must be reflected favourably in every facet of
community and national endeavour.
One of the very gratifying achievements in adoptions to be noted this year was the
marked increase in the number of Roman Catholic children placed. Publicity about the
shortage of foster and adoption homes released by the Children's Aid Society of the
Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver to the various parishes throughout the Province
proved generally effective. In the main, however, the success was due to the constant
awareness of the needs of children which has been maintained between Field and
Division staffs. Frequently the resources of six regions will be explored before the right
home for a particular child is found. Forty-four placements of Roman Catholic children
were made by the Division this year, which is six more than ever before.
The health of the children in care was good, although there are three deaths to be
reported this year. One, a 15-year-old boy, had suffered from a long and recognized
terminal illness for which all possible medical aid was obtained. The other two were
infants. One of these died as a direct result of parental neglect shortly after coming into
care. The other baby, considered healthy at birth, died suddenly as a result of an obscure
congenital defect.
Two wards attending the School for the Deaf and the Blind Children are benefiting
considerably from hearing aids supplied by the Division. The five seriously physically
handicapped children, who are being cared for in specially subsidized foster homes, are
in touch with retraining centres, and are participating in the various programmes to the
extent their handicaps permit.
The I Protection of Children Act," erroneously thought of at times as designed for
the sole purpose of removing children from their parents, is, in fact, a piece of legislation
requiring in its administration an unshakeable belief in the inviolability of family life.
With this at the core of protection work, no child will be removed until every effort has
been made to keep him in his own home. Jf Most children committed under the Act remain
wards of the Superintendent of Child Welfare until they reach the age of 21 years or are
legally adopted, but each year a few are returned to their parents' care. Sometimes the
circumstance which resulted in the child's removal, as the mental illness of an only
parent, is remedied, and a home can again be established. Parents who have been
neglectful may change and once more be able to provide adequately for their children.
In the orders rescinded this year, involving nineteen children, there were some such
situations in which guardianship had proved helpful to the children and their parents.
Some of the nineteen children, however, had been handicapped in placement either
because the needed resource was not to be found or the distances involved and heavy
pressures of other responsibilities had made it impossible for workers to give them the
sustained help needed. To return these children to their homes was not a wholly satisfactory plan, but under the circumstance seemed to hold less risk for them than did a
continuation of foster-home placement. 'M
In the number of requests for service being received from allied professions and
agencies, it is evident that protection work with families is being recognized increasingly
as an important preventive measure. During the year seventy-seven reports of family
situations were completed for the use of the Supreme Court in cpstody-of-children applications. The Canadian Immigration Department asked us to assess the suitability of
plans being made by relatives wanting to bring children into Canada. Seventy-eight such
applications were evaluated for that Department. The Division of Vital Statistics was
supplied twenty-two recommendations in connection with complicated applications for
the legitimation of children, and sixty-four transient children were planned for through
repatriation in co-operation with other Provincial or International child welfare agencies.,
Each of these services to other organizations or governmental departments is a |
contribution to the well-being and protection of children and their families, and in no
small way adds to the general public's knowledge and understandmg of the over-all
services of the Branch.
One thousand five hundred and eighty-five births of children born out of wedlock
were registered during the year. This increase of seventy-seven over last year is reassuringly low in relation to the over-all gain in population throughout the Province. The
majority of these unmarried mothers received help in planning for themselves and child
from a social agency.
During the year the Canadian Welfare Council's National Committee on Services
to Unmarried Mothers, on which the Superintendent served, completed its study and
released a comprehensive statement of services which should be available in each
Province, regardless of the residence of the unmarried mother. These services in the
main have been in existence in British Columbia for some time, and the Branch is now
in process of implementing an arrangement for complete medical and hospital coverage,
the one essential service contained in the Canadian Welfare Council's statement not as
yet fully effective in this Province. |
In the administration of the j Children of Unmarried Parents Act," $52,085.85, an
increase of $1,486.64 over last year, was paid to the Superintendent of Child Welfare by
fathers of children born out of wedlock and disbursed on their behalf. Thirty-seven new
agreements, twenty-four Court orders, and fifteen settlements were obtained under the
Act. I
The number of Fairbridge Farm School children in care was reduced by four discharges to fifty-seven during the year. Two became of age and are self-supporting and
independent. One returned to England at his own insistence in an attempt to find the
family he has never ceased to miss. The mother of the fourth boy realized a dream of
many years when she came out to Canada and established a home for her son. The tie
between these two boys and their parents, which remained unbroken through some ten
years, despite separation and distances, underlines the necessity of having sound family
welfare services in conjunction with any child-placement plan. If emigration of the
child to another country is involved, because of the serious elements of finality inherent
in any such scheme, the need for these services becomes doubly important.
The progress of the Jewish overseas children continues to be satisfactory, and as
of March 31st, 1954, seven continue in care.
Working with children, their families, foster families, or adoptive parents has many
satisfactions and is never without challenge, but when the needed resource to help is
not available, there are frustrations. Region V, the northern part of the Province, with
its vast, not easily accessible geographic areas and fast-growing population, perhaps finds
this to be true more often than any other region. In addition to the problems to be
expected in a rapidly developing country, Region V has a large Indian population which,
for some time to come, will be facing the many difficulties of assimilation and emancipation. The Department of Indian Affairs has welcomed Branch services when emergency
child welfare situations arise. Eventually it is hoped the Department of Indian Affairs
will participate more actively in the planning for Indian children by helping to develop
placement resources throughout the registered Indian groups of the Province. Region
V's difficulties and their untiring efforts to help Indian children have served to focus the
problem and arouse interest in it in many quarters. Good placement plans for a number
of children of Indian and part-Indian origin have resulted, and a few homes on Indian
reservations have been referred by some Indian Agents. Until an adequate number of
good standard placement resources are opened, however, less than satisfactory planning
will continue for the Indian and part-Indian child.
During the year a number of developments have occurred which will have a marked
bearing on future planning. The Government decided on taking direct action to enforce
school attendance in the Doukhobor Sons of Freedom communities. As a result, a
large number of children were apprehended by the police in September, 1953, and the
Social Welfare Branch was faced with the responsibility of their care. This made extraordinarily heavy demands upon Field and Division staffs. The children were accommodated in the New Denver Sanatorium, and a modified curriculum and general programme were successfully instituted in co-operation with the Department of Education.
The Division was fortunate in assembling an unusually capable staff which, it is hoped,
$rill make possible the handling of any future crisis in the sect with a minimum of disruption to ordinary Branch responsibilities.
The additional social worker who will be assigned to the staff of the Adoption
Placement Section of the Division (Vancouver) on April 1st, 1954, will;,enable the
Division to plan better and earlier for children needing adopting parents. This, however,
will result in an increased number of adoptions to be completed, and a review of the
total staff requirements of the Division must be made again before the end of the next
fiscal year.
The inadequacy of foster-home rates continues to present a serious problem, and,
in many instances, is dangerously limiting the administration's helpfulness to children.
This is particulary so with regard to the older child whose placement is complicated when
he becomes aware that his foster-parents, because of current food costs, cannot maintain
him out of the money being paid to them by the Department. If guardianship under the
" Protection of Children Act" is to mean anything to children and foster-parents, both
must be certain that the Government provides at least basic needs. Foster-home rates
which are not presently sufficient for all age-groups must be increased next year if the
Branch is to retain the community confidence it now enjoys and fulfil the responsibilities
of guardianship in the true sense.
The Superintendent is looking forward to an improvement in the financial arrangements with Children's Aid Societies next year. With this accomplished, a more clearly
defined and better understood line of responsibility between the societies and the Government will result. Further decentralization of Child Welfare Division administration to
the field may not be indicated within the next twelve months,; but the interim period is
being used to advantage by Field and Division to assess both needs and resources.
Fuller participation in the Branch's revised staff-development programme and in regional
staff meetings has been invaluable to Divisional staff and, it is believed, has strengthened
immeasurably the all-important relationship between them and the field.!
In general, 1953-54 has been a year of accomplishment for the Division, and it
looks forward to the new fiscal year with confidence. None of the activities reported
can be termed Divisional business alone. All must be considered as joint undertaking
of Division and Field or Division and Children's Aid Societies. The progress made in
this merging of interest and responsibilities is readily discernible and has resulted in a
new and unprecedented solidarity of purpose which must inevitably achieve improved
services for children.
To all who have helped toward this goal, in the Branch, other departments of
Government, and other agencies, the Superintendent offers sincere thanks.
(Miss) Ruby McKay,
Superintendent of Child Welfare.
Like the previous year, 1953-54 was relatively quiet. There were no changes in
legislation or regulations. The Federal-Provincial Advisory Board met in Ottawa in
January and a number of worth-while changes in the regulations were recommended, but
these are not yet in effect as the necessary formal amendments have not yet been made,
Doubtless they will be made shortly, however. f
During the first nine months of the year the trend was slightly downward in the rate
of receipt of new applications, but there was a slight upward turn in the last three months,
This upward turn was probably due to increased interest resulting from announcement
made by the Provincial Government that the cost-of-living bonus was to be increased in
April. The total number of applications received for Old-age Assistance was only 2,858
this year, compared with 3,644 last year, and the number of applications for Blind
Persons' Allowances was only 48, compared with 77 last year. There were 2,793
applications for Old-age Assistance, and 53 applications for Blind Persons' Allowances
granted. These numbers compare with 5,427 and 97 respectively for last year. (The
number of grants in each instance includes grants of some applications held over from the
previous year.) |There were 8,144 recipients of Old-age Assistance and 488 recipients
of Blind Persons' Allowances on the payroll at the end of this year, compared with 7,685
and 485 respectively last year. These include transfers from other Provinces.
It is interesting to note that the expenditure on cost-of-living bonuses for persons
of 70 years of age and over in receipt of pensions under the Old Age Security Act shows
a decrease of $27,450 this year. The expenditure last year was $2,985,735.42, while
this year it was $2,958,285.43. This decrease is small, but it assumes more significance
when it is realized that the population over 70 years of age in the Province is increasing
both relatively and absolutely. It is apparent that the percentage of persons in this age-
group applying for the bonus is smaller than the percentage who would have applied for
a pension under the former " Old Age Pensions Act." § f
Housing for older people is, of course, only one phase of the over-all housing
problem, but it is a very important one. It may be said that shelter in an adequate
environment is the key to the comfort, convenience, and general happiness of the elderly.
The circle graphs will help to picture the prospective need of provision for suitable
living accommodation for people in the 65-69-year-old group in this Province. It will
be noted that 61 per cent of those on assistance do not own any real property whatever.
To make matters worse, as indicated elsewhere in this Report, 51 per cent also have no
personal property assets whatever, either, and 34.6 per cent of them live alone. Since it
is seen that 60 per cent of them are unmarried, widows, widowers, separated, or divorced,
the emphasis will have to be on accommodation for single individuals instead of married
A great deal is being written and said about the problems of the aged in these times.
The subject is so vast that it would not be appropriate to attempt to outline it in any
adequate way here. It would seem wise, however, to have not only a National but a
Provincial over-all long-term plan for developing the desired services for the aged, and
it would be of great advantage to have some one person in the Social Welfare Branch
whose sole duty it would be to head up the work in connection with the aged. There is
great need for some such person to give leadership in working out policies and initiating
long-term plans.
| JANUARY 1st, 1952, TO MARCH 31st, 1954 f
Following will be found a graphic presentation of the various aspects of Old-age
Assistance since the coming into force of the " Old-age Assistance Act" in January, 1952.
The broken dotted line shows the cost of Old-age Assistance in units of 50,000 per
square. This line shows a rapid rise in the first few months and a more gradual one in
the following months. This is due to the initial large number of applications granted at
the beginning of the year 1952, when the Act first came into force. The monthly increase
in cost is smaller than it would be otherwise because of the fact that recipients are
transferred to Old Age Security as soon as they become 70 years of age.
The line graph showing the number of applications received by January 1st, 1952,
is extended beyond the upper limits of the graph. The arrow at the end of the line graph
indicates that it should be extended to 7,032.
It will be seen that during the first few months' operation of the Act, there was an
initial high peak in the number of applications received and granted, which was, of course,
to be expected.
The line graph showing the number of applications granted and that showing the
number of Old-age Assistance cases transferred to Old Age Security are gradually drawing
closer together. This indicates that there are approximately as many Old-age Assistance
cases taken off the total case load each month as are being added by new grants. If this
trend continues, the number of Old-age Assistance recipients on the payroll will be more
or less constant.
62                                                       BRITISH COLUMBIA
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Old-age Assistance
Table I.—Disposition of Applications
Number of new applications received 2,858
Number of applications granted  2,793 x
Number of applications not granted (refused, withdrawn, etc.)     480
1 Includes some left over from previous year.
Table II.—Miscellaneous
(a) British Columbia—
Number of recipients returned to British Columbia  42
Number of B.C. reinstatements granted  85
Number of B.C. recipients who have died  294
Number of B.C. recipients suspended  294
Number of B.C. recipients transferred to other Provinces 84
Number of B.C. recipients transferred to Old Age Security 1,823
Total number of B.C. recipients on payroll at end of fiscal
year  7,811
(b) Other Province—       u     r W"'
Number of " other Province" recipients transferred to
British Columbia  120
Number of " other Province " recipients reinstated  28
Number of 1 other Province " recipients suspended  9
Number of 1 other Province " recipients who have died__ 4
Number of "other Province" recipients transferred out
of British Columbia. j  73
Number of "other Province" recipients transferred to
J§        Old Age Security  28
(c) Total number of recipients (B.C. and "other Province") on
payroll at end of fiscal year.  8,144
Table III.—Reasons Why Applications Not Granted
Number Per Cent
Not of age  104 21.67
Unable to prove age  40 8.33
Not sufficient residence  4 .83
Income in excess 1  156 32.50
Unable to prove residence  3 .62
Transfer of property  1 .22
Receiving War Veterans' Allowance  5 1.04
Information refused  17 3.54
Applications withdrawn  80 16.66
Applicants died before grant  13 2.71
Whereabouts unknown  17 3.54
Eligible for Old Age Security  33 6.88
Miscellaneous   7 1.46
Total     480 100.00
 J 64
if        }     Table IV.—Sex of New Recipients
Male   J '351
Female  1 >442
fl<     Total  2>793
TaWe V.—Marital Status of New Recipients
Married  U 40
Single  394
Widows  633
Widowers  202
Separated   385
Divorced   39
Total  2,793
Table VI.—Birthplace of New Recipients
British Columbia  130
Other parts of Canada  630
British Isles  853
Other parts of British Empire | 26
United States of America  265
Other foreign countries  889
Total  2,793
Table VII.—Ages at Granting of Assistance
Age 65 __-   1,377
Age 66  419
Age 67  365
Age 68  374
Age 69  258
Total^  2,793
Table VIII.—Ages of Recipients at Death
Age 65  26
Age 66  43
Age 67  ----- ^
Age 68 j  65
Age 69  93
Total     294
Per Cent
Per Cent
Per Cent
. .93
Per Cent
Per Cent
Table IX.—With Whom New Recipients Live
Number Per Cent
Living alone       969 34.69
Living with spouse       887 31.76
Living with spouse and children      228 8.16
Living with children      411 14.72
Living with other relatives        91 3.26
Living with others      132 4.72
Living in public institutions        48. 1.72
Living in private institutions        27 .97
Total   2,793 100.00
Table X.—Where New Recipients Are Living
Number Per Cent
In own house   1,102 39.45
In rented house      376 13.46
In children's home       411 14.72
In home of other relatives        68 r. 2.43
Boarding        91 3.26
In boarding home        14 .50
In housekeeping room       397 14.21
In single room (eating out)       109 3.90
In rented suite       150 5.38
In institutions         75 2.69
Total   2,793 100.00
Table XI.—Economic Status of New Recipients
(a) Holding real property of value—
Number Per Cent
$0   1,704 61.00
$1 to $250   44 1.58
$251 to $500   151 5.41
$501 to $750    200 7.17
$751 to $1,000   193 6.91
$1,001 to $1,500   264 9.45
■    $1,501 to $2,000   102 3.65
$2,001 and up   135 4.83
Total   2,793 100-00
(b) Holding personal property of value—
$0   1,450 51.92
$1 to $250   787
$251 to $500  233
$501 to $750   1°4
$751 to $1,000  74
$1,001 to $1,500   85
$1,501 to $2,000   38
$2,001 and up   m  _
Total  Ji^E
Table XXII. Number of Recipients Living in Other Provinces
Whose Assistance Is Paid by British Columbia
Granted by Granted bv
British Columbia    Other Provinces
Alberta   —| 19 13
Saskatchewan    19 20
Manitoba       ° 5
Ontario   1" IS
Quebec     1 3
New Brunswick     2
Nova Scotia      2 2
Prince Edward Island —
Newfoundland — —
Northwest Territories	
Yukon Territory 	
Total 69 58
Table XIII.—Distribution of B.C. Recipients According to the
Amount of Assistance Received (Basic Assistance, $40)
Amount of Assistance Per Cent
$40   83.75
$35 to $39.99  3.90
$20 to $24.99 I  1.81
$25 to $29.99  2.82
$20 to $24.99  1.81
Less than $19.99  4.03
Total    100.00
Bund Persons' Allowances
Table I.—Disposition of Applications
Number of new applications received  48
Number of applications granted 531
 Number of applications not granted (refused, withdrawn, etc)-- 11
1 Includes some left over from previous year.
Table II.—Miscellaneous
Number of B.C. recipients suspended     12
Number of B.C. recipients reinstated       6
Number of B.C. recipients transferred to other Provinces       7
Number of B.C. recipients returned to British Columbia ifc  1
Number of B.C. recipients transferred to Old Age Security 29
Number of deaths of B.C. recipients |     15
Number of deaths of | other Province § recipients	
Number of " other Province " recipients transferred to British
Columbia ,     13
Number of | other Province " recipients transferred out of
British Columbia or suspended       7
Number of 1 other Province " recipients reinstated       3
Total on payroll at end of fiscal year—
1 British Columbia   470
§ Other Province      18
Table III.—Reasons Why Applications Not Granted
Number Per Cent
Not blind within the meaning of the Act     8 72.73
Income in excess     2 18.18
Applications withdrawn  	
Eligible for Old Age Security r_„ * 	
Died before grant   m 	
Receiving War Veterans' Allowance  	
Information refused •___T_    1 9.09
Total   11 100.00
Table IV.—Sex of New Recipients
Number Per Cent
Male   31 l|     58.50
Female  !  22 41.50
Total . @fc§S_--  53 100.00
sjMSlI        Table V.—Marital Status of New Recipients .*?."•
Number fgjl Per Cent
Married - .- 18 33.96
Single  |  10 18.86
Widows     7       ,-iBv   13.21
Widowers  \     5 to 9.44
Separated -  12 22.64
Divorced  . _-    1 1.89
Total  ,  53 100.00
 J 68
Table VI.—Birthplace of New Recipients
Number Per Cent
British Columbia   2* 39-62
Other parts of Canada     9 16.98
British Isles     8 15-09
Other parts of British Empire  	
United States of America     4 7.53
Other foreign countries   H 20.78
Total   53 100.00
Table VII.—Ages at Granting of Allowance
Number Per Cent
Age 21   	
Ages 22 to 30     2 3.77
Ages 31 to 40    9 16.98
Ages 41 to 50     3 5.67
Ages 51 to 60  18 33.96
Ages 61 to 69  21 39.62
Total  53 100.00
Table VIII.—Ages of Recipients at Death
Number Per Cent
Age 21  	
Ages 22 to 30  	
Ages 31 to 40     1 6.67
Ages 41 to 50     1 6.67
Ages 51 to 60     2 13.33
Ages 61 to 69  11 73.33
Total   15 100.00
Table IX.—With Whom New Recipients Live
Number Per Cent
Living with parents     3 5.67
Living alone  12 22.65
Living with spouse  15 28.31
Living with spouse and children     4 7.53
Living with children     7 13.21
Living with other relatives     4 7.53
Living with others     7 13.21
Living in public institutions  	
Living in private institutions     1 1.89
Total  53 100.00
Table X.—Where New Recipients Are Living
Number Per Cent
In own house 1  23 43.40
In rented house  10 18.86
In rented suite     2 3.77
In children's home     5 9.44
Boarding      4 7.53
With member of family     5 9.44
In housekeeping room     3 5.67
In boarding home    	
In institutions     1 1.89
In single room (eating out)    	
Total   53 100.00
Table XL—Economic Status of New Recipients
(a) Holding real property of value—                       Number Percent
$0   37 69.80
$1 to $250     1 1.89
$251 to $500     2 3.77
$501 to $750  	
$751 to $1,000     3 5.67
$1,001 to $1,500     3 5.67
$1,501 to $2,000     4 7.53
$2,001 and up     3 5.67
Total   53 100.00
(b) Holding personal property of value—
$0   35 66.04
$1 to $250     8 15.09
$251 to $500     6 11.33
$501 to $750     2 3.77
$751 to $1,000  	
$1,001 to $1,500  	
$1,501 to $2,000  	
$2,001 and up     2 3.77
Total   53 100.00
 Table XIII.—Distribution of B.C. Recipients According to the Amount
of Allowance Received (Basic Allowance, $40)
Allowance Per Cent
$40  93.62
$35 to $39.99  0.85
$30 to $34.99  1.06
$25 to $29.99  1.70
$20 to $24.99  1.49
$19.99 and less jjj  1.28
•    Total .__  100.00
New Applications
Number received  1,534
Number granted bonus and health services  781
Number granted bonus only  57
Number granted health services only  115
Number who died before application was granted  32
Number of applications withdrawn  53
Number of applicants ineligible  266
Number of applications pending.  230
Total  1,534
General Information
Former old-age pensioners still receiving cost-of-living bonus
on March 31st, 1954  20,263
Old-age Assistance recipients transferred to Old Age Security
receiving cost-of-living bonus on March 31st, 1954    2,684
New Old Age Security pensioners receiving cost-of-living
bonus on March 31st, 1954  __ 2,967
Blind persons in receipt of Old Age Bm^^^^^^0
of-livmg bonus on March 31st, 1954___ 230
Table XII.—Number of Recipients Living in Other Provinces Whose Allowances
Are Paid by This Province \
Granted by Granted by
British Columbia   Other Provinces
Alberta     1 3
Saskatchewan  1
Manitoba     1 —
Ontario   — 2
New Brunswick	
Nova Scotia     1
Prince Edward Island  —
Northwest Territories  —
Yukon Territory  —
Total     3 6
The Old-age Assistance Act," Year Ended March 31st, 1954
Total  amount paid  recipients  in  British Assistance Bonus Total
Columbia   $3,732,083.66     $702,736.54 $4,434,820.20
Less amount of refunds from recipients—
Overpayments refunded  $5,970.88 $1,632.08 $7,602.96
Miscellaneous refunds  40.00 10.00 50.00
Totals  $6,010.88 $1,642.08 $7,652.96
Net amount paid to recipients in British
Columbia   $3,726,072.78     $701,094.46 $4,427,167.24
Add amount paid other Provinces on account of recipients for whom British
Columbia is responsible  26,676.28 2,102.07 28,778.35
Less amount received by British Columbia on account of recipients for whom
other Provinces are responsible  62,498.50 5,199.04 67,697.54
Less amount refunded by the Federal
Government      1,863,051.68        1,863,051.68
Total amount paid by British
Columbia   $1,827,198.88     $697,997.49 $2,525,196.37
The Blind Persons Act," Year Ended March 3 1st, 1954
Allowances Bonus Total
Total amount paid recipients in British Columbia $234,667.40    $53,865.00 $288,532.40
Less amount of refunds from recipients— JL
Estates of pensioners       $1,180.94        $1,180.94
Overpayments refunded  275.75 $5.00 280.75
Totals       $1,456.69   S- $5.00 f $1,461.69
Net amount paid to recipients in British Co- ?
lumbia  $233,210.71    $53,860.00 $287,070.71
Add amount paid other Provinces on account
of recipients for whom British Columbia is
responsible   590.00 220.00 810.00
Less amount received by British Columbia on
account of recipients for whom other Provinces are responsible         2,590.16        1,620.00        4,210.16
Less amount refunded by the Federal Government     174,964.30      174,964.30
Total amount paid by British Co- §
lumbia     $56,246.25    $52,460.00 $108,706.25
 J 72
Old Age Security Pensioners—Cost-of-living Bonus,
Year Ended March 31st, 1954
Total amount paid recipients in British Columbia™. $3,075,440.48
Less amount of refunds from recipients—
Overpayments refunded  $9,642.13
Miscellaneous refunds  127.70
Total  $9,769.83
Net amount paid to recipients in British Columbia  $3,065,670.65
Add amount paid other Provinces on account of recipients for whom British Columbia is responsible.- 28,933.57
Less amount received by British Columbia on account
of recipients for whom  other Provinces  are
responsible        136,318.79
Total amount paid by British Columbia  $2,958,285.43
The Old Age Pensions Act," Year Ended March 31st, 1954
Pensions Bonus Total
$406.97 $100.93 $507.90
Total amount paid pensioners in British Columbia 	
Less amount of refunds from pensioners and
From Estates 1  $36,651.96
Overpayments refunded       1,694.17
Miscellaneous refunds  5.96
Net balance of pensions in British Columbia— $37,945.121
Less amount paid other Provinces on account
of pensioners for whom British Columbia is
responsible   763.32
Add amount received from other Provinces on
account of pensioners for whom they were
responsible   9.50
Less amount refunded to the Federal Government      28,454.55
$1,110.00     $37,761.96
9.68 1,703.85
10.00 15.96
Totals  $38,352.09      $1,129.68     $39,481.77
$1,028.75!    $38,973.87!
Total balance for pensions in British - 0
Columbia     $8,736,751    $1,028.75!     $9,765.^
1 Credit.
Administration Expense
Salaries and special services  $145,243.55
Office expense  45,665.66
Travelling expense  419.17
Incidentals and contingencies  268.24
Equipment and furniture  170.26
Rentals |  4,539.41
Total  $196,306.29
Cost-of-living Bonus
I Old-age Pension Act" (Credit) $1,028.75
f Old-age Assistance Act"  697,997.49
| Blind Persons' Allowances Act"  52,460.00
Universal Old Age Security  2,958,285.43  |
As per Public Accounts  $3,707,714.17
Administration and Assistance
Administration  $196,306.29
"Old-age Pension Act" (Credit) 8,736.75
" Old-age Assistance Act"  1,827,198.88
I Blind Persons' Allowances Act"_  56,246.25
As per Public Accounts  $2,071,014.67
In concluding this report the Board wishes to express its sincere appreciation for the
loyal and efficient work of the staff during the year and for assistance generously extended
by other departments of the Government and numerous outside agencies.
Respectfully submitted.
J. H. Creighton,
I The important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle.   The essential thin
is not to have conquered but to have fought well."—de Coubertin.
This in essence, bespeaks of the Division's efforts durmg the past year. In the field
of people's welfare one can never hope to sit back and feel satisfied that all problems have
been solved. They are as numerous and as variable as the number of individuals them-
selves. One must face the struggle and fight well, always keeping before him the principle
that prevention is better than cure, and solutions must be in the interest of the majority,
With this preamble we respectfully present a brief account of the Division's activities
during 1953-54. I
Medical Services Division has been instrumental in distributing a large sum of
money, over $2,000,000, which, it is believed, has been well spent. (For a detailed
composite picture, please see table at end of report.) |
The largest item has been $1,217,431.12, which was paid for complete medical
attention. It was found advisable that the per capita payment to the Canadian Medical
Association (British Columbia Division) should be increased from $18.50 to $20, effective April 1st, 1954. t The sum spent might appear large, but it netted the profession only
about 54 per cent of their assessed medical bills for services rendered. The Social Welfare
Branch is therefore not only indebted to the profession for their contribution to the needs
of its clients in a financial way, but also to their co-operative attitude to the Division,
They continue to exhibit a sincere understanding of the problem and are most liberal in
their offers to help.
The second largest call on the budget has been for drugs and medicines. Here
$658,599.63 was spent. This sum appears large and disproportionate. It is large but
not disproportionate. One must keep in mind that medicines to-day are more specific
and expensive than in the past. They are more expensive but far more scientific and
efficacious. A goodly proportion of the money spent was for pain relief, sleep producers,
and tonics. In the light of the age-group served, this is not out of line. One is reminded
of Tennyson's "In Memoriam":— 1§|§
Be near me when my light is low,
When the blood creeps, and the nerves prick
And tingle; and the heart is sick,
And all the wheels of Being slow.
Be near me when the sensuous frame
Is rack'd with pangs that conquer trust;
And Time, a maniac scattering dust,
And Life, a Fury slinging flame.
However, the Division will continue to experiment in ways and means of supplying
the needs as economically as possible. To this end the Canadian Medical Association
(British Columbia Division) has appointed a special committee of medical men to consult
and advise Medical Services Division of the Branch. This committee has been most
helpful, and for this the Director thanks them.
For several reasons, a number beyond its control, the Division has been somewhat
slow in making payments to the druggists of their accounts throughout the Province.
This unfortunate situation has caused the Division a great deal of unpleasantness and,
no doubt, hardship to the druggists. The Division is, however, on the verge of rectifying
this. The Director wishes to express his thanks and appreciation to the pharmacists
throughout the Province for their consideration and tolerance, and offer them the
assurance that he will not be satisfied until he solves this problem.
One is pleased to report that in the past year the Branch has stepped into the broad
field of preventive dentistry for children. For years their need has been felt, and on
September 15th, 1953, a scheme was introduced through the Provincial Health Branch
J 75
with the co-operation of the dentists in the Province to provide prophylactic dental care
to all dependents of social-assistance recipients of less than 9 years of age for whom
existing coverage through school dental services does not exist. This scheme is being
carefully watched by the Division with the hope that it may be able to expand the service
to include children of all ages. This naturally will depend upon (a) number of dentists
in practice in the Province and (b) availability of money to meet the cost. At present
the scarcity of dentists is a real factor and handicap, but now that the Branch has embarked on this venture, it is hoped that time will assist in its objective. The Division
wishes to thank the Provincial Health Branch and the British Columbia Dental Association for their assistance.
To facilitate the functioning of the Division, the Director is studying the administrative set-up with a view to stream-lining and decentralizing, keeping before him four
factors: (1) Calls upon the governments, (2) demands on the time of the social worker
and the number of social workers available in the field, (3) the rising number on the
assisted rolls, and (4) the amount of money available for Branch services. The Division
is quite certain that with the continued exhibition of good feeling and faith existing
between the municipalities and the Provincial Government responsible for the welfare
of those assisted people, a good deal can be accomplished in this direction, and the
Division hopes to introduce changes which should prove beneficial to all concerned.
The Director takes pleasure in informing you that the relationship between the
Division and the various organizations, too numerous to mention, continues to be one
of mutual advantage.   To all that have assisted, he extends his sincere thanks.
Comparative Breakdown of Expenditures for Fiscal Years 1952—53 and 1953-54
Municipalities and
Municipalities and
Optometric examinations
Crease Clinic	
I- 124,528.38
f 632,297.94
\      8,797.23
[    35,533.27
\ 106,873.72
Respectfully submitted.
J. C. Moscovich, M.D.,
The annual report of the Provincial Industrial School for Boys, covering the fiscal
year ended March 31st, 1954, is herewith submitted.
Total admissions of boys to this School dropped from 141 in 1952-53 to 122 in
this year, 1953-54. However, as will be seen in the ten-year tabulation appearing
below, the average length of stay, the average daily population, and the total number of
inmate days were higher than in the previous year. Admissions by age distribution were
as follows: One boy was 9 years of age, one aged 11, eight aged 12, fifteen aged 13,
twenty-two aged 14, thirty-three aged 15, twenty-seven aged 16, fourteen aged 17, and
one aged 18 years. Forty-seven were 14 years and under, while seventy-five were 15
years and over. In 1952-53 the breakdown in this regard showed the same number of
boys admitted 14 years and under as 15 years and over. The fact that the boy population is older at any given time is important as indicative of the degree of difficulty likely
to be encountered in dealing with older boys in an open institution where there is no
screening at intake.
Fiscal Year
Number in School, April 1st	
Number A.W.O.L., April 1st	
Number in Crease Clinic, April 1st	
Number in Oakalla, April 1st	
Number on extended leave, April 1st
Number of new admissions	
Number of recidivists	
Total number of admissions .	
Percentage of recidivism	
Number of releases	
Number A.W.O.L., March 31st	
Number in Crease Clinic, March 31st
Number in Oakalla, March 31st	
Number on extended leave, March
Number in School, March 31st	
Average daily population	
Total inmate days	
Average length of stay in months	
- -
1 Recidivists included,
2 Not recorded.
A parole system was used whereby boys were returned to the School without affecting
lip The highest number of boys in the School during the year at any one time was 113,
while the lowest was 79. Admissions were from forty-three Juvenile Court areas throughout the Province. Distribution of admissions according to Social Welfare Branch regions
was 22 from Region I, 53 from Region II, 11 from Region III, 11 from Region IV,
7 from Region V, and 16 from Region VI. Two boys were from the Yukon Territory,
in accordance with a special arrangement between the Province and the Territory.
Responsibility for work with the families in the communities and supervision of the boys
following release was undertaken by various social agencies. The Provincial Probation
Service and the Vancouver and Victoria Juvenile Court workers now carry the majority
of such cases. The Social Welfare Branch accepts responsibility in those areas of the
Province not yet covered by the Probation Service and carries also certain cases otherwise
known to them.   The Children's Aid Societies look after their wards committed to the
 J 78
School The weight of work in this connection on the basis of admissions was: Children's
Aid Society, Vancouver, 3; Catholic Children's Aid Society, Vancouver, 2; Social Wei-
fare Branch, 22; Victoria Juvenile Court, 13; Vancouver Juvenile Court, 34; Provincial
Probation Service, 43. Service to the two cases mentioned above committed from the
Yukon are provided by the Territory's welfare services. Supervision for three cases had
not yet been decided at the year's end. |
The foregoing ten-year tabulation shows that 119 boys were released from the
School during 1953-54.
Attention is drawn to the percentage of recidivism as an indication of some change,
There are a number of factors that might contribute to a reduction in the number of boys
recommitted to the School. For example, improved probation services following release
might account for a reduction. On the other hand, juveniles who have been in difficulty
before and who are again charged with an indictable offence may be transferred to adult
Court and committed to an adult institution. On the other hand, the Boys' Industrial
School may be able to take some credit at least for the fact that the social-work approach
initiated three years ago may be having effect.
HSr The word 1 treatment" in the Industrial School is a word whose meaning reaches
into all phases of a boy's life in the School. Any situation in which he may find himself
provides an opportunity for him to resolve the problems of adjustment. Every staff
member must have an understanding of the School's basic purpose of rehabilitation so
that an attempt can be made to help a boy whatever the staff member's particular specialty
may be. The cook, the teacher, the gardener, the nurse, the group worker, all fulfil their
function in a different setting, thus providing a variety of experience in a controlled
environment. The several abridged statements constituting the balance of this report
are indicative of the experiences provided for the boys in the various School settings.
The boys in the Industrial School enjoy general good health. However, their stay
in the School gives an opportunity to attend to those physical needs that are disclosed by
the thorough physical examination given the boy upon admission. During the year
thirteen boys had tonsils and adenoids removed, one boy had a herniotomy, and two boys
had mastoidectomies. All told, for various reasons, thirty-six boys were in hospital for
a total of 255 days. Besides this, boys received attention to minor conditions both in
the School sick-bay and the doctor's office.. "%x;
One hundred and twenty-four boys were X-rayed at the New Westminster Chest
Clinic. Crease Clinic X-ray service was available to the School in eighty instances for
diagnostic purposes, and the Provincial Mental Hospital laboratories gave help on fifty-
two occasions apart from the 122 sedimentation rates done on new admissions. The
Provincial laboratory in Vancouver did a Kahn test in the case of each boy admitted
during the year.
Two hundred and fifty-one boys attended the Out-patients' Department Dental Clinic
at the Vancouver General Hospital for 123 clinic-days and a total of 593 appointments.
The treatment given included 143 extractions, 553 fillings, 5 X-rays, and 3 prophylaxis.
Thirteen boys were provided with dentures, and one denture had to be repaired. Generally speaking, as will be indicated by the figures, the extent of the work required seems
to be excessive. This is further indicated by the fact that during the year one boy alone
required as many as seventy-four visits, and that the dentistry required was completed
only m the cases of sixty-one boys. Boys were given attention to eyes as required, three
being provided with glasses.
The recitation of figures indicates the volume of service given and the splendid
co-operation received from agencies serving the School. However, in such a brief
synopsis the boy might be overlooked. He sometimes approaches the physical examination, the visit to the dentist, or the need for an operation with some considerable anxiety.
While sympathetic handling of boys by all concerned is the order of the day, it is on the
special occasions that this comes to the fore. Some boys shy from the needle whether
for the taking of a blood sample, immunization, or freezing a gum. Real teamwork
frequently goes into helping a lad overcome his fears. Nurse, group leader, and caseworker all lend a hand as opportunity presents itself. Frequently, in the case of dentistry,
to the School chauffeur, who takes the boy to the clinic, goes the honour of giving the
lad the reassurance he needs to go through with the ordeal.
Classroom and shop instruction is of major importance in the life of the boys in
the School. There is considerable and understandable retardation on the part of many
boys as far as regular school subjects are concerned. Truancy, inattention, and hostility
toward the authority of the teacher have been common experiences. For this reason,
a somewhat different approach is necessary in the Boys' Industrial School. Agahi the
emphasis must be on personality adjustment—the content of the subjects constituting an
opportunity for a shared experience and for growth in self-discipline. The teaching here
differs somewhat from regular schools, since more individual attention is often necessary,
the boys being at different stages of development and progress through a key subject
such as mathematics.
A real difficulty in teaching in this setting is the fact that boys are unavoidably
committed to the School at any time during the school-year and frequently leave during
the term, although the usual tendency is to delay release until the Christmas or summer
The work in the shops cannot seriously be called vocational training because of the
comparatively short time boys are in training. The first few months are generally spent
in settling down. At best, the productive months can give a boy only an opportunity to
test out his liking for and adaptability in woodwork, motor mechanics, and gardening,
the practical courses offered.
Not all boys take academic studies, but all attend classes. The boys over 15 years
who have left school have a full weekly schedule of the three practical courses—one day
of maintenance duties, four periods of physical education, and two periods of discussion
of current events. i§ ^r
The statistical facts of school attendance for the fiscal year are as follows:—
Total number on academic roll as of April 1st, 1953  75
Total number of new enrolments during year  54
Total number leaving during year  72
Total number on roll as of March 31st, 1954  57
Average intelligence quotient of total number  88
As of the end of June, 1953, a total of sixty-one boys were attending academic
classes. Of this number, thirty-eight were promoted either at that time or at the end
of the summer session. This compared with a total promotion list of fifty-two out of
sixty-five pupils for the preceding year. As in other years, the greatest percentage of
failures occurred in the lower grades. Out of fifteen pupils in that group, only four were
promoted. A larger percentage of emotionally disturbed boys, resulting in greater
retardation, can be credited for the large number of failures.
Summer school under the direction of the regular teachers was again in operation.
Remedial work was stressed.    A number of visits to industrial plants and cultural
exhibits were arranged.   As on previous excursions, conduct of the boys was excellent
and earned the favourable comment of the personnel of the places visited.
The academic programme for the first few months of the year was seriously dis.
rupted by illness of the teachers, all members of the teaching staff being absent at one
time or another for periods ranging from two weeks to two months. This delayed the
inauguration of a new programme until the month of October. This programme con-
sisted of placing all boys in the institution into eight classes. The academic and vocational staff was reorganized so that as far as possible each class could be given the type
of instruction compatible with its requirements. It was found necessary to make certain
adjustments from time to time due to fluctuation within the classes, caused mainly by
departures and new admissions.   At the year's end this programme was still in operation,
A total of eighteen boys took correspondence courses. Most pupils enrolled to
earn extra credits for the year's standing. Although no boy remained long enough to
finish his course, several took the courses home with the intention of completing the
work when they returned to public school. a£
Close co-operation between those responsible for the treatment programme and
the academic and vocational staff resulted in a better understanding of the needs of the
boys. As an example of this, one boy was taken out of regular classes, where he was
doing very poorly, and placed under close supervision with a full correspondence programme. Academically the results exceeded the greatest expectations. This lad accomplished more in two months than he had in the previous year. f
A total of 127 boys attended motor-mechanics classes. The programme followed
was essentially the same as in the preceding year, namely, the maintenance of School
vehicles.   A welcome addition to shop equipment was a new two-stage air-compressor.
A total of 172 boys registered for woodwork classes during the year. The woodwork course has more universal appeal than any of the other courses offered, academic
or otherwise. It has not of late followed the regular curriculum but has been a combination of woodwork and hobbycraft under the guidance of a qualified social worker.
The boys make many articles, such as bowls turned on the lathe out of burls, rustic table-
lamps, small coffee tables, and many other things. These they proudly take or send
home, usually to mother. Much of the work is very well done, although sometimes, and
characteristic of the boy, the patience to finish carefully, especially earlier pieces, may
be lacking.
The picture of training in work habits is not complete without mention of cooking,
tailoring, and general duties. Each cook—there are two—has a crew of four regular
boys who do not attend academic classes. These boys get real practical experience in
the kitchen, and during a year, because of admissions and releases, probably as many
as twenty-four boys receive a good introduction to this very worth-while trade.
The same can be said for the tailor-shop, except that not more than two boys can
assist the tailor at any one time. This trade is not a popular one, but usually there are
two boys who like the security they get from a regular job. The boys who work with
the cooks and the tailor do so for a half-day, and for the balance of the day participate
in the regular schedule, which is so designed as to give them a good variety of the other
courses available to them.
The general duties, a share of which each boy must do according to a fixed schedule, constitute cleaning, scouring, polishing, bed-making, dish-washing, waiting table,
grass-cutting, and other household duties. Such work constitutes an opportunity for boys
to learn good work habits and to associate with staff in such situations.    |
At the beginning of the fiscal year 1953-54 the School was fully ^staffed in the
social casework section by a casework supervisor and two caseworkers.   For seven and
one-half months this happy condition prevailed, and there was demonstrated what could
be accomplished when such services are available to meet and deal with those emotional
problems of the boys which could not be dealt with by their counsellors in the group
setting. The presence of the social caseworkers was also felt through their contact with
other staff members, and the prospect of accelerated staff training because of the better
balance between professionally trained and in-service trained social workers looked
bright. However, the two caseworkers were attracted to other positions and left the
School in the late fall of 1953, leaving the casework supervisor alone to do what little
one person could do. The fact is that one worker can do little more than attend to case
correspondence and arrange Child Guidance Clinic sessions.
During the year the services of the Child Guidance Clinic were called upon for 88
psychological examinations including vocational and aptitude testing, 161 psychiatric
interviews, and 99 case conferences. Within the School the social caseworkers held
823 supportive interviews, 247 intensive interviews, 126 collateral interviews, 626 consultations with staff, 209 supervision periods, and 27 case conferences. In addition,
there were 10 visits to boys transferred to Oakalla, 26 hospital visits, and 19 Court
appearances in support of boys facing further charges.
It is hoped that two social caseworkers will be found to fulfil the need in this regard.
The work of the casework section is vital, as the line of communication between the
community, the psychiatric and other such services, and the rest of the School. Instead
of being diminished, the services of this section should be augmented by the addition of
an experienced clinical psychologist, who could do much to assist in the general understanding of the boys and their potentialities. The need in this regard will become more
pronounced when the School moves to its new setting at Brannan Lake, Vancouver
The programme in this training-school for delinquent boys has as its major goal
the development of well-rounded personalities and good standards of personal conduct
in its students. These goals are achieved through the use of many skills and services
provided by a variety of workers and agencies, all designed to help the boy concerned to
change his behaviour pattern into one which is more acceptable in the society of to-day.
One of the common problems met by workers in our School is the feeling of inferiority
found in so many anti-social children. In order to help a feeling of equality, or at least
acceptance to develop, a programme providing a variety of experiences offering opportunity for accomplishment is carried on as a regular part of school activities. In the
day-to-day life of the School, every effort is made to provide an atmosphere in which
boys feel that they are accepted and treated as being worthy citizens. An example of
progress in this direction was the change in April, under which boys and staff were served
the same meals. The effect of this has been to help to remove the feeling of inferiority
which boys held in this respect.
Other aspects of programme designed to aid in this development are the activities
which are as close as possible to the normal wholesome activities of boys in their home
communities. Examples of these are overnight ski trips to Hollyburn Ridge, two of
which were enjoyed in April; league basketball games with community teams, in this
case the New Westminster Y.M.C.A.; and a School model aircraft contest which was
very successful, the winners enjoying a flight through the Fraser Valley and over the
In May and June a number of hikes, cook-outs, wood-cutting trips, lacrosse games,
and visits to Ruskin Dam, White Rock, and Stanley Park were enjoyed. The behaviour
of the boys on these trips is usually so good that they are complimented upon it. One
outstanding event was the Coronation celebration, which was planned by the boys with
staff assistance and was very impressive and enjoyable.
In July a major change was made in that the group leaders were made responsible
for dealing with minor behaviour problems, referring more serious difficulties to the
caseworkers, who in turn would consult with the Treatment Director when necessary,
The result of this has been to encourage boys to look to their group leaders for aid in
solving the everyday problems. This helps considerably in the development of the good
relationships between boys and their leaders, so important in the treatment of delinquency
The summer programme of special events consisted of camping trips to Davis Lake,
sailing on English Bay, and attendance at the P.N.E. Shrine Circus and at the Water
Follies in New Westminster. The outstanding event of the summer was the School's
participation in the P.N.E. Hobby Show for the first time. The display of artwork, model
craft, woodwork, metalwork, and miscellaneous hobbies drew many favourable com-
ments. The booth was manned each evening by one of the social workers, and many
questions regarding the School were answered for interested inquirers. Noticeable and
encouraging was the support given by the general public to the treatment approach.
An overwhelming majority of the people who stopped to talk to the workers on duty
expressed pleasure and interest in the type of programme which the School is attempting
to implement at this time. | I
In October two more wood-cutting expeditions to Hollyburn Ridge were enjoyed
as the boys helped to prepare the West Vancouver Kiwanis Club's cabin for the winter,
Another trip to Davis Lake concluded visits to that popular camping spot for the season
In November an interesting and successful experiment was begun. It was the
organization of a senior boys' dancing club which met weekly, and which at the end of
the fiscal year was still " going strong." Instructresses and partners were volunteers from
the nursing staff at Essondale, who proved to be ideal in this capacity. The effect of this
activity was noticeable in the lessening of anxiety among the boys in relation to their
social contacts and their gaining of poise and confidence in meeting members of the opposite sex in a normal way.
During the winter months the programme was adjusted to the requirements of the
season, indoor sports and hobbies predominating, although the heavy snowfall gave an
opportunity for sleigh-riding and snowballing, which were very much enjoyed. A basketball league, composed mostly of New Westminster teams, was entered by a Boys' School
team which worked its way into the play-offs, losing in the final game in a sportsmanlike
manner. The improvement in over-all behaviour of members of the majority of this
team was most encouraging in relation to their general treatment.
During the late winter and early spring, intense enthusiasm for model aeroplane
and boat building swept the School, and many fine gasoline-powered craft were in operation. The feeling of accomplishment which results from the successful building of
a model is probably the most valuable result of this activity. Boys who have formerly
gained recognition for their anti-social activities have found satisfaction and pride in their
skill in creating and operating models and have made great strides in their rehabilitation
through this part of the School programme.
In March, two week-end ski trips to Hollyburn Ridge concluded the ski-ing programme for the year. So well behaved were the boys during their visits to the mountain
that the cabin custodian wrote the School a letter of appreciation. An opportunity to
purchase twenty-nine pairs of used skis was seized upon, making future ski trips muck
easier to arrange.
The final highlight of the year was the School Hobby Show, which presented a well-
balanced display of boys' abilities. A number of parents and friends visited the show
and saw the display of flying which followed.
In general, the boys are continuing to become more responsive to treatment and to
develop better attitudes toward adults as their relationships with staff members improve.
When the present staff and administrative problems are resolved, the treatment of **
unfortunate youngsters should become much more effective and rewarding. However,
in spite of these difficulties, the majority of our staff have worked as well as possible under
the circumstances and deserve much credit for their efforts.
The co-operation of numerous service clubs, entertainment organizations, and individuals has made possible the wide variety of programmes enjoyed by the boys during the
year. Their help is greatly appreciated. The assistance of the community in these
respects helps prepare the boys in the School for their ultimate return to the community
as self-respecting citizens.      "'d
Parental Relationships j|
With both parents living  54
With both parents dead  2
With mother living and father dead  8
With father living and mother dead  2
With father dead and mother married again  8
With mother dead and father married again  1
With both parents living but separated  8
With parents separated and mother married again  25
With parents separated and father married again  3
With parents separated and both married again  4
With mother living and father's whereabouts unknown  5
With father living and mother's whereabouts unknown  2
Total  122
Expenditure and per Capita Cost
Salaries  $150,794.80
Office expense  2,111.15
Travelling expense   1,827.74
Maintenance of buildings and grounds  2,642.62
Heat, light, power, and water  4,587.22
Medical services  8,796.10
Medical supplies  1,144.12
Provisions and catering  35,696.39
Clothing and uniforms  9,405.36
Laundry and dry goods  4,501.17
Maintenance and operation of equipment  1,546.83
Transportation   986.21
Office furniture and equipment  35.28
Equipment and machinery  525.27
Incidentals and contingencies  2,478.48
Repairs to furnishings and equipment  508.85
Training programme expense  3,918.49
Carried forward  $231,506.08
Brought forward j $231,506.08
W      Less—
Rent collected  $300.00
Unemployment insurance deductions   199.17
Meal tickets  2,172.00
Miscellaneous  103.80
Public Works expenditure         6,344.76
Decrease in inventory         1,306.94
Less maintenance receipts         1,896.82
Per capita cost, $6.32.
It is with regret that we have to report the absence of Mr. George Ross, Superintendent, from his desk since February 12th, 1954, due to the need for a major operation.
It would appear that a protracted convalescence will be necessary. We wish Mr. Ross
an early recovery and speedy return to his usual good health. In his absence the
Director of Industrial Schools has carried on in his stead and has been responsible for
this report.
The School would like to take this opportunity to thank, on behalf of boys and staff,
the many persons and agencies that have co-operated so generously in providing both the
services and the recreational opportunities that have been made available during this year,
H. E. Blanchard,
For George Ross, Superintendent.
I respectfully submit the fortieth annual report for the Provincial Industrial School
for Girls.
The year past has been one of transition and turbulence. Many changes have taken
place in efforts to move from a purely custodial institution to one involving custody with
treatment through the realistic approach to the problems of the individual child in custody,
and, through this, to treat those problems which have brought about the child's defiant
To accomplish this, a competent, skilled, understanding staff was of paramount
importance, but difficult to locate. There were many changes in staff personnel, with
resulting lack of sustained teamwork. These changes, and their resultant damaging
effect upon the children, brought about a state of unrest, insecurity, and frustration
among both staff and girls. At this time the detention area suffered especially, owing to
inadequate staffing. Girls left to themselves all day with little or no supervision or programme in a constrained situation became unpredictable, riotous, and explosive. Subsequently, provision was made for sufficient staff to cover this area both day and night.
The resulting programme and the warm understanding companionship of adults who
were able to accept and absorb the hostility of unhappy youngsters, without a lessening
of their expressions of liking and interest, have accomplished much in the progress of this
At this time also, provision was made for two night attendants—one for the general
group and the other for the detention area. The attendant of the detention area provided
the outlet for quiet conversation for the wakeful, confined child, the observation of the
seriously disturbed girl who might harm herself, and the prevention of plotting and
During the year there were two changes in caseworkers. This meant a break in the
continuity of interview service and the relationship established between worker and child.
In July the School was fortunate in securing the services of a trained, skilled, and experienced person for the newly established position of Treatment Director. Under her
guidance a programme of group activities, special-interest classes, staff-training, and
casework supervision was arranged. By careful allocation of authority to senior staff
members, a plan for continuous supervision of programme, staff, and girls was developed,
thus relieving the Superintendent of this twenty-four-hour duty. This became a necessity
as the Superintendent was no longer in residence in the School.
During the year the School experienced more escapes, more transfers to Oakalla,
more committals to Provincial Mental Hospital, more recidivists, and more destruction and
riotous behaviour than for some years. All this, while it might have been expected as
a normal procedure following conditions of change, had a demoralizing effect upon young
inexperienced staff and increased the already heavy load carried by more mature workers.
Also, much of this could be traced not only to the period of transition, but to lack of
adequate pre-sentence screening; to lack of segregation facilities for various types of
committals; and to lack of education of the public concerning treatment in the institutions.
The high rate of escapes was influenced to some extent by the lack of early repairs to the
building following destructive episodes. The post-committal screening in the School
resulted in transfers and committals to other centres of those girls whose needs were
beyond the facilities of the School to handle. However, had the School's facilities included
suitable areas for segregation, with adequate staffing to control and treat in separate areas
the various types of disturbance in these cases, no doubt the figure in the transfers and
committals to other centres {see Statistical Information at end of report) could have been
lowered.   IP
Weekly staff meetings, with three out of four used for case discussion and development of group leadership and individual supervision interviews, have done much to
develop team spirit and improve the techniques of staff. One meeting in four was used
for instruction and assistance with custodial and disciplinary problems. Several other
bright spots appeared during the year. The fat old horses, who used part of our arable
land for pasture and ate their heads off during the winter, as well as requiring the
time of a man to care for them, were replaced with mechanized equipment. The result
of this change-over is already evident. It means almost double the acreage under cultivation and an estimated surplus of produce that can be disposed of by distributing to other
institutions. Also, in this department a group of girls were instructed in florist and green-
house work.   Three girls graduated from this class to jobs in florists' shops.
A change was made in our dental programme. Heretofore such work was done in
the public school clinic, but during the year this service was provided at the Out-patients'
Department of the Vancouver General Hospital. This is a much more convenient
arrangement, and is easily dovetailed with other out-patient department clinics.
The old main-floor dressing-room had its face lifted by the provision of smart
matching lockers, which will supply ample hanging and shelf space for clothing and
personal treasures of each individual girl, who has her own key. Little by little, as the
year drew to a close, order and understanding were beginning to emerge from the
turbulent, transitional period, and the School was looking forward to constructive, progressive assistance for the children in care in the coming year.
Some cases, typical of those the School was called upon to handle, might be interesting at this point. |
A. was a recidivist Indian girl whose behaviour during first committal warranted
consideration of committal to Provincial Mental Hospital. She was returned at a time
when the staff was dealing with a highly explosive group including three girls later committed to Provincial Mental Hospital; recidivists of destructive, violent nature; and some
who had experimented with or become addicted to drugs. A. was later removed to
Oakalla following incidents of riot, threatening staff, and escape. She was later committed to Provincial Mental Hospital from Oakalla. |
C. and D. were two recidivists who were together in their first term. C. had used
drugs for some time before her first commital, and during her first term in the School she
instructed D. in all angles of the drug traffic. D., upon release, began the use of narcotics,
Owing to the lack of facilities for establishing a separate programme for two girls, and
faced with a repetition of C.'s previous indoctrination, the School reluctantly transferred
these two girls to Oakalla. W
Q. was an Indian girl, committed for the third time for intoxication, with a well-
established pattern of runaways. I
IE. was a recidivist who, during her first committal, had been transferred to Oakalla,
She was drug-addicted, and incited others to violence, riot, and escape. She was transferred to Oakalla for a second time.     ^
One more case, J.—comment is hardly needed, but it does point up the variety of
cases the staff has been called upon to deal with. J. was an Indian girl, mentally defective,
epileptic with frequent attacks, and pregnant. These were only a few of the girls who
made up the general group. %
A perusal of the group statistics shows an increase in the total intake, it being six
more than last year, which had been an increase over the previous year. Of these sixty-
eight committals, eighteen were recidivists. In two cases the girls received two commit*
within the fiscal year, and two more were committed for the third time. The greatest
number of committals followed charges of incorrigibility with the greatest nu*
charged in the 14-16-year group. This was followed by charges of sexual immorality
with the greatest number in the 15-16-year group. Third largest group of coming
followed charges of intoxication. It is interesting to note that, of ten such commit
eight were Indian girls of 17 years, and, of these ten, four were transferred toOa«
with two of these later committed to Provincial Mental Hospital. Of the sixty-eight committals during the year, eighteen were Indian girls. With this number balanced against
releases, the point was reached where half the population of the School were Indians, and
racial tension reached a serious point, with one episode of open hostility between the two
factions. K. was an intelligent Indian girl with a deep antagonism toward whites, and the
leader of the Indian faction. She was twice committed during this fiscal year, both times
for intoxication. Not long ago a somewhat heated discussion developed in a group with
regard to racial backgrounds, and K. startled everyone by saying, " What's all the talk?
We're all Canadians, aren't we? " This sense of citizenship is an important factor in any
rehabilitation planning.
One-fifth of the year's runaways were single episodes in which newly arrived, unsettled girls made one bid for escape. The remaining four-fifths involved twenty-nine
girls, each of whom had from two to fourteen escapes, and most of these had six or seven
escapes each. This pattern, once established, becomes difficult to redirect. If there were
suitable reception facilities for holding girls in a constructive orientation area, much of
the sudden precipitation into general programme could be overcome, and escape risk
diminished. The close custody required for established runawaysi in the present setting
is not wholesome, but is unavoidable. The additional staff coverage permitted for this
area has done much to improve conditions. Girls are never alone, and some programme
has been developed to alleviate the previous mental and physical stagnation, but the whole
set-up is far from ideal. Girls in the security quarters have the opportunity of working
their way back into the general programme with part-time work placement and earning
of extra privileges.
It is difficult to assess the matter of successful rehabilitation within the same year
that release takes place. Many girls who appear quite doubtful stub their toes frequently during the first months of release, but gradually find their feet and go forward to
steady jobs and happy marriages. On the other hand, suitable home or job placement
with every chance of success for the girl who appears to have adjusted well sometimes
fails to supply her needs, and she falters and fails in the long run. The record of successes
and failures is kept evergreen by constant letters, visits, and telephone calls from girls
who passed through the School over the past fifteen years. The help and guidance given
is acknowledged by their expressions of appreciation, or in some cases by their requests
for further assistance from a source they have learned to trust—the Girls' Industrial
School. It would seem only fair to wait a year to see what may be the outcome of this
year's changes in treatment and care.
In closing, may we express our thanks to all co-workers for their unfailing assistance
and support in times good and not so good; to those volunteers who have given their time
and service in the interest of the girls; and to all the kind and generous organizations
which have shown their interest in the welfare of the School.
 J 88
Population of School, March 31st, 1954
On roll, April 1st, 1953  45
Girls admitted during year April 1st, 1953, to March 31st,
1954  68
— 113
Officially released 1  55
Transferred to other institutions with subsequent official release from Girls' Industrial School _    9
Transferred to other institutions but not officially released from Girls' Industrial School within the year 12
Transferred out of British Columbia	
— 64
Total unreleased, March 31st, 1954    49
Places of Apprehension
Region I  13
Region II  31
Region III      2
Region IV      4
Region V  15
Region VI       2
Yukon Territory _      1
Total    68
Offences Committed
Offences against property      9
Offences of incorrigibility    29
Other offences 1   30
Total    68
Parental Relationships
Normal homes    27
Broken homes    40
Adoptive homes      1
Total    68
Ages of Girls Admitted
1952-53 1953-54
11 (Per Cent) (Per Cent)
12 years     ! 6 5.0
13 years  7.4
14 years ~~~["               2(X9 9.0
15 years                      20 9 24.1
16 years                    322 30.0
17 years                       24*2 24.1
^Expenses and Revenue Statement of School, March 31st, 1954
Total inmate-days from April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954  13,780
Per capita cost, one year       $2,868.54
Per capita cost, one day  $7,859
Operating expenditure by voucher—
Salaries     $65,232.81
Office and school supplies, etc.—
Postage, office and school supplies  $1,009.43
Telephone and telegraph     % 591.66
Travelling expenses  2,257.56
Maintenance of buildings and grounds  2,170.89
Equipment and machinery  3,125.19
Office furniture and equipment  212.09
Clothing   $2,736.72
Boots and shoes        612.86
§          3,349.58
Fuel, light, and water—
Fuel  $3,454.18
Water        350.10
Light and power     1,411.39
'--'l      % ' . :|fe: .            5,215.67
Groceries  $9,331.17
Meat     3,088.84
Fish        329.57 . dr
Medical attendance, medical supplies, hospitalization, and
dental cost—
Medical attendance      $698.00
Medical supplies        471.91
Hospitalization and surgery     2,037.80
Dental cost     1,074.00
Eyes examined and glasses provided        202.70
Good Conduct Fund  372.27
Incidentals and contingencies  181.09
Vocational and recreational supplies         2,219.42
Laundry and dry goods  216.54
Maintenance and operation of equipment  262.07
Total expenditure for year by voucher  $103,650.26
Maintenance and repairs (expended through Public Works Department)—
Salaries  $3,708.00
Maintenance of buildings and grounds     4,663.35
% I          8,371.35
Inventory, March 31st, 1953         2,675.36
Carried forward  $114,696.97
Brought forward  $114,
Proceeds from meal tickets  $1,152.00
Rent collected  248.29
Proceeds from sale of garden produce  226.13
Unemployment insurance refund  109.75
Refundable salary cheques  197.08
Office furniture (sundry credit)  61.85
Inventory, March 31st, 1954     4,377.79
—ft  ]       6,372,
-f                                         "      ' $108,324.08
Less maintenance        3,064.90
W            Total expenditure as per Public Accounts  $98,590.26
Add Public Works expenditure  8,371.35
Add inventory as at March 31st, 1953  2,675.36
Less inventory as at March 31st, 1954        4,377.79
Expenditure (as above)  $105,259.18
Respectfully submitted.*
(Miss) Ayra E. Peck,
I beg to submit herewith the annual report of the Provincial Home for the Aged and
Infirm, Kamloops, for the fiscal year 1953-54.
As in the past, the administration has striven continually to improve the appearance
and comfort of the buildings, and many improvements and renovations have been carried out.
There has been no major expense on new equipment wHhin the past year.
Considerable time has elapsed since the last revision of the Act, and it is the Superintendent's belief that it would be expedient to consider the revision of certain sections.
It has been noted that the general physical and mental condition o£ new applicants
entering the Home during 1953-54 appeared to be in a more advanced state of deterioration. The reason riaght be explained by more favourable economic conditions. Greater
Old-age Assistance benefits and more opportunities of casual labour have encouraged
prospective applicants to defer application. In consequence, many cases have been
admitted almost directly to the sick-ward. This trend naturally has increased the per
capita cost. The expanded sick-ward facilities have been taxed to their limit. Therefore
it is suggested that, in considering the needs for the future, consideration be given to the
provision for expansion of present accommodation for chronic cases or the establishment
of a suitable institution for the care of chronic bed cases.
The very nature of the infirmities of the men of the Provincial Home has not allowed
for much rehabilitation, but rather for extending necessary care, comfort, and entertainment for the remaining days of life. Nevertheless, there are some very interesting individuals. TTje old saying that once a prospector always a prospector was proved true in
the case of one new resident, who in his ninetieth year emphasized his intent to complete
necessary improvements to and the sale of his miping claims for a fabulous amount next
spring. At present in the spotlight is a gentleman of superior education, an art teacher
by profession, ^Jio is of the opinion that only a colleague of the profession could possibly
understand his present needs and position. He finds it very difficult to convey his requirements to the untutored. His present desire is suitable accommodation comprising a
bed and sitting room at least, a studio with the necessary appurtenances, in order that he
may paint when the urge moves him. However, it would appear that the urge to paint
has not moved him for many years, and, alas, it is now much too late in lif£, hence an
opportunity for rehabilitation has gone aglimmer. It affords great satisfaction to pacify
this and divers types and keep them happy.
As in the past, we have indeed been fortunate in securing the services o£ Ideal organizations to present concerts of diverse variety, including the now highly honoured High
School Band. Picture shows once a week are greatly appreciated, and religious services
are conducted by various denominations on certain days each week.
I       MARCH 31st, 1954
§Expenditures for the Fiscal Year Ended March 31st, 1954
Salaries  $83,153.92
Office expense  662.89
#r               Maintenance of buildings and grounds  855.36
Heat, light, power, and water  14,288.28
Medical services  3,361.58
Medical supplies  1,947.18
Provisions and catering  29,847.53
Clothing and uniforms  3,012.72
Laundry and dry goods  6,779.27
Maintenance and operation of equipment  309.24
Transportation   255.02
Equipment and machinery  400.31
Incidentals and contingencies  500.22
Burials  1,302.50
Less board ($2,094) and rent ($605)        2,699.00
Inmates in the Home, April 1st, 1953  112
Inmates admitted during the year    62
■% 'pi   174
Inmates discharged    31
Inmates deceased    20
I        9&     51
Total number of inmates, March 31st, 1954  123
Total number of inmate-days  41,292
Provincial Home expenditure  $143,977.02
Public Works expenditure        3,713.17
Total expenditure  $ 147,690.19
Cost per capita: $147,690.19~41,292=$3.57672.
Paid to Government Agent, Kamloops    $58,997.13
Net expenditure as per Public Accounts     $79,058.69
Add maintenance receipts       70,858.75
Add Public Works expenditure t         3,713.17
Less pensioners' comforts        5,940.42
Total expenditure (as above)  $147,690.19
Respectfully submitted.
H J. M. Shilland,
 j 94 %■•■■.    BRITISH COLUMBIA
I herewith submit the annual report of the administration of the § Welfare Ins%
tions Licensing Act" for the year 1953. As licences are issued on the basis offc
calendar year, this report covers the period from January 1st, 1953, to December 31st,
The total number of cases dealt with in 1953 was 898. Of these, 477 were licensed
institutions while the remaining 431 cases were pending applications or inquiries. During
the year 54 licensed institutions closed and 327 pending applications or inquiries were
also closed. As at December 31st, 1953, the total case load was 527, of which 423 were
licensed institutions and 104 pending cases.
I   Welfare institutions' licences are issued to cover the following types of care:—
(1) Full-time boarding care of children under 15 years of age.   This includes
|        the small private boarding home with two children, children's institutions,
and summer camps.
(2) Day-time care of children in kindergartens, nursery schools, and foster
day-care boarding homes.
(3) Homes for older people.
(4) Maternity homes.
(5) Hostels for fifteen or more unemployed employables.
A home and personnel must meet the requirements as set out in the Act and regulations before a licence is issued.
The Welfare Institutions Board held eleven meetings during the year, at which time
applications for licences were approved or refused and other matters coming under the
jurisdiction of the Act were dealt with. Dr. Harold J. Johns, Director of Vocational
Guidance, attended the February meeting to help the Welfare Institutions Board further
clarify subsection (b) of section 31 of the regulations to the Act. This subsection deals
with the qualifications of supervisors for pre-school centres. The personnel of the Board
is given at the end of this report.
A. Full-time Care of Children
Institutions for Child-care
There are ten licensed private institutions for the care of children in British Columbia. No new licences were issued in 1953. These institutions, with the exception of the
two largest, give specialized care to a small number of children, and usually the child's
stay in them is of short duration. The two large institutions are licensed for approximately seventy-five children each. These institutions have shown great improvement
during the past few years. The physical standards are comfortable, and the staffs in both
have been increased and appear better suited for the job of being with and training children. While there are no social workers employed in these institutions, the services of the
district social workers, the Child Guidance Clinic, and other welfare agencies are used.
Children in these institutions attend the local schools and are accepted as part of the
community. They make friends with the neighbourhood children who are living a happy-
normal family life with their parents and are frequently week-end visitors in these homes
Recently, when the matron of one of these homes was asked how many children were*
care she replied, 1 There are sixty-five, and isn't it terrible there isn't one real orphan
among them." Then she added, 11 don't mean it's terrible because there are no real
orphans, but I do mean it is terrible because all these children come from broken homes
and they have parents who do not want them and will not make homes for them." This,
unfortunately, is an indication of what is happening to family life to-day.   g
All children accepted in these two large institutions are normal, healthy children as
the institutions are not staffed to look after and train children needing special care.
The other institutions, with the exception of St. Christopher's, are in reality large
boarding homes for children who are away from home attending school as there are no
schools near their homes. The children board at the institutions during the school term
and return to their homes for the holidays. Many of the children also spend week-ends
with their parents.
St. Christopher's School in North Vancouver is a school for twenty retarded boys.
All admissions to the school are on the recommendation of the Provincial Child Guidance
Clinic. Each pupil is given individual training. He is taught very elementary school
work, housework, and crafts such as weaving, rug-making, and leatherwork, also carpentry and gardening. Many of the boys who have been trained at St. Christopher's are
now gainfully employed. *
% Welfare institutions are not increasing in number, but they are improving in quality
of care. Services to children and how well the job can be done is now more important
than quantities of children. The old picture of soap, wax, complete order, and conformity
is going, if it has not already gone. As Eva Burmeister, in her book " Forty-five in the
Family," says, | If we must lean too far one way or the other let us lean towards spoiling
the children a little rather than towards regimentation and rigidity." A little spoiling is
done in some of the institutions.
Number of institutions licensed in 1953  10
Number of children cared for_  643
Total days' care  140,269
Private Boarding Homes
The policy of licensing private boarding homes for children remains the same. The
two Children's Aid Societies in Vancouver and the Family and Children's Service in
Victoria have assumed the responsibility of recommending for licence and supervising
these homes. In the other parts of the Province this work is done by the district social
workers of the Social Welfare Branch.
The physical standards as set out in the regulations to the Act for these homes are
high. Also, the number of children in a home has been limited to five regardless of
space, and only three of these children can be under 6 years of age. Persons who want
to board children chiefly for financial reasons usually change their minds when these
requirements are explained to them. Many persons, however, who wish to board
children because they want to give them a home go to great expense to bring their homes
up to the standard of licensing. %■ If
In Vancouver the Private Boarding Home Committee, under the chairmanship of
Dr. Stewart Murray, Senior Medical Health Officer, with representatives from the two
Children's Aid Societies, the Foster Day Care Association, Metropolitan Health Committee, and welfare institutions, meets bi-monthly to deal with problems arising in these
homes and is constantly working toward improved standards and controls.
The co-operation of the daily papers, especially in Vancouver, in referring all
advertisements to board children to the Welfare Institutions Office, is appreciated and has
helped greatly in controlling this situation. These homes are visited upon referral, and
the majority cannot be licensed as they are far below the required physical standards.
In many cases there are social, economic, or marital problems existing which require
the services of a welfare agency.
There were more private boarding homes licensed and many more advertisements
referred in 1953 than in the previous year.
Number of children's boarding homes hcensed m 1953         43
Number of children cared for       166
Total days' care  30,553
I B. Day Care of Children
Foster Homes for Day Care
Foster day care is usually required for the children of a mother who must work in
order to support the family. Recently many requests have been received from mothers
who wish to work from choice.
In Vancouver the Foster Day Care Association, a Community Chest agency, pro.
vides a day-care service through its many Hcensed foster homes but limits the service to
the children of mothers who must of necessity work. Mothers are required to register
with the agency and are referred to the foster home which is nearest their home or place
of work. It is the responsibility of the mother to take her child to and from the home,
The cost of this day care is most moderate. Mothers may not be able to meet the full
charge but always pay something.   The agency helps out financially where necessary.
A good day-care programme for small children of working mothers is essential in all
communities as it has been a means of keeping homes together and has prevented tie
placement of children away from their parents.
Foster day-care homes in Victoria are supervised by the Family and Children's
Service and in the other parts of the Province by the district social workers of the Provincial Social Welfare Branch. Of the twenty-nine licensed foster day-care homes, five
are located outside Vancouver.
Number of foster homes licensed         29
Number of children cared for       324
Total days' care  26,428
Kindergartens, Play-schools, etc.
Why do parents send their children to pre-school? Dorothy Baruch, in her boot
I Parents and Children Go to School," lists the following reasons as given hy parents
(1) For sound adjustment.
(2) To help overcome problems.
(3) To prevent problems arising.
(4) For parking papooses.
(5) To relieve certain home conditions.
(6) For parent education.
(7) Because parents and child remain better friends when not perpetually
together. | |S
(8) As a transition to school.
ft (9) For intrinsic educational advantages.
It is concluded therefore that pre-school education serves a very real need in the
lives of many of our parents and children to-day. As a supplement to the home, it1
true, but it is important to remember that pre-school education does not take the p
of a satisfactory home-life. The young child has need of both. Also, modern scientific
study indicates that pre-school education has proved itself invaluable as a means of preventing maladjustment. By reaching the child and his family in his early years, before
he reaches public school, three of the greatest social and individual tragedies of our age
may be prevented—namely, prevention of disease, prevention of crime, prevention 01
maladjusted human beings. Dr. Gesell, an outstanding authority of child development
and formerly director of the Clinic of Child Development, Yale University, says, " The
defence of democracy cannot leave young children and their parents out of account.
So far as possible we must try to create equal opportunities for full development in the
early years of life. No years are more important. They come first and therefore they
influence all the years that follow. A well built ship must have a sound keel. A well
reared child needs a good pre-school education."
With such importance being placed on pre-school education, it is equally, if not
more, important that every pre-school centre have in charge a competent and well-trained
supervisor.^ Working in co-operation with the three pre-school organizations in the
Province—namely, the Vancouver Kindergarten Teachers' Association, Co-operative
Play Group Association, and the British Columbia Pre-school Education Association—
the Welfare Institutions Board has set up criteria governing the qualifications for preschool supervisors which have been included in the regulations to the Act. Training
courses for supervisors are given at the Vancouver and Victoria night-schools (Adult
Education Departments of the School Boards) during the winter, and special courses are
also available in the summer. In order that persons living in the outlying parts of the
Province may have benefit of training, the Extension Department of the University of
British Columbia is offering a correspondence course in Principles and Methods of
Pre-school Education. This course is to be supplemented by a summer demonstration
course in pre-school methods, and all who register for the correspondence course will be
required to attend.
The number of pre-school centres continues to increase, and schools have been
opened in all parts of the Province. Recently a pre-school centre was started at Masset
on the Queen Charlotte Islands, and also at Terrace, Robson, and many other out-of-the-
way places. There are constant requests for information about organizing a school,
qualifications of supervisors, programmes, materials, and equipment.
The following report received from a district worker after her visit to one of these
centres would indicate that the visit was enjoyed and gives an indication of the varied
programme planned for training the child. ft -M %
| The routine is broken by sightseeing expeditions. This week they are going to
the post-office. They have already been to the bakery. One day they had the wonderful
excitement of going to visit the elephant at the circus and meeting a little circus girl their
own age. She was a happy, bright, neatly kept little girl, and the children and their
supervisor asked if she could join them for the rest of the day at the kindergarten. Her
mother agreed and put on her bright circus costume for the occasion, which thrilled the
children. The little circus girl was also thrilled to enjoy part of the day in the kindergarten. From the children the worker gathered that the elephant put on a marvellous
show and did all the things according to the books that elephants are supposed to do."
Jill      Number of pre-school centres licensed in 1953 g i—^ 183 w
^|§|||§c      Number of children registered | _________:      8,046 |||i
-1§|||§.-      Total days' care ___- ___.r_.; -^ ^ 663,378        ,:   g
%- 3    ■     MATERNITY HOMES    ,      .    '..J   :'/".'."
There were no new maternity homes licensed in 1953, and the number of hcensed
homes remains at three. f§
ll Maywood Home, operated by the Salvation Army, has accommodation for twenty-
six mothers and sixteen infants. The United Church Home in Burnaby is licensed for
twenty mothers and ten babies, and Our Lady of Mercy Home, which is for girls of the
Roman Catholic faith, accommodates nine mothers and thirty-five babies. The policy of
the two former homes is that the baby and mother leave the home together, while in Our
Lady of Mercy Home the children may remain until they are 2 years of age.   All three
 j 98 J§) " 4V   I ' BRITISH COLUMBIA  |t  "||   ^; ||
homes work very closely with the two Children's Aid Societies and other welfare agencies
in making plans for mother and child. There are active women's auxiliaries connected
with all three homes. These auxiliaries provide comforts for the homes and also arrange
for instruction in art, pottery, weaving, sewing, and other subjects for the girls, All
homes are comfortable and cheerful, and the staff is kindly and understanding. |
While there were fifteen more mothers admitted to the homes in 1953 than in the
previous year, there were fewer infants and the total days' care given was also down.
These homes have proven over the years to be a valuable resource for our Province,
;        |   Number of homes licensed in 1953 .— 3
|| Number of mothers cared for       229
Number of infants cared for J       218
jjl Total days'care  25,852
IS Municipalities, organizations, and citizens generally are more aware of the needs
of senior citizens, especially the need for adequate and comfortable living-quarters.
Many homes were licensed in 1953, and there are many in the process of construction.
The Mennonite Benevolent Society is building at North Clearbrook a one-story stucco
home of modern architecture. The home will house thirty persons, and the plans call for
twenty private rooms and five semi-private rooms. The large, bright, homey living-room
and dining-room look toward Mount Baker. The electric kitchen is most convenient, with
all the latest equipment. The large sunroom on the south end of the building, which opens
to the garden, is a comfortable place to relax. An addition of twenty-four private rooms
with sitting and sun rooms is being added to Normanna, the home of the Norwegian
Society, which will be completed and ready for occupancy early in 1954. The City of
New Westminster has plans to build a home for twenty-six persons. All rooms will be
private. The home will be located in Pioneer Village. The King's Daughters have completed plans to add sixteen private rooms to their home. This addition will be completed
in 1954. f f |
The majority of homes in British Columbia accommodate from twenty to fifty
persons, and care should be taken to see that homes do not become too large. A home
for thirty to forty persons is the most satisfactory from the point of administration, costs
of operating, and services. The atmosphere in these smaller homes is more friendly and
service to the guests can be given on an individual basis. j-l
The most popular and sought-after accommodation is the private room, but unfor- '
tunately at the present time there are not enough of these private rooms to meet the need.
The room for two persons works out very well when room-mates are carefully chosen.
More than two persons in a room, regardless of space, affords very little, if any, privacy,
and very often difficulties and disagreements arise. jf
Health needs for the persons on some form of social assistance are fairly well taken
care of. Problems do arise at times when the older person becomes ill and must remain
in the boarding home longer than he should because of lack of other suitable accommodation. There are also difficulties at times in getting older people admitted to hospital
The older person who has become senile also creates a problem. These persons are
childish, live in the past, but are otherwise harmless. Many of them are not considered
committable to a mental hospital. They disrupt the otherwise peaceful atmosphere of *
home and upset the other old people. Reports from the Scandinavian countries would
indicate that this problem has been solved by establishing boarding homes especially W
the care of the aged senile. There is trained, kindly staff, and the homes are closely
Recreation is important to older people. There are radios, television sets, boob.
magazines, cards, checkers, cribbage, and many other things of interest.  Home movie
are also shown in some of the homes. A church service is held in most of the homes
fortnightly especially for those persons who are unable to attend church. Concerts, treats,
and transportation are provided by interested local groups. Old people should be permitted to do what they want to do, and above all they should be encouraged to keep active
and interested in living as the " rest cure " for old age is outmoded. A great deal of
forgetfulness, senility, and other characteristics commonly attributed to ageing can be
prevented if opportunities are provided whereby older people can be helped to live more
active and satisfying lives. Community-planned recreation to include the older people
will solve many of these problems. Recreation for the younger is taken for granted
to-day. There is now another portion of the population for whom recreational plans
must be made.
;.:i| Romance still holds a place in the lives of our older people. This year one such
romance ended in marriage. Best wishes for their future happiness were sent to the
happy couple.
i^p Standards continue to improve in the homes. This Province is indeed fortunate in
having so many municipal, national, and church homes which have set a high standard
of accommodation and care to which all homes must certainly conform.
During the year a number of requests were received from many parts of Canada for
information about homes for senior citizens, and also for copies of the " Welfare
Institutions Licensing Act" and regulations.
Spl Number of homes licensed during 1953  133
Number of persons cared for 1       2,874
* Total days' care \  601,941
t|i No new homes were licensed in 1953. The four homes already licensed, all for
young women, were filled to capacity at all times during the year. Two of these homes
are located in Vancouver—namely the Residential Club and Bethel Home. Rainbow
House is in Victoria, and the Salvation Army Young Women's Lodge is in Prince Rupert.
All homes are located in good residential districts and provide a comfortable, cheerful
place with a family atmosphere for the girl away from home. Most of the girls are
employed, others are looking for work, and some are attending school. The board rate
is moderate, and girls are not asked to leave when unemployed or unable to pay their way.
There are no rigid rules and regulations, but there is understanding, guidance, and supervision. There are parties, entertainments, and happy get-togethers at which boy friends
are welcomed. Jg| Jl
This type of group living for the older teen-aged girl has proven successful. It
could be that homes of this kind would prove just as successful for boys of this age-group.
Number of homes licensed during 1953  4
Number of persons cared for.        406
Total days'care  15,642
With the scent of woodsmoke drifting in the air,
And the call of firelight we always love to share;
Visions of campfires all return and as the flames leap up and burn,
We dream of bygone campfires and long for those to come.
By now the camping season for 1953 is over, the campers have returned to their
homes, the counsellors and staff to their schools or employment, and the camp directors
have written § 30 " to another successful camping season. But there remain many happy
memories of new friends and experiences and a strong desire to go back to camp next
There were forty-two licensed camps, at which more than 12,000 campers enjoyed
a holiday. Through the Camp Referral Programme, some 300 Vancouver children, who
otherwise could not have afforded it, had a camp holiday. This programme is sponsored
by service clubs and the Community Chest.
The Provincial Health Branch arranges each year for sanitary inspection of summer
camps, and the reports received indicate that conditions are getting better. New buildings
have been constructed, water-supplies made safe, refrigeration added, and conditions
generally are improved. The Provincial Health Branch has under study a health report
card for campers. From information given on the card it is hoped that infection, which
often occurs in camp, can be controlled. This card will be ready for use before the 1954
season opens.
5||| In order to make the public more aware of the value of camping, the British Columbia Camping Association continued its educational programme during the year. In May
the association sponsored Camping Week throughout the Province. In Vancouver and
Victoria, civic officials participated in the opening ceremony and many stores had camp
display windows. The association also gave an institute for camp counsellors. The
institute was well attended, with more than 100 persons registered from all parts of the
Province. Sessions were held on water-front supervision, crafts, hikes, and programming
for wet days. There were also sessions for directors and administrators. The association
also edits annually a camp directory, giving specific information on camps in the Province,
This directory is a guide for parents when selecting a camp for their children. Any camp
can be included in the directory free of charge on submission of information about the
camp. The association also sends a monthly news-letter and other information to its
camp members. A shopping guide which gives information about obtaining and buying
all camp supplies was compiled by the association.
Enthusiasm this year for camps and camping has been very marked. Improvements
have been made not only in the physical and sanitary conditions, but there were also
better-trained staffs and programmes were geared to reach the high aim of camping,
which is I the enrichment in life of the whole camper."
It has been a good year.
Number of summer camps licensed in 1953         42
l;      Number of children cared for—     12,626
Total days' care |  118,713
Sincere thanks and appreciation are extended to all who helped with the administration of this Act.
J 101
Table I.-
-Showing a Comparative Summary of Information Regarding Premises Licensed
under the " Welfare Institutions Licensing Act"
Children—Total Care (Excluding Summer Camps)
Number licensed—
Boarding homes	
Number of children under care	
Number of days' care	
Women—Maternity %
Number licensed	
Number of persons under care	
Number of days' care	
Adults—Infirm and Unemployable
Number licensed	
Number of persons under care	
Number of days' care	
Number licensed	
Number of persons under care	
Number of days' care	
Children—Day Care
Number licensed	
Number of children enroUed	
Number of attendance days |	
Summer Camps
Number licensed	
Number of persons attending	
Number of attendance days	
1 Mothers and infants are included in these figures.
Table II.—Case Load Showing the Total Number of Licensed Institutions
and Pending Applications, 1953
Dec. 31,
in 1953
in 1953
Total Cases
Licensed at
Dec. 31,
Children—total care—
1. Boarding homes	
2. Institutions	
3. Camps	
Children—day care—
1. Kindergartens	
2. Foster day care	
1. Boarding homes	
2. Institutions	
Women—maternity homes.
Licensed December 31st, 1952
Number licensed in 1953	
Closed in 1953
 J 102
Table II.—Case Load Showing the Total Number of Licensed Institutions
and Pending Applications, 1953—Continued
Dec. 31,
New Cases
in 1953
in 1953
Pending Licences
Children—total care—
1. Boarding homes	
2. Institutions ~
3. Camps 	
Children—day care—
1. Kindergartens	
2. Foster day care	
1. Boarding homes	
2. Institutions	
Women—maternity homes	
Totel Pending
Cases at
Dec. 31,
Pending December 31st, 1952 ~
Pending in 1953 329
Closed in 1953
Total Cause Load
Licensed 423
Pending  104
The following are the members of the Welfare Institutions Board for 1953:—
Chairman: Mr. C. W. Lundy, Director of Welfare. f
Members:   Dr. G. Elliot, Assistant Provincial Health Officer, Department of
Health;   Miss Ruby McKay, Superintendent, Child Welfare Division;
Mrs. Edith Pringle, R.N., Inspector of Hospitals; Mr. J. Sadler, Administrator, Region II, Social Welfare Branch.
Chief Inspector: Mrs. Edna L. Page.
Respectfully submitted.
(Mrs.) Edna L. Page,
Chief Inspector of Welfare Institutions.
I beg to submit the following report on the activities of the Social Service Department
of the Division of Tuberculosis Control for the fiscal year 1953-54.
This year the tide of tuberculosis in British Columbia has begun to turn. There are
empty beds in the hospitals of the Division of Tuberculosis Control, and patients are
being admitted as soon as their disease is diagnosed. This removal of the infectious
patient from the community should be reflected in a decrease in the incidence of tuberculosis in this Province.
With the widespread use of the anti-microbial drugs the patients soon feel well, and
within a reasonable period their tuberculous lesions become stabilized so that the diseased
areas can be surgically removed. Before the medical and surgical advances in tuberculosis, the goal of treatment was to arrest the progress of the disease and to so fortify
the patient's general health that he could hold the disease in check, but the battle was
never completely won and the patient lived in the shadow of renewed hostilities whenever
his resistance to disease was lowered. Surgery has changed this, and there is a new spirit
of hope among the tuberculous. For the patients, surgery is something to achieve, and
from the commencement of treatment the energies of the patient are directed to this goal.
Even the most timid faces the battery of pre-surgical tests with confidence that he will be
successful and thus be slated for surgery. The year 1953 has seen a great increase in the
use of surgical resection to remove diseased portions of the lung, in preference to the
former procedure by which a permanent collapse of the infected lung was achieved to
facilitate the healing process.
Tuberculosis is not the great killer that it was, with only 141 tuberculosis deaths
reported in British Columbia in 1953. In the last decade tuberculosis mortality has
shown a decrease of almost 80 per cent. When the Indian population is excluded,
the figures are even more hopeful, with only 119 deaths recorded for the year. Of this
number, 70 per cent were in the age-group of 50 years and over. There were only three
children's deaths recorded, and they all occurred in patients under 4 years of age. The
mortality from tuberculosis among the Indians has always been very much higher than
for the rest of the population, and the rate is still almost three times that of the Province
as a whole. However, compared to the situation in 1944, the death rate among the
Indians has decreased almost 90 per cent in this ten-year period. Among the Indians it
is the children who are must vulnerable, with 40 per cent of the deaths from tuberculosis
being reported in patients under 20 years of age.
Morbidity statistics show the same favourable trend, with a decrease in new infections in all age-groups. Throughout the Province there were 1,501 new cases of tuberculosis (all types) reported to the Division of Tuberculosis Control, of which 407 were
among the Indian population. Excluding Indians, only 10 per cent of the total new cases
related to patients under 20 years of age, while patients over 50 account for about 30 per
cent of the total. The productive years between 20 and 50 had the highest attack rate,
with 60 per cent of the total number of reported cases coming from this group in the
population. Morbidity among the Indians showed a somewhat different picture, with the
younger age-group under 20 accounting for 55 per cent of the total.
Pulmonary tuberculosis in British Columbia is being diagnosed earlier in the course
of the disease.   Excluding the Indian group, only 13 per cent of the 960 newly reported
cases for the year were classified as far advanced. Forty-eight per cent were diagnosed
as minimal and 30 per cent as moderately advanced tuberculosis. This is reflected in fc
rate of admissions and discharges from the various hospital units during the year. Over
half the admissions had not been previously hospitalized for tuberculosis, and almost 75
per cent of the total number of patients discharged during the year have been in hospital
for less than one year.
In spite of the many positive aspects in tuberculosis-control, some patients are still
refusing to enter hospital, although their disease is progressing and they are a health
menace to those with whom they are in contact. Such people present a real problem to
the local public health authorities who are responsible for their supervision in the com-
munity because many of these patients are irresponsible and live under conditions that
facilitate the spread of tuberculosis. Legislation to provide compulsory treatment for
tuberculosis has been under review in this Province for some years, but there are many
obstacles to the administration of such legislation—the lengthy treatment, the difficulty of
effecting a permanent cure without the co-operation of the patient in taking the drugs
and recommended surgery, and, until this year, the shortage of beds in the Division of
Tuberculosis Control. However, with the improved bed situation, in 1953 one patient
was committed to Tranquille Sanatorium on the authority of the Deputy Minister of
Health as provided in the section of the | Health Act" related to communicable diseases,
The committal order was executed by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the
Superintendent of the Sanatorium was directed to hold the patient until such time as the
medical authorities should be satisfied that he was no longer a public health menace. The
patient did not challenge this legal process but settled down in hospital and made good
progress. At the proper time he voluntarily underwent surgery, which removed the focus
of his recurring infection. His post-surgical convalescence has been uncomplicated, and
within the year he should be able to return to work and to resume his family responsibilities. For this patient compulsory treatment was the security which enabled him to
relinquish his many family problems to the appropriate source of help in the community
and concentrate his energies on winning his fight against tuberculosis. During his hospitalization the patient has been able to use sustained casework service from the hospital
social worker and has developed considerable insight into the problems which he must
face when he is ready to return to the community. At the same time the Social Service
Department of the Tuberculosis Division has kept in close touch with the two Social
Welfare Branch offices involved in supervising the care of the patient's children, as well
as with the public health workers in the patient's home town. This case has demonstrated
that with the health and welfare agencies working together, compulsory treatment for
tuberculosis can be a positive experience for the patient who is unable to take responsibility for treatment on a voluntary basis.
The same kind of help is being given to patients in all the hospitals of the Division
by the nine social workers on the staff. The monthly case load averages about 140
patients per worker, with the proportion of cases active during the month ranging from
50 to 80 per cent of the total case load. In spite of the accelerated treatment, hospitalization for tuberculosis is still measured in months, and for patients with families this
involves many difficult adjustments. When the patient is the bread-winner, he must try
to relax in hospital and take advantage of the medical and surgical facilities available to
him, knowing the severe financial reverses that his wife and family are having to face
because his earnings have been interrupted. For most families, social assistance falls far
short of their usual income and requires a complete readjustment of their standard 0
living. The stable individual who has always been secure in his family relations can
weather the storm of this financial crisis, but for many patients financial dependency
strikes at the very roots of their personal security. They need a great deal of support afl
reassurance from the hospital social worker to accept their situation and to see within it
the things that are positive, such as the way the wife has responded to the challenge of
managing on a shoe-string budget or the resourcefulness that the children have shown in
the face of their changed circumstances. j|    gg
The home-maker who becomes a tuberculosis patient also faces many obstacles to
the peace of mind that is an essential part of the cure of this disease. It is difficult to
relinquish the key position that a mother enjoys in the family, and much of the social
worker's time with these patients is directed toward helping the mother see that until her
tuberculosis is under control she cannot discharge her responsibilities to her family.
Some of these patients have resources within their own family to take care of the situation
while they are in hospital, but this often incurs the kind of moral obligation that is hard
to accept and to repay. Responsible domestic help is difficult to find, and because of the
length of time that a substitute mother is needed by the TB. family, few fathers can
finance the cost. The most satisfactory solution that has yet been found to provide a TB.
mother with freedom from worry about her family while she is out of the home is a
subsidized and supervised home-maker service. The three years' experience which the
Division of Tuberculosis Control had with such a plan amply demonstrated this, but the
service was expensive, and so far it has not been possible to find the kind of financial
support that such a plan requires. The Social Welfare Branch has expanded its service to
include the financing of necessary housekeeping services to families in receipt of social
assistance or to those whose income is on the border-line of financial eligibility, and this
is a step in the right direction, but it does not cover that group of patients whose husbands
are earning sufficient wages to take care of the family's needs when the mother is well and
able to manage the home, but not enough to pay for the services of a responsible housekeeper when the mother is ill.
For the younger patient who has no responsibilities, there are many opportunities
available through the Rehabilitation Department of the Division of Tuberculosis Control.
There are qualified school-teachers in each of the hospitals to help the patients with a
wide range of academic and vocational subjects provided free of charge by the Provincial
Department of Health and other educational resources. These study projects give the
patient some focus for his leisure time in hospital and help to prepare him for gainful
employment after his tuberculosis is cured. In the hospital, re-establishment of the
patient in the community is the job of the entire staff, and the social worker's contribution
is to help the patient face the future in a realistic way and to make the best use of the
time and resources that are available to him in the hospital setting.
In addition to the patients who want to get better, there are some who are unable
to withstand the pressures that are an inevitable part of hospitalization for tuberculosis.
They feel well and they look well, and they cannot be convinced on an intellectual basis
that their tuberculosis is not under control. They do not respond to casework skills,
and when they become bored with hospital routines, they either sign their release and
leave hospital against medical advice or they behave in such a way as to disrupt the
hospital and they have to be discharged for disciplinary reasons. In 1953 about one
out of every four discharges was against medical advice. Of this number, almost a third
left the hospital with their disease active and unimproved. It is felt that with better
legal control of the recalcitrant patient many of them can be helped to settle down in
hospital and cure their disease. However, as long as the decision as to whether or not
they will take treatment rests with them, they will continue to be a problem to the health
and welfare authorities in the community.
-§L In this connection there were two meetings during the year with representatives of
the Vancouver City Social Service Department, the Metropolitan Health Committee, and
the Division of Tuberculosis Control to clarify the policy with regard to social assistance
to patients discharged without medical approval to the Vancouver area. It was agreed
that because tuberculosis allowances are recommended on medical grounds to give the
tuberculous patient extra diet and rent to speed his recovery, the patient who does not
co-operate in medical treatment disentitles himself to special consideration as a tubercu
lous patient. Accordingly, it was arranged that in such cases the Division of Tuberculosis
Control will not recommend TB. extra allowances unless the circumstances of the dis
charge are extenuating. H, however, at the end of a month in the community the patient
has demonstrated his ability to co-operate with the public health authorities by reporting
regularly for treatment and examinations as prescribed, then the local public health
department may recommend to the City Social Service Department that the patient be
granted TB. extra allowances. This new policy gives the local health authorities the
means of encouraging the patient who has not been able to adjust to hospital life to
co-operate in treatment on an out-patient basis. |
Another achievement in 1953 was the establishment of a clearly defined policy by
which the Division of Tuberculosis Control provides minimum clothing requirements on
the basis of need to indigent patients, to enable them to follow prescribed exercise orders,
During the year, efforts were continued to improve the liaison between the child
welfare authorities in the community and the Social Service Department of the Division
of Tuberculosis Control in relation to the child whose only parent has been admitted to
a Tuberculosis hospital. When the child-caring agency has no access to the parent
because of the geographical location of the hospital, support to the patient in making
plans for the child must be given by the social worker in the tuberculosis hospital. When
there has been some element of neglect before the parent became sick, as was the situation
in three cases in Tranquille Sanatorium during the year, the present illness of the parent
tended to cloud the need of the child for legal protection. Meetings with the Superintendent of Child Welfare and the two Children's Aid Societies in Vancouver again
emphasized the necessity for constant sharing of information between the child welfare
worker and the hospital social worker to prevent the agencies from working at cross
purposes with resultant damage to both mother and child.
H Assistance to the Vancouver Preventorium continued to be given by one of the
members of the staff of this Division, with regular visits to the institution and consultation
with the matron on problems arising in connection with the children at the Preventorium.
Most of these related to discharge plans. In the course of the year a new Request for
Home Report form was devised for use by the public health nurses in the Province to
give the kind of information about the child that the Preventorium needs at the time of
admission and that the public health nurse needs at the time of discharge in order to be
helpful to the parents in giving proper care to the child when he returns home.
In addition to the service to patients on the wards and in the out-patient clinics oi
the Division, the Social Service Department continued to participate in the Division's
educational programme for student-nurses, public health nursing students, and new
public health nursing staff being oriented in the activities of the Division of Tuberculosis
Control. Other educational projects of this Department included participation by the
Provincial Supervisor in the course on Medical Information given to the second-year
students at the School of Social Work at the University of British Columbia; the seminar
conducted for the in-service training students of the Social Welfare Branch on Social
Work in the Medical Setting; and the orientation of new Social Welfare Branch staff in
the functions of the Division of Tuberculosis Control in its Social Service Department
Again this year the School of Social Work used the Social Service Department of this
Division for the placement of a first-year student who was interested in social work in
a medical setting.
The year has been a busy one, but with a more stable staff than this Department has
enjoyed for some considerable time, 1953 was a year of consolidation.
Respectfully submitted. 'Wji
(Miss) Enid S. Wyness,
I Provincial Supervisor, TB. Social Service.
I wish to submit the following report on the activities of the Social Service section
of the Division of Venereal Disease Control for the fiscal year 1953-54.
Counselling on a casework basis continued to be given by the social worker at the
Vancouver clinic, and during the year 778 patients were interviewed following treatment.
In addition to this service to the patients, the clinic social worker participated in a study
project undertaken by a senior medical student at the request of the Director of the
Division, to investigate the problem of recidivism in venereal disease. The study by
Donald O. Anderson, entitled "A Sociological Analysis of the Venereal Disease Repeater-Patient," and involving statistical research into the incidence of repeated infections in British Columbia also included a detailed analysis of the case-histories of all
the patients treated for venereal disease at the Vancouver clinic of the Division between
February 1st, 1953, and July 1st, 1953, who had had a previous infection between February, 1952, and the commencement of the study. There were fifty-two male and twenty-
five female patients in this group. Information for the case-histories was obtained by the
clinic social worker in an interview specifically designed to meet the requirements of the
study. The form of the interview was standardized and covered eight main areas of the
patient's life, including family relationships in childhood, religious training, educational
achievement, social development, employment history, marital experience, and psycho-
sexual development. Each interview required approximately one hour. In spite of the
amount of material covered, the social worker experienced very little difficulty in enlisting
the co-operation of the patients in the project, and the author of the study paid great
tribute to the skill of the social worker, which enabled her to gain the necessary information while making the interview a positive experience for the patient. At the conclusion
of each interview the social worker entered the information on a mimeographed interview form and passed it along to the author for coding.
The results of the study indicate that one out of three patients repeats the experience
of venereal infection, and that of this group two-thirds repeat within one year of their
first infection. The repeater group represents the hard core of the problem of controlling venereal diseases because the people who become repeaters do so because of
deep-seated personality disorders that cannot be eradicated by the treatment facilities
that are presently available. Such people are the product of broken homes, their family
ties are weak, and they have revolted against strict religious training as children. They
are lacking in self-confidence, they are lonely and unable to establish stable personal
relationships. Their educational level rarely exceeds Grade VIII, and they move about
from job to job because of restlessness, boredom, and inability to take responsibility.
If they stayed on the job, these male repeater patients would earn in the neighbourhood
of $4,000 a year. As it is, their wages are dissipated in the periods between jobs. Their
recreation is almost entirely commercial, with the down-town beer-parlours their main
social outlet. Most of the female patients included in the study did not attend the Vancouver clinic but were known to the public health nurse who operates the examination
centre at the Vancouver City Gaol. The female repeater group is more homogeneous
than the male group. There is a higher incidence of promiscuous behaviour among the
women, and they commence their sexual activities at an earlier age than the male
repeaters. Their marital history is unstable, and very few have any gainful employment.
Many of them live on the fringe of crime, with two-thirds of the female group having a
Court record. Narcotic addiction is a real factor among female repeaters in contrast
to the male group, where this does not appear to be a problem. Illegitimacy and lack
of responsibility for their children is characteristic of this female repeater group.
During the year the clinic social worker continued to evaluate the patients being
routinely interviewed as part of their treatment at the Vancouver clinic, in accordance
with the rating scale described in the annual report of this section for 1952-53. With
two exceptions, much the same pattern emerged. About two-thirds of the total number
of patients interviewed were considered to be the kind of people for whom the counsel-
ling interview can be a positive experience. The other third corresponded to the repeater
group described in Mr. Anderson's study. In the current year there was a decrease in
the proportion of the patients rated as being reasonably adequate people with capacity to
take responsibility for their behaviour and to learn from experience. In 1952, 16^
cent came within this classification, as against 10 per cent in 1953. There was a cor-
responding increase in the proportion of patients rated as people whose promiscuous
behaviour was symptomatic of some more basic personality difficulty. Twenty-nine
per cent was so classed in 1953, as compared to the 22 per cent in the previous year,
For these patients the interview with the clinic social worker was an opportunity to sort
out their problems and to make a start at seeking some solution to them. |
Such a person was Miss M., an 18-year-old girl who had come to Vancouver from
a small town in the Interior of the Province. She was a trained stenographer and had
obtained employment without much difficulty, but she had not found a social group
with which she could associate herself. Loneliness was a new experience for this smalltown girl, and she had no defences to combat it. She became involved with a married
man whom she had met several times in a corner restaurant, and an intimacy developed
before the girl realized the consequences of it. When he advised her to report to the
venereal-disease clinic for examination as one of his contacts, the girl was distraught
and arrived at the clinic in a state of panic. On medical examination she was found
not to have an infection, but because of her emotional state she was immediately referred
to the clinic social worker by the attending physician. The attitude of acceptance and
understanding of her difficulties by the social worker enabled the girl to pour out the
story of her unhappiness in the big city. Toward the end of the interview she was able
to see that she wanted to remain in the city, where there were good employment opportunities, but she recognized she would have to find some more suitable way of meeting
young people who, like herself, needed healthy recreational outlets. The resources of
the Y.W.C.A. were described, and an appointment was made for her to talk with the
girls' counsellor there. Miss M. received a warm reception at the Y.W.C.A., and she
soon made friends in the various group activities in which she participated. Through
the disaster of having to come to the venereal-disease clinic this girl learned many important things about herself, about sexual behaviour in general, and about the venereal
diseases in particular. Through the skills of the caseworker this patient had the opportunity of defining her goals in life and of gaining some insight into how they might be
achieved. Without this kind of counselling, her experience at the clinic could have
intensified her confusion about herself and her unhappiness in the unfamiliar setting
of a large urban area.
Another patient for whom the venereal-disease clinic experience was the starting-
point for help with his particular problem was Tom J., a 17-year-old boy. He was
brought into the clinic as contact to a male patient with gonorrhoea. Although the boy
vigorously denied to the epidemiology worker that he had ever had any sexual contact
with a man, during the interview with the social worker he did admit to sex play with
other boys some years previously. He had mixed-up feelings about himself in relation
to sexual behaviour, and this referral to the venereal-disease clinic as contact to a
homosexual patient had brought his confusion into sharp focus. In talking about himself, his main problem was his inability to mix in a social way with the opposite sex, and
he wondered if his earlier sexual activity with boys was at the root of his present at
culties.   He had no one in his family to whom he could turn for help with this probto
as his father had deserted the family when the boy was small, and he had never established a close relationship with his mother because of her preoccupation with earnin
living. Now that the boy was out of school and had started to work, his shyness had
become a real handicap and he was asking for help in handling it. Because venereal
disease was not the problem with this boy, it was inappropriate that his more basic
problems should be dealt with in a venereal-disease clinic, and a referral was made to
the Psychiatric Department of the Out-patients' Department at the Vancouver General
Hospital for further assessment and planning. Tom's situation highlighted the urgent
need for expanded psychiatric facilities on an out-patient basis to deal with problems of
this kind. Because he was working, it was difficult to arrange the kind of treatment plan
that he could carry out, and yet the importance to him of getting the kind of help he
needed at this point in his life should not be underestimated.
if Another kind of problem which frequently comes to light at the venereal-disease
clinic, and for which there is practically no resource, is marital conflict. At the time
Mr. C. was seen by the clinic social worker he was so distressed he was almost incoherent.
He had acquired an infection from his wife, in whom he stated he had previously had
implicit faith. Although he said that their marriage had been a very happy one, he was
now ready to break it up over the episode which had led to his wife becoming infected
with a venereal disease. With the support and encouragement of the clinic social worker,
Mr. C. finally recognized that his wife had been more or less victimized while she was
under the influence of alcohol, and that the incident was an isolated one which had
very little meaning in terms of her usual pattern of behaviour. At the conclusion of the
interview the husband decided he would give himself time to cool off before taking any
definite steps about his marriage. However, it was obvious to the social worker that
this patient's present distress was excessive and was probably rooted in his basic insecurity in the role of husband and father. Although he was a well-built, good-looking
man with a responsible job and a stable work record, he appeared to be quite a dependent
person with rigid standards of behaviour for his marital partner. A previous marriage
had failed because of what he considered was unforgivable conduct on the part of his
wife, and this incident with his present wife seemed to touch off a chain reaction for him.
In the social worker's interview with the wife, she showed much more maturity. She
admitted that she had been at fault in allowing herself to become incapacitated and
took all the blame for their present predicament. However, she recognized that if she
wanted to salvage the marriage, she would have to stand by until her husband had
worked through his feelings about what had happened. Medical treatment for venereal
disease for this husband and wife has not solved their real problem. Only through
sustained casework service might the husband be helped to achieve a more realistic and
adult attitude to marriage. Such help is not available except within the narrow limits
of the family agencies, whose office-hours are such that this man cannot use their services. What is needed is a well-staffed caseworking agency whose focus is on disordered
family relationships and whose office-hours extend into the evening to accommodate
people who are working during the day.
The results of the rating process by the clinic social worker indicate that in 1953-54
almost a third of the patients interviewed needed the support of sustained casework
service to work their way through some of the basic difficulties which they were facing
in their lives. For only a small proportion of this group was there help available in the
community. The main focus of their problem is not venereal disease, and it is therefore inappropriate that casework on a long-term basis should be given at this clinic.
Rather the social worker in this setting should help the person do the initial sorting out
that is necessary before the patient can recognize his problem and move forward to a
referral to a more appropriate agency in the community, k
Respectfully submitted.
(Miss) Edith S. Wyness,
Provincial Supervisor, V.D. Social Service.
I beg to present the annual report of the social workers of the Psychiatric Division
working in the Mental Health Services of the Province of British Columbia for the
fiscal year 1953-54. |
The annual report of the Social Service Departments of the Provincial Mental
Hospital and the Crease Clinic of Psychological Medicine for the fiscal year 1953-54
is herewith submitted for consideration. Such reports have in the past been largely
concerned with a description of the skills, services, and functions which go to make up
the professional social-work job, together with a statistical measure of the services both
quantitatively and to a degree qualitatively. This year's report is largely analytical and
comparative of services, staff situation, Departmental structure, and function. It is,
therefore, largely concerned with a review of the year's activity, review of key events with
some reference to statistics, the staff situation and the case-carrying situation, changes
in the Department's structure and functions, and some indication of the trend to increased services. Goals over the last two years, and the progress in meeting them, have
also been described.       ||||
During the year 1953-54 probably the greatest problem faced by the Social Service
Departments of both the Provincial Mental Hospital and Crease Clinic has been the
unavailability of professionally trained personnel. Because of this fact, it has been
necessary to curtail drastically the services to patients and their relatives and to exercise
the highest degree of selection of patients and relatives for social services. |
At no time during the past three years have the appointments to the Social Service
staff at Provincial Mental Hospital or the Crease Clinic approximated the standards
established by the American Psychiatric Association. According to A.P.A. standards,
one social worker should be available for every eighty patients in care and one social
worker for every sixty patients on discharge. In contrast to these standards, the entire
Social Service Departments of the Provincial Mental Hospital and Crease Clinic have
had, during the past fiscal year, a maximum of five and seven social workers respectively
per department. Vacant established positions remained unfilled from four to ten months
in some instances before replacements could be finalized. This has resulted in a particularly acute staff shortage in the Provincial Mental Hospital, and, as a result, three staff
members have had to move from Crease Clinic to the Provincial Mental Hospital in an
attempt to cover at least a percentage of patients' social-service needs. Due to depleted
staff, workers' case loads became so heavy that on two occasions the intake of new cases
into the Continuing Casework Section had to be closed for a period of two months.
I. Review of the Year's Activity
1. Admission and Brief Services Section, Social Service Departments, Prov
Mental Hospital and Crease Clinic of Psychological Medicine
(a) Crease Clinic.—This section is staffed by three social workers, working out of
offices, situated on strategic wards. It offers brief social service to patients and their
families at the point of the patient's admission to hospital. As part of the admission
team, these workers see newly admitted patients when possible. These interviews are
maintained at a limited level and are sharply focused to the needs of the patient as these
are seen by the worker. Assurance of the interest of the hospital by the admission worker
often facilitates the patient's relationship with other disciplines. Anxiety is relieved by
description and interpretation of Clinic facilities and in many cases by meeting the
patients' specific requests.    This may involve the Meeting of such small requests as
arranging to have articles of clothing brought to the Clinic. :|r
It is during this preliminary period that the admission workers, in co-operation with
the patients' doctors and nurses, attempt to arrive at a clear evaluation of their needs
for continuing casework services. This must be in relation to the availability of social-
work staff in that section. In the Crease Clinic, all admission services must be accelerated because of the short period of hospitalization. It has not been possible to make as
complete an assessment of the patients' needs in this section as in that at the Provincial
Mental Hospital. There have been less brief services to patients. These are being met
whenever possible but only on referral from the doctor.
More emphasis has been placed on screening over the past few months, through
evaluation and assessment at the point of the ward round. There has also been greater
emphasis in bringing social services to the families rather than in using interviews for
fact-finding only.
The staff situation in this section has been such that it has not been possible to
keep up with the referrals from doctors. There is a backlog of brief services, which
indicates a need for more staff if these are to be handled or still greater selectivity if
more staff is not available. At present the admission workers are attempting to gather
as much information as possible concerning the social-service needs of patients and
relatives prior to attendance at ward rounds. This may involve liaison with other
community services, including Social Welfare Branch. Agencies working with discharged patients or the patients themselves frequently get in touch with the Admission
Section. Many calls are also received concerning services available for prospective
Tables I, II, and III are comparative of the work done in the Admission and Brief
Services Section of the Clinic during this fiscal year with the work accomplished in the
previous year. There has been 144.4 per cent increase in direct services to patients and
families. The fact that the admission worker is working more integratively with the
other disciplines is indicated by an increase in this area of 76.1 per cent this year over
that of the previous year. Work with other welfare agencies in the interest of the patient
shows 127.63 per cent increase over the previous year.
(b) Provincial Mental Hospital.—This section was staffed by one social worker,
located on Centre Lawn Building, where all patients are admitted to the Provincial
Mental Hospital. This structuring of an Admission and Brief Services Section makes for
the most effective use of workers' time. An attempt is made to meet the urgency of
requests for social service from a depleted staff through providing a section giving brief
social services. Situated strategically, the admission worker is able to work with other
members of the admission team with facility, and to see the patients and their relatives
at the point of admission. This worker has free access to all wards in the building and
attends weekly ward rounds where all cases of newly admitted patients are discussed by
all the disciplines and treatment plans are formulated. Access to ward records is permitted this worker, as well as ample opportunity to discuss cases with nurses and psychiatrists. This Section acts also as a liaison with families and community agencies as
well as the Continuing Casework Section.
The admission worker takes responsibility for screening the cases of all newly
admitted patients within the first few weeks of their admission, since only a small percentage of patients and their families can be given service due to the exigencies of the
staff situation. The cases which require urgent but limited service are handled by the
admission worker. The more complex situations which will require a more continuous
service are referred to the Continuing Section, when staff is available. Many patients
and their relatives receive no social service. Through brief service at the point of admission, the admission worker frequently enables patients to make use of hospital facilities
and relatives to become part of the " total push " to help the patient deal with his
environment in more positive ways. In one case the patient was extremely hostile to
the hospital staff to the point where she was not able to make use of hospital resources
at all. The admission worker was able to allay her anxieties about the care of her
children through liaison with another agency, and to assist her, through a few brief inter-
views, to accept and mate use of the services of the hospital, including a continuing
worker. In the same way, relatives who through guilt and fear actually impede treatment
plans have been helped to become constructive through brief service. The wife of one
alcoholic patient, who was on the point of separating from her husband, was enabled
express and dissipate many of her negative feelings in the course of three interviews,
that she became a real asset in the patient's rehabilitation. I
The scope and effectiveness of this department have been sharply limited since its
inception by lack of staff, as there has been only one social worker available, with a
parallel shortage of staff in the Continuing Section, where cases needing more extensive
services should be directed. It has never been possible to give direct brief services to
patients on the male side at the time of admission, and many cases urgently needing
service have had to be left. The admission worker, with the supervisor, has had to
become increasingly selective. The inception of this service has made for better screening
and more effective use of the worker's time, with better focused services to patients and
their relatives, but can never make up for a very real and urgent need for more staff.
Tables IV, V, and VI are comparative of the work done this year in the Admission
and Brief Services Section of the Provincial Mental Hospital to the previous year. Direct
casework services to patients show an increase of 54.72 per cent. Consultations regarding the patient's welfare have increased 3.75 per cent. Team conferences concerning
planning for the patient show an increase of 34 per cent.
2. Continuing Casework Services Section, Social Service Department, Provincial Menial
Hospital and Crease Clinic of Psychological Medicine
(a) Crease Clinic.—Only those patients whose situations show marked need, and
who themselves are most able to use intensive casework services within a limited time,
are referred to the Continuing Casework Section. In most instances, better adjustment
to family and community life would be effected if there were more social workers to
provide a continuing contact with patients and families during the hospitalization and
following discharge. Due to the limited staff available, it has never been possible to
establish a section dealing primarily with rehabilitation. Consequently, the responsibly
for obtaining employment and accommodation for patients is, of necessity, assumed by
those social workers whose essential function is the provision of casework services within
the clinical setting. An added difficulty is presented through the fact that resources for
both employment and living accommodation are limited, particularly in the Greater Vancouver area. In spite of excellent co-operation but limited resources within the National
Employment Service, the Continuing Casework Section is still faced with the problem
of seeking employment for patients, especially women whose capabilities are limited
but who, under adequate supervision, can do sufficient work to maintain themselves
financially. In considering accommodation, the fact that there is no central housing or
boarding-home registry in the City of Vancouver leaves the social workers dependent on
such resources as the homes of relatives and friends of the patients when available, newspaper advertisements, and occasional lists of rooms maintained by voluntary organizations. However, none of these resources may be suitable, and it would seem that for
many discharged patients the most effective adjustment could be maintained through*
use of subsidized family care homes under the supervision of the Mental Health Services.
During the past three years the focus of the Social Service Department has changed
from obtaining social information primarily to offering direct services to patientsnn
the ward.    This has been facilitated by the setting-up of the section which deals with
admission and brief service.
In many instances, contact with patients and their families is maintained long after
discharge to community. It is clear that only a limited number of patients can be carried
on such an out-patient basis, since the demands for service to hospitalized patients
continue to increase. The appointment of a part-time social worker for an out-patient
service has not met the need appreciably as office interviews only are possible and interviewing time is limited to three evenings a week.
: There is a marked need for increased family casework services at community level,
especially in the City of Vancouver. Many patients whose emotional difficulties are in
remission on discharge from the Clinic are in urgent need of this type of service.
::jg The following case illustrates intensive casework services given by the Continuing
Casework Section of the Clinic. Services were geared to enabling the patient to accept
the reality of his illness and its effect on his marital situation.
The patient, a 40-year-old married man, had been voluntarily admitted to the
Clinic on two occasions. It was learned from the psychiatrist and through interviews
with both the patient and his wife that he had always had difficulty in interpersonal
relationships, and this would likely continue. It was through the psychiatrist's advice
regarding the patient's inability to sustain close relationships and the fact that the wife
had become incorporated into his delusional trend that it was decided by the psychiatrist
and social worker that separation for this couple would be the most advisable plan.
This was in accordance with the wishes of the patient's wife to terminate their marriage.
On learning from her of her decision to separate, the patient immediately requested discharge. Although he had entered the Clinic voluntarily, he was still acutely disturbed
at that time, and his wife was asked to co-operate in certifying him for further treatment.
Because of marked feelings of guilt, she required considerable interpretation that her
participation in such a treatment plan would be in the best interests of the patient. At
the same time it was necessary to help the patient to accept this fact. His initial feeling
toward his wife was one of hostility, but with understanding and acceptance he was able
to recognize that he was disturbed in his thinking and would benefit from additional
Since the psychiatrist had advised against the wife's visiting the patient, the social
worker acted as liaison between the couple. Close contact was maintained with the
wife to keep her informed of the patient's progress and to support her in carrying out
her plan. Regular interviews with the patient on the ward enabled him to express his
feelings about his marriage and helped him to accept the reality of his wife's decision to
separate. He required constant reassurance that the Clinic staff was interested in him
and would help him in making post-discharge plans.
Following intensive casework services over a period of twelve weeks, the patient
was able to recognize the inadequacies of his marriage and to accept separation as being
in the best interests of both himself and his wife. He was helped to understand that the
latter was still interested in him as an individual and concerned about his welfare.
Although at the time of discharge the patient occasionally became upset, both he
and his wife were able to discuss their marriage realistically, and did not seem to hold
the degree of hostility and stress that is often seen in such situations. The wife's feelings
of guilt were considerably relieved through her relationship with the social worker.
Continued contact was maintained with the patient in order to help him become settled
in employment and to plan for activities which would replace his former home-life.
Casework services were also given the wife until such time as a separation agreement
was drawn up and property settlements completed.
Both the patient and his wife appeared to have reached a decision which was most
beneficial to them both, and in future should be able to meet and see each other occasionally without difficulty.
Tables VII, VIII, IX, and X are comparative of the work done in the Continuing
Casework Services Section of the Crease Clinic for this fiscal year with that accomplished
in the previous fiscal year. Altogether, 1,478 patients and their families were given
service through 4,071 face-to-face interviews. Table IX indicates an increase in the
numbers of interviews with and conferences regarding patients over the previous fiscal
year. However, Table X, which shows the activity per patient, reveals that there was a
decline in casework interviews per case from 4.9 in 1952-53 to 2.7 in 1953-54, and
in consultations with other disciplines from 2.9 in 1952-53 to 2.2 in 1953-54. '^
is due to the fact that a greater number of patients (1,478) were given service in this
fiscal year than in 1952-53 (1,100 patients). Increased work has been done toward
employment placement of patients during this fiscal year.
(b) Provincial Mental Hospital.—The goal for social services in the Mental Hospital
over the last two years has been the development of casework services to patients and
relatives in each stage of the patient's hospitalization. The pressure for social services
on admission, in treatment within the Hospital and in pre-convalescence and convalescence, has been constant from doctors, patients, and families. Although social casework
services are already well established on the wards and are an important part of patient
treatment, these services have had to be limited at the Provincial Mental Hospital over
the last year. This has been necessary since staff shortages have been felt and priority
has been given to a greater source of pressure—that is, a demand for rehabilitative services. During the past year approximately 60 per cent of continuing services given were
either of a pre-convalescent or convalescent nature. Increased staff would allow for
better-developed casework services on the wards, thereby adding significantly to the
recovery of a larger number of patients.
A high degree of skill is necessary for working with an emotionally disturbed individual, and the policy of asking for a basic minimum of training in social work would
seem to be well justified. The fact that the salaries paid for these positions are less than
those offered by other Provinces makes it difficult to hold or attract staff. A direct
result of the decrease in staff over the last fiscal year has been a decrease in the number
of cases accepted for service due to greater selectivity, with an attempt to give service
where it could be used most effectively. Early in 1954 it was necessary to redistribute
case loads so that, with only four social workers on staff, one was assigned to each of
the three main hospital units and one to the rehabilitation ward for women patients. This
tended to relieve the pressure of having to give service to patients over the whole institution, and to limit social workers' contacts to doctors and nursing staff in a smaller
geographic area. An estimation of immediate needs for services indicates that at least
five social workers for each of the three buildings would be necessary in this coming
year in order to provide service where it is most needed.
In the greater concentration on rehabilitative service, a greater need for community
resources has been indicated. In order to help to meet this, the staff has organized a
committee on community resources in an attempt to explore and classify agencies and
organizations to aid in the rehabilitation of the patient. In this connection a direct
contact has been made with the Director of the Provincial Welfare Institutions so that
boarding- and nursing-home accommodation may be more effectively used, together
with considerable contact with the information service of the Community Chest. The
committee also has worked extensively on the classification of recreational and group-
work agencies in the community. if
There has been some demand for service over the last year from patients who were
discharged in full from hospital. This has appeared in contacts initiated by patients
themselves or by other social agencies. It has been necessary to limit this kind of service
sharply, except in situations of extreme emergency.
Tables XI, XII, XIII, and XIV describe statistically the casework services rendered
to patients and families in this section. It is noteworthy that although there was a
decrease in face-to-face services to patients, consultations regarding the patients' welfare
increased. Increased activity in work with community welfare agencies and employment
services has been outstanding. The decreases in direct services to patients reflect the
shortages of staff over the fiscal year. There has been an increase in the numbers of
patients given service from 607 in 1952-53 to 952 in 1953-54 (Table XIII). This has
resulted in more extensive but less intensive social services. V
Case Example—Continuing Casework Services Section, Provincial Mental Hospital
Referral and Problem Presented.—This case was opened on the patient's request by
letters to Social Service asking help in making plans for her discharge from hospital.
A friend was interested in helping her with her adjustment outside.
Background Information.—The patient was a 54-year-old single woman of English
origin. She was a small, rather neat-appearing woman with greying hair. She was simple
and childish in her manner but friendly and co-operative on the ward and worked well in
the kitchen. She had always been very backward, dependent on her family, and had had
practically no schooling or work experience. She came to Canada from England at the
age of 12 and attended school to age of 15, attaining Grade V standing. She had lived
at home with her parents, and after their deaths lived with her brother until the age of 35,
when she obtained a housekeeping position in Vancouver. She could not hold a job for
more than a few weeks at a time and was troubled with asthma, for which she attended
out-patients' clinic. She finally applied for relief and moved from one boarding home to
another, becoming quite deteriorated. She was committed to the Provincial Mental Home
at the age of 36. Psychological evaluation indicated that she was feeble-minded. The
patient's behaviour in hospital had been childish but co-operative, aside from hoarding
and several attempts at escape. Her health had been fair, aside from recurrent bouts of
asthma.   Her doctor felt she might make an adjustment in a supervised boarding home.
Services Given.—The patient's friend was interviewed and assessed as a resource in
rehabilitation. She could not offer living accommodation but was willing to co-operate
in a friendly supportive contact after discharge and to sign probation papers.
Through the facilities of Vancouver City social service, boarding-home care and
social assistance were arranged. The patient was then discharged on probation to her
friend. Since her discharge, a regular contact has been maintained, which the patient
has used in an emotionally supporting way. She has made a satisfactory adjustment in
the boarding home and has enjoyed community activities with her friend.
3. Social Group Work Services
A new experiment in social work with groups in the Hospital and Clinic was inaugurated in mid-February, 1954, with the appointment of a social group worker to the Social
Service staff. In order to establish such an aspect of service, it was necessary to assess
the various areas of need already evident to Hospital authorities, and to select for immediate service that group of patients with which a pilot project might best be launched.
The need of younger patients for closer contact with others of their own age range was
clear. A nucleus of ten to twelve adolescent boys and girls had already been formed,
and had commenced bi-weekly social meetings under the direct leadership of a senior
psychiatrist. Choice of the teen-aged group was therefore obvious. Ten sessions of this
group had been held by the time the group worker was ready to move into a co-leadership
role on March 9th. By the end of the month, arrangements had been made for the group
worker to assume full responsibility for the one session per week while the doctor and
worker took joint responsibility for the remaining weekly meeting.
The group worker's aims for this programme were:—
(a) To support the healthy aspects of the members' personalities through
providing opportunity to take part, as a group, in the normal activities of
(b) To assist members to make closer, more meaningful relationships win
their peers. | |
(c) To provide opportunities for self-expression and physical, intellectual, and
emotional growth through joint participation in planning and carrying
through programmes in line with the members' capacities and in keepin
with the total treatment plan for each individual.
During March a number of major problems in following through these aims became
(a) Facilities for this type of programme were largely inadequate or
(b) Resources and equipment were difficult to obtain.
(c) The wide variations in degree and type of mental illness represented in
the group made the development of mutually satisfying programme activities difficult in the extreme, and precluded any thought of rapid development of group self-direction. This further suggested a need to reassess
criteria for selection of members. 1|
(d) Because Clinic patients are short-term patients, the necessity for develop-
ing a semi-permanent nucleus from among Hospital patients quickly
became apparent. I
Despite these findings, temporarily negative findings of the first month, some equally
clear-cut positive findings emerged. The group sessions were meeting fundamental association needs. A number of quite harmonious relationship patterns were developing
between members; members attended regularly, often arriving early, and their generally
negative attitudes to hospital, doctor, worker, and programme were slowly undergoing
change, and their feelings toward one another were subtly warmer and more accepting,
Although participation in programme activities remained sporadic and haphazard, members enjoyed greater freedom to express themselves in simple games, hikes, etc., and
were more relaxed as a result. I
The teen-aged programme is only one of a large number of possible areas in which
the social group-work method may be employed with profit. Despite the fact that teenagers have particular social as well as psychiatric problems related to growing into mature
adults, they are not alone in there need for help in learning to make and keep friends,
The problems of loneliness and inability to give and take with others are common human
problems, by no means exclusive to the mentally ill, yet particularly pronounced in
a mental hospital. Complete withdrawal from other human beings is only an exaggeration of the | shy " boy or girl. It is to prevent such withdrawal and to encourage fuller,
warmer human contact between patients that the social group-work programme is
primarily designed. It can be used to advantage with such groups as alcoholics, new
Canadians, parents of patients, and out-patient groups, and many others. Development
of the enormous potential of such a programme rests, however, on development of harmonious teamwork between clinical disciplines, refinement of social group-work techniques and skills, and research into new knowledge acquired in other centres. If *
programme is to be expanded into these and other areas where its contribution may be
significant, additional trained personnel will be urgently required in the near future.
II. Goals
Although the goal has been to increase the time spent individually with patient8 at
every level of their treatment, accelerated demands for social services have resulted in
J 117
an increase in the numbers of patients given service with a resultant spreading of social
services. There has been a limited staff to deal with this even on a basic minimal level.
In the Provincial Mental Hospital, only 482 patients of 1,220 admitted during the fiscal
year were extended brief social services. Only 952 patients in long-term treatment and
convalescence were given social services out of a group of 3,900 patients resident in the
Hospital. -ft
In the Clinic, only 733 patients out of a total of 1,270 admitted during the fiscal
year were helped by a social worker at the point of admission. However, some 1,478
patients, comprised of 331 patients from the previous fiscal year's treatment group and
1,147 from this fiscal year, were helped during the periods of treatment and convalescence.
Increased demands for social services are being met from every unit of the Mental
Health Services. There have been many requests from the Homes for the Aged, where
it has not been possible to give service at all. An urgent need has also been demonstrated
in the area of family casework for patients discharged in full from the Crease Clinic.
The Social Service Departments have been the recipients of much understanding,
co-operation, and support from all disciplines, both in the Hospital and the Clinic. This
they gratefully acknowledge.
Table I.—Summary of Cases Given Services by Admission and Brief Services Section,
Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Cases brought forward from previous fiscal year	
New cases	
Cases reopened during fiscal year .	
Cases reopened from previous fiscal year	
Total intake into Admission and Brief Services case load	
Total cases given service in Admission and Brief Services	
Cases closed or referred	
Cases carried over in Admission and Brief Services Section
Table II.—Summary of Casework Activity on Cases carried by Admission and Brief
Services Section, Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st, 1953, to
March 31st, 1954.
Increase in
Fiscal Year
Total casework interviews with and regarding patients.	
Total casework interviews with patients	
Total casework interviews with relatives	
Total number of conferences and consultations concerning patients
Team conferences (ward rounds)	
Consultations with other disciplines	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
Periods of casework supervision (hours)	
Per Cent
Table HI.—Changing Extent of Casework Activity in Admission and Brief Services Section, Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Extent per Case
Casework interviews with and regarding patients
Consultations with other disciplines \	
Team conferences at ward rounds	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
 J 118
Table IV.—Summary of Cases Given Services by Admission and Brief Services Section
Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st, 1953, to fatf
31st, 1954.
New cases
Cases reopened during fiscal year-
Cases reopened from previous fiscal year.
Cases transferred in from other services.
Total intake into Admission and Brief Services case load	
Total cases given service in Admission and Brief Services Section case load	
Cases closed or referred .	
Cases carried over to next fiscal year in Admission and Brief Services Section.
Table V.—Summary of Casework Activity on Cases Carried by Admission and Brkt
Services Section, Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st
1953, to March 31st, 1954.
Total casework interviews with and regarding patients	
Total casework interviews with patients	
Total casework interviews with relatives	
Total number of conferences and consultations concerning patients
Team conferences (ward rounds)	
Consultations with other disciplines .	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
Periods of casework supervision (hours)	
Increase in
Fiscal Year
Per Cent
Table VI.—Changing Extent of Casework Activity in Admission and Brief Service
Section, Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st, 1953}tt)
March 31st, 1954.
Extent per Case
Casework interviews with and regarding patients	
Consultations regarding patients with other disciplines	
Team conferences at ward rounds	
Consultations regarding patients with other welfare agencies
Table VII.—Summary of Cases Given Service by the Continuing Casework Seme®
Section, Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st, 1953, to March M
During Period of
During Period °f
Cases brought forward from previous fiscal year.
New cases	
Total intake into case load	
Cases closed or referred	
Cases carried over	
Total cases given service (treatment and convalescence)"
J 119
Table VIII.—Summary of Casework Activity, Continuing Casework Services Section,
Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Daring Period of
During Period of
Total casework interviews with and regarding patients .	
Total casework interviews with patient.	
Total casework interviews with family	
Total number of conferences and consultations concerning patients
Consultations with other disciplines \	
Consultations with supervisor of Vista Rehabilitation Centre	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
Consultations with employment agencies	
Table IX.—Comparative Summary of Casework Activity on Cases Carried by Continuing
Casework Services Section, Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st,
1953, to March 31st, 1954. '.§-
Increase in
Fiscal Year
Total interviews with and regarding patients	
Total number of conferences and consultations concerning patients.
Consultations with other disciplines	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
Consultations with supervisor of Vista Rehabilitation Centre	
Total number of patients given service	
Periods of supervision (hours)	
Per Cent
Table X.—Changing Extent of Casework Activity in the Continuing Casework Services
Section, Social Service Department, Crease Clinic, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st,
Extent per Case
Casework interviews with and regarding patients	
Consultations regarding patients with other disciplines	
Consultations with other welfare agencies in the interest of patients
Table XI.—Summary of Cases Given Service by Continuing Casework Services Section,
Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st, 1953, to March
31st, 1954. #| '§
During Period of
During Period of
Cases brought forward from previous fiscal year	
New cases	
Total intake into case load	
Cases closed or referred	
Cases carried over	
Total cases given service (treatment and convalescence)
 J 120
Table XII.—Summary of Casework Activity, Continuing Casework Services Section
Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st, 1953, to Mori
31st, 1954.
During Period of
During Period 0(
Total casework interviews with and regarding patients
Total casework interviews with patient-
Total casework interviews with family
Total number of conferences and consultations concerning patients.
Consultations with other disciplines	
Consultations with employment agencies	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
Consultations with supervisor of Vista Rehabilitation Centre——
Table XIII.—Comparative Summary of Casework Activity, Continuing Casework Services Section, Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st,
1953, to March 31st, 1954.
Increase in
Fiscal Year
Total interviews with and regarding patients	
Total number of conferences and consultations concerning patients.
Consultations with Other disciplines.	
Consultations with other welfare agencies-
Consultations with supervisor of Vista Rehabilitation Centre.
Total number of patients given service	
Periods of supervision (hours)	
Per Cent
Table XIV.—Changing Extent of Casework Activity in Continuing Casework Servim
Section, Social Service Department, Provincial Mental Hospital, April 1st, 1951 to
March 31st, 1954.
Extent per Case
Casework interviews with and regarding patients.
Consultations with other disciplines	
Consultations with other welfare agencies	
The annual report of the Social Service Department of The Woodlands School fa
the past fiscal year is herewith submitted for consideration. The annual reports submitted
by this Department have been largely concerned in the past with descriptive and statistical
interpretation of the contribution and function of social work both in regard to the needs
of residents in a training-school and to the functions of administration, and planning ot
services in an institution geared to long-term custodial care as well as education, training,
and rehabilitation of the mentally retarded individual. ,
This year's annual report takes on a new emphasis—one comparatively critical m
analytic of the social services available to the pupils, to school administration, to community health and welfare groups, and to citizens interested in the advancement at
mentally retarded person.   The report, therefore, is concerned largely with:-
LA review of the year's social-work activity, the staff situation, the case situa-
||    tion, and changes in the Department's structure and functions.
II. Goals over the past two and one-half years, with some indication of the
progress made in attaining them.
I. Review of the Year's Social-work Activity
Perusal of Table XV shows that 560 pupil-patients were given social services, comprised largely of face-to-face helping interviews to pupils already resident in the School.
These interviews were concerned with helping pupils with problems of adjustment to
the training and educational programme offered by the School, with problems related
to the reawakening and stimulation of parents' and relatives' interest in the pupils, and
in the positive and progressive programme operating in the School, as well as with
problems related to adequate stimulation of pupils attitudinally and socially preparatory
to social and vocational rehabilitation. Interviews have, in other instances, been concerned with helping rehabilitees adjust to the demands of the job in the working home, as
the success of placements depends on attitudes, ability to establish and maintain satisfactory social and work relationships, and ability to produce steadily while on the job
in accordance with their potential in ability and strength. In yet other instances, social
services have been directed toward helping the rehabilitees with personal problems.
The mentally retarded have many of the same personal problems as others. They need
help in the choice of friends, in working out family problems, in sorting out boy and girl
relationships, and in using their spare time wisely. To meet the latter need, the social
worker helps the mentally retarded rehabilitee make use of community groups or agencies
which have leisure-time programmes of a character-building nature. Casework help
given to the mentally retarded rehabilitee who has a personal problem is no different from
that given to or needed by the intellectually average or superior person with similar
Table XVI shows that 2,811 helping interviews were undertaken regarding the
welfare of pupils. Of this number, 502 were concerned with parents and relatives
contemplating the use of the School's services for a mentally retarded family member,
310 were concerned with parents when pupils were being admitted to the School for the
first time, 1,180 interviews of a helping nature were given to the pupils resident in the
School, and 819 interviews were given to the thirteen adults rehabilitated to community
during this fiscal year.
Table XVI further indicates that in helping the 560 pupils known to social service
during the fiscal year, this Department, working together in a 1 total push " relationship
with other disciplines and community agencies, gave 3,081 consultations directed toward
the pupils' psychological, physical, educational, vocational, and social treatment or
evaluation. The largest number of these consultations were held with doctors, nurses,
school-teachers, and recreational, speech, and industrial therapists, and all the many
training sections within the School programme proper. The assistance, understanding,
support, and encouragement of all the aforementioned disciplines have made for more
valuable and more extensive social services to the pupils.
Table XVII indicates some change in the focus of casework activity in the Social
Service Department. The activity of this Department became associated more clearly
with direct casework services to residents and rehabilitees than with those supporting and
information-getting services associated with inquiries concerning the use of School services
and reception of pupils. The value of a training-school programme is directly related
to the extent of individual therapeutic work available to the individual resident. The
Social Service Department has had the reassurance that, over the fiscal year, its direct
case work services to residents has increased 140 per cent, while its direct help to
rehabilitees has increased 97 per cent.
Table XVIII further points to the increased individualization of the pupils' needs
Casework services on the individual case   team consultations   and
consultations all show a marked increase this year over the fiscal year 1952-53.
Although there is much that is reassuring and heartening in the analysis of this
year's social-service activity, there is also much that is of d^p concern. A comparative
review of social-work activity as measured in Tables XV to XVIII with the activity in the
fiscal year 1952-53 reflects a levelling-off at a point where social services cannot be
increased greatly with the present staff and facilities. The Social Service staff must be
increased if the Department is to meet the individual needs of some 1,200 residents and
their families. Most of these patients come from the Greater Vancouver area and thus
are wholly dependent on the present Social Service staff of three social workers for social
services at pre-admission, reception, during the period of residential education and
training, and for services during rehabilitation. Much community interpretation is necessary in the area of rehabilitation. At no time during the fiscal year was the staff at
the full complement of its establishment of four social workers. A minimum standard
adequate for staffing a social service department in this specific setting would necessitate
the appointment of two additional caseworkers and a casework supervisor.     f
Much of what has been accomplished by the social workers this year has been due
to a careful direction to those pupils who are more able to use available services, to a more
adequate definition of the kind and extent of service which the social worker can give,
and, finally, to a more efficient structuring of the Social Service Department. Through
the latter a more economical and efficient use of the limited staff has been made possible,
At present the Social Service Department of The Woodlands School operates in
two sections—the one concerned with social services at the point of admission, reception,
and during the period of school training; the other concerned with social services focused
on preparation for rehabilitation, rehabilitation proper, and follow-up.
The following case examples indicate the help being extended to pupils at the various
service levels:—
1. Pre-admission and Reception.—Lucy, SVi years old, was admitted to The Woodlands School in February, 1953. Muscular control and speech were affected due to birth
injury. Although at this time Lucy's mental ability is difficult to assess accurately, she
is interested in the things that go on around her and she presents altogether the picture
of a happy, relatively well socialized child. Casework services were focused on helping
the parents with their anxiety, sorrow, and uncertainty about placing Lucy in the training-
school. This successful helping process involved consultation with and the co-operation
of the medical and nursing staffs.
The parents were referred to the School by a medical social worker in the Children's
Hospital, where they had inquired about resources for the care of retarded children.
The Social Service Department maintained contact with the parents for a year before
they were able to accept the services which the School offered. During this time they
were helped to recognize the difficulties which Lucy's presence in the home created for
her, themselves, and her brothers and sisters. Lucy's demands as a cerebral palsied child
had brought the mother to the verge of physical exhaustion, and, in addition, were creating
emotional and behaviour problems in her three brothers and sisters, as well as physical
and emotional neglect. The social worker's acceptance of the parents' feelings of uncertainty about admission and her help in their orientation to the School's services finally
enabled them to reach a decision to admit their child to the School.
Eleven months later the parents returned to the School for further information. *
parents'numerous and detailed questions were answered as fully as possible by the ScW
staff. The parents, though still ambivalent, shortly thereafter reached a mutual decision
that admission was the most sensible plan at this time. T,
The admission and early weeks of placement were difficult for the parents. ^
mother s relief was negated by her anxiety and feeling that she had rejected Lucy
failed as a mother in placing her. With the hdp of the social worker, medical and nursing
staff, the parents were helped with their concern, so that the anxiety they felt has gradually
decreased until they are now well pleased with Lucy's adjustment and progress. Lucy's
condition has not changed markedly over her year in the School, but the parents now see
her placement and their responsibility to her in a more positive way. The family unit
has been strengthened, as they have become more able to share the burden of their
feelings and responsibility with the School staff.
Such careful work pays dividends in preventing psychological and physical breakdown of family life. It pays further dividends in that it holds the interest of the parents
and other family members in the child placed. In this way, parents are freed from crippling emotional feelings, so that they are able to take an active interest in the child's care
or education if the latter is feasible. In this way also, they are enabled to make a more
positive contribution to the costs of this care and training. One of the most distressing
aspects in institutional care of both children and adults is the large number of families
who, through discouragement, misunderstanding, and shame, cease to fulfil their responsibilities in the treatment and care of their hospitalized relative.
2. Casework Services to* the Mentally Retarded during the Period of Education and
Training.—Jean, an attractive 18-year-old adolescent, has been seen regularly for casework interviews during the last six months. She was admitted five years ago because of
uncontrolled epileptic seizures, as well as an emotional disturbance exhibited in delinquent
behaviour, ft This behaviour appeared to be due to family disintegration following the
death of the father, who was the strength of the family. The mother, who was inadequate
and unstable, began to drift, with the result that, despite a real affection for her children,
she neglected them. All have been emotionally damaged by the experiences, and Jean's
mixed feelings toward her mother have caused her much distress, for, despite all the
difficulties, family ties are close.
Jean was admitted to the School as a protective measure. During her residence,
her personality problems and emotional instability have led to many stormy periods.
Her self-esteem and socialization sank to such a low level that she was a real problem to
herself and the staff. Through the interested efforts of the nurses, psychologist, and
doctors, Jean was motivated toward self-improvement. When Social Service entered the
scene, Jean was engaged in a full programme of activities and her seizures were well under
control. Personality and behavour difficulties, however, kept her in constant trouble
with staff and pupils and interfered with her ability to concentrate on academic and training work. Possessed of a natural charm, she did not know how to make friends or win
approval and was, as a result, an essentially lonely girl.
A thorough psychological assessment indicated that Jean had a potential for normal
functioning both intellectually and emotionally. r^
Casework services were focused on helping Jean to acquire socially acceptable
behaviour and attitudes, such as control of emotional outbursts, tolerance of frustration,
and ways of meeting the daily problems of living. Jean has come to see the staff as people
concerned for her welfare, working with her toward the goal of rehabilitation. Through
sharing treatment plans and focus, Social Service, School, and nursing personnel are
meeting her needs more effectively. More hopeful indications of a growing maturity are
beginning to be observed in this disturbed adolescent girl who feels within herself increasing confidence, satisfaction, and self-esteem.
Careful work of this type pays large dividends in the establishment of self-direction
toward self-maintenance in employment.
3. Rehabilitation and Follow-up Services.—Betty, born May 19th, 1904, was
admitted at the age of 18 years. She had been rejected by both father and stepmother,
deprived of school and social outlets, and, as a result, she was distrustful of others, wayward, and emotional.    Social service was extended one year before rehabilitation was
planned.   The goal of these interviews was to help Betty gain some awareness of
meaning of her behaviour and its effects both on herself and in her relationships with
The social worker found that although she is of moron level of intelligence, she was
able to respond to the encouragement of the doctor, nurses, and social worker.
A job as ward maid was obtained for her in a private hospital in a country district
At first the isolation of this job bothered her. There were very few community outlets
suitable to an adult of Betty's intelligence. However, the hospital staff were tolerant and
helpful as they grew in understanding with the help of the social worker. Betty was
successful in her job and kindly to the elderly people in care, but in spite of her feeling
of success she needed constant emotional supportive help from the social worker, which
was given through bi-weekly visits, during which difficulties and successes were talked
over. During these sessions Betty learned to use the telephone, open a bank account,
make out a cheque, post a letter, and make change. She also developed a taste for
useful and becoming clothes.
Betty is now on her fifth month of probation and has earned $45 monthly. She is
proud of her $90 savings account and looks to the future with less and less anxiety because
she is beginning to know that she has worth and value as a person and an earner.
Betty is one of the thirteen adults who have been placed in jobs during the fiscal year,
II. Goals over the Past Two and One-half Years and an Indication of
Progress in Attaining Them
The goal has been to reach as many mentally retarded pupils and their relatives as
possible in the extension of social services. From the beginning this extension of services
was seen to cover the social-service needs of relatives coming at pre-admission either to
inquire about the School facilities or to make application for admission; of pupils being
received into the School, as well as those of the relative; of pupil and relative personally,
individually, and during the period of education and training, as well as the needs of the
rehabilitee. How extensive has it been possible to make these social services and yet meet
the real and urgent needs of the individual pupil and relative? Only 20 per cent of tie
need for social services can be met at this time, due to shortage and unavailability of
trained social-work staff. Some conception of the degree to which the present social
services are meeting the needs of the individual may be obtained by a study of Table
XVIII. Only 5.02 interviews per individual were possible. There are grave limitations
to the effectiveness of so small a number of interviews in the mobilization of the pupil to
the School programme and in help extended to the parents who are often anxious and
Yet another goal has been to develop a pupil-centred social service rather than a
purely information-getting one. Tables XVII and XVIII would point to a beginning of
this aim (140.33 per cent increase in face-to-face interviews with pupils and 97.35 per
cent increase in work with rehabilitees). f w
Two grave concerns have occupied the Social Service Department over the past two
and one-half years: How should the demand for more and more improved continuing
casework services to patients and relatives during the School period and rehabilitation be
met?   What is the best use of social services to meet the needs of the pupil and the Scho
programme as they exist in the Social Service Department and community? Much
and research is yet to be done toward the clarification of these questions. It is a»!
clear, however, that the gearing of the School to early assessment of the rehabilitate
potential of the pupils is necessary, and that continuing assessment of the pupils directe
to formulation and reformulation of educational and vocational potentialities should 0
undertaken through the team approach. With the establishment of such evaluative pj
cesses within the School, sounder planning would be possible, and, as a result, the^
J 125
services of the School as well as casework services would be given more effectively and
efficiently. ||
From the statistics it is possible to project " an average social worker," and in thus
doing describe the work being undertaken in the Social Service Department. This average
worker carried 108 cases during the year. In a typical month his case load would comprise 40 cases, indicating that he was responsible for 40 children and 68 relatives.
A small percentage of the 40 children and their relatives received frequently scheduled
interviews. The 13 rehabilitees and their employers received bi-weekly interviews. This
average worker also spent one and one-half days weekly in pre-admission and reception
duties. These involved him in social study, casework help, team consultations, and full
clinic review. Besides this, he was in contact with other community health and welfare
agencies, interested individuals, general and children's hospitals, and he handled referrals
for service, applications to the School, and inquiries as they came in by mail, telephone,
or visit. He dealt with 63 pre-admission services to parents and extended 251 interviews,
consulted 81 times with other staff members, 64 times with other agencies during the year.
During reception, 152 interviews were given parents and pupils; 150 consultations
with other staff; and 18 with other agencies were undertaken by this "average worker"
at this time. During the School period he was in contact with 187 pupils and parents, in
all giving 392 interviews; he had 402 consultations with staff and 22 with agencies. He
attended 146 clinics, oriented 5 professional groups educatively and interpretively, and
addressed 11 interested community groups.
Equipment to improve social services is still a necessity. Although the Social
Service Department greatly appreciates the basic accommodation and equipment needs
already provided, there is an urgent need for play equipment to be used in play interviewing and equipment to provide for the group needs of selected children. The need of
a midway home for the prospective rehabilitee still is urgent, as well as the provision of
funds for rehabilitation within the Mental Health Services.
The support, co-operation, and understanding of all School departments have been
felt by this " average social worker " and profoundly appreciated.
Table No. XV.—Summary of Cases Given Services by the Social Service Department,
The Woodlands School, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Cases brought forward from previous fiscal year
New ,.	
R. 1	
R. 2	
Total intake into the case load	
Total number of cases given services3	
Cases closed or referred .	
Cases carried over	
1 Includes 126 pre-admission.
2 Includes 132 pre-admission.
3 Of this total, 126 cases were given service before admission, leaving a total of 560 cases which were puptt-patients
actually in residence at the School.
J 126
Table XVI.—Summary of the Social Work and Casework Activity in the Social Servk
Department, The Woodlands School, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Total casework interviews with or
regarding pupils and patients1	
Total casework interviews with
pupils and patients	
Total casework interviews with
Total consultations regarding pupils
and patients2	
Consultations with other disciplines^.
Consultations with other agencies	
Consultations with employers	
1 Grand totals of interviews:  1953-54, 2,811;  1952-53, 1,699.
2 Grand totals of consultations:  1953-54, 3,081; 1952-53, 1,623.
Periods of individual and group supervision:   1953-54, 158;  1952-53, 62.
Professional education:  1953-54, 15 groups;  1952-53, 16 groups.
Community education:  1953-54, 33 groups;  1952-53, 4 groups.
Team conferences (noon-hour clinics):  1953-54, 495;  1952-53, 242.
Table XVII.—Changing Focus of Casework Activity in the Social Service Department,
The Woodlands School, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Increase in
Fiscal Year
School admission and reception casework services	
School continuing casework services during training and education period.
School casework services during rehabilitation	
Per Cent
Table XVIII.—Changing Extent of Casework Activity in Cases Carried by Social Service
Department, The Woodlands School, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Extent per Case
Casework interviews with and regarding pupils and patients	
Conferences and consultations with other disciplines	
Consultations with other welfare and health agencies re rehabilitation
Supervision periods per social worker	
The year 1953-54 has been one in which there has been a reasonably stable stal
situation in the Social Service Department of the Child Guidance Clinics. There to*
been a number of vacancies, for which replacements have been made, but for most"
the year the staff has been up to the full complement of fifteen, one of whom is»
a part-time basis. Intake to the Clinic for direct services has maintained a high W
but its trend for the past six or seven years to increase yearly appears to be ending. V
pressure of making services available as quickly and effectively as possible has therefore
not enlarged.    One step which has been completed during this year to facilitate thepro-
vision of services is the establishment of the Intake and Brief Services Section, which has
enabled Social Service to bring parents and children more quickly into touch with the
Clinic and to establish an earlier evaluation, diagnosis, and plan of treatment in conjunction with other team members. This does not avoid a waiting period which is still necessary for those who can benefit from continuing casework services, but it does permit
better planning, referral, and brief services subsequent to the initial application. The
waiting period for those needing continuing casework help, which may extend to more
than six months, can only be alleviated by a larger staff and more office space.
In the Victoria clinic an increasing intake is still in evidence. A third social worker
was added to that staff early in the year and was much needed to handle the influx of
cases resulting from the full team services which have been developed there in the last
several years.
The statistics which follow this report show the growth which has taken place in
Victoria in the last year. Such a comparison of intake and case-load totals, however,
is not entirely valid for the Vancouver clinic, since these totals for the last year were too
low because of omissions resulting from changes in intake method.f|This omission was
noted in the last year's report and was corrected in this year's statistics. The apparent
increases in Vancouver are therefore not as great as the table shows. It has not been
possible to make corrections for compartive purposes, but a general comparison of
case loads makes it evident that case counts were more similar and increases relatively
small. A small reduction in total number of interviews is shown by the statistics, and
this also seems to reflect a levelling-off at a point where services cannot be increased
greatly with present staff and facilities.
A review of developments in social services over the past few years would seem to be
worth while at this time, and for this purpose 1950-51 figures have been included in
Tables XIX and XX so that reference will be made particularly to this three-year period.
During these three years and also the three previous years th&re was a great deal of
emphasis given to provision of more direct services to parents and children. This was
related to heavy demands from the community, and additional staff made it possible to
develop this aspect of our work. For example, a comparison of casework interviews
with those of five years ago indicates an increase of 600 per cent, while staff approximately tripled. In the last three years, casework interviews have more than doubled
(Table XX). The fact that emphasis has been on increasing services to the individual
client is clearly shown by the fact that while interviews were doubled in the three-year
period, the increase in total cases carried for direct services was 60 per cent.
It will be noted that although there has been a steady increase in cases carried for
direct services, the over-all total, when services to other agencies is included, has not
shown this increase and, in fact, has decreased. Since cases seen on a travelling clinic
have increased 30 per cent over the three-year period, the decrease in number is found
in the large group of cases examined in the Vancouver area as a service to health and
welfare agencies. It is noted that such cases account for a relatively small proportion of
the social worker's time, although this is not so with respect to other team members. The
increases, therefore, have been in those areas of Clinic service which entail considerable
casework help to parents and children.
Along with the need and goal of meeting the pressure for more and improved continuing casework services which has taken the attention of the Social Service Department,
there is also the consideration of what constitutes the best use of these services and those
of other resources in the community. This has been given attention in the past, and it
would seem to be an area for further thought at this time. Sound planning in individual
cases is necessary if casework services are to be given in the most efficient and effective
way, and if effort is to be concentrated most in those areas where they are most productive
and helpful. The use of pre-clinic team conferences and the Intake and Brief Services
Section has facilitated a more concerted planning of help in the individual case.
 J 128
From the statistics it is possible to project an g average worker " whose descriptk
may help to describe the work of the social-work staff. This average worker carried about
48 cases during the year for direct casework services. In a typical month his case load
would be 21, and this means that he was responsible for services to 29 parents and20
children. Many of these involved regular weekly interviews with parents and older
children and play interviews with younger children. In addition, he spent approximately
one day a week | on duty," which entailed services such as participating in diagnostic
and consultative services to the clients and staff of health and welfare agencies, handling
referrals and applications for service as they come in by telephone, mail, or personal visit,
and dealing with various requests or questions which are part of the close work of a clinic
with the community which it serves. On approximately seven occasions during the year
he participated in community education or organizational activities, such as speaking
to community groups on mental-health topics and interpreting Clinic functions, taking
part in professional training programmes, or representing the Clinic on groups concerned
with social welfare problems. On approximately sixty occasions he took part in staf
meetings or staff committees, some of which met out of working-hours, the aim of whick
was the development of professional skill or the better integration and organization of
On fifty-two occasions during the year this average worker met with all team members together to share information and plan jointly the services to be given to child and
parent. On thirty-four occasions he met with other staff members to discuss progress
and plans in individual cases. On thirty-six occasions he met with his supervisor for
consultation about his work.
The accommodation of the present Clinic building is certainly taxed beyond satisfactory limits, and this clearly results in some inefficiency and inflexibility in the social-
service programme. It is hoped that the projected new Clinic can be completed at ai
early date to improve this situation. The adult out-patients' service which is planned is
also an important project from the point of view of social service here, since there is
a tendency for casework services to be offered from this Clinic when there is actually need
for referral to Psychiatric Out-patient Services.
Equipment to improve casework services has been increased over recent years,
and this has helped to meet the needs of parents and children. There is, for example,
a much-improved selection of essential materials for work with children. The availability
of new dictating equipment has been most helpful, as has been the improved telephone
system. Cars have always been an essential part of equipment for the Social Service
Department, since home visits are frequently of value and close collaboration with am1
effective use of various community resources is most important.
Table XIX.—Summary of Cases Given Services by Social Service Department,
April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Cases brought forward from previous fiscal year-
New cases	
Cases reopened during year	
Cases reopened from previous year	
Total intake into case load	
Total cases carried in case load	
Cases closed or referred	
Cases carried over .
Agency brief services given (including travelling
clinics )	
Total cases given service ..
Table XX.—Summary of Casework Activity on Cases Carried in Social Service
Department, April 1st, 1953, to March 31st, 1954
Total casework interviews with and regarding
I       789
Total casework interviews with adults	
Total casework interviews with children	
Team conferences on private cases	
Casework conferences	
Consultation with team members 	
Periods of supervision   	
Table XXI.—Changing Focus of Casework Activity of Social Service Department,
Vancouver Clinic, 1950-53
Agency brief-service cases (including travelling clinic)
Direct-service cases carried in case loads	
Total cases given service	
Average private cases carried per worker	
1,392 (100.0%)
1,270    (78.2%)
354    (21.8%)
1,624 (100.0%)
Table XXII.—Changing Extent of Casework Activity in Private Cases Carried by Social
Service Department, Vancouver Clinic (for Brief-service and Continued-service
Cases Combined), 1950—53.
Extent per Case
Casework interviews with and regarding clients-
Conferences with other agency professional staff
Consultations with other team members	
Total supervision periods per worker	
Table XXIII.—Estimated Casework Activity in Private Cases Carried by Social Service
Department, Vancouver Clinic, on Brief-service Cases, 1953—54
Activity Total
Estimated number of cases, brief service, 35 per cent of total cases 184
Estimated team conferences, 1 or less per case . 184
Estimated consultations, 0 per case.	
Estimated number of interviews, 3 or less per case 552
Table XXIV.—Estimated Casework Activity in Private Cases Carried by Social Service
Department, Vancouver Clinic, on Continued-service Cases, 1953-54
Per Case
Estimated number of cases, continued service, 65 per cent of total cases
Estimated team conferences	
Estimated consultations	
Estimated number of interviews	
(Miss) Alice K. Carroll, f"
Provincial Supervisor, Psychiatric Social Work.
I beg to present a summary report of the activities of the hospital-clearance pro
gramme, for which the services of the Social Welfare Branch through the Field Service
staff are given to hospitals throughout the entire Province of British Columbia, for \\t
fiscal year 1953-54.
f The Provincial Field Service staff, in assisting general hospitals in British Columbia
in problem cases by arrangement through the Hospital Consultation and Inspection
Division, are giving a highly commendable service. The majority of hospitals in tfe
Province have no established social service departments of their own.
During the year 1953-54 there were 262 cases referred direct to the Hospital Con-
sultation and Inspection Division for hospital clearance. Removal of 219 cases was
effected by the field social workers to suitable alternative placement.
It should be borne in mind that the figures given above do not in any way constitute
the true number of cases handled in the field, as patients with residence in any organized
city or municipal area would not of necessity be known to the Hospital Consultation and
Inspection Division unless a problem did arise necessitating referral to the Division under
Regulation II of the regulations under the 1 Hospital Act." The initial referral oi
hospital-clearance cases is based on residence.
While counselling service is given to hospitals by the Hospital Consultation and
Inspection Division and to the field upon request, the casework service to the patient is
given by the social worker in the field on the same basis as any other client, and without
disruption of service, merely because the person happens to be a patient in hospital.
The Provincial Field Service staff also submitted ninety-eight social histories in
connection with Provincial Infirmary applications received for the year 1953—54. Al
applications for admission to the Provincial Infirmary are screened through the Hospital
Consultation and Inspection Division Vancouver office. It is required that a complete
social history, in duplicate, be obtained with respect to each Infirmary application, and
the Field Service staff compile, upon request, all social histories in this regard.
Reference has been made herein with respect to hospital-clearance problem cases,
and regarding removal from hospital to suitable alternative placement. It is noted that
over the past few years there has been greater demand for accommodation particularly
for aged persons where nursing care and attention can be given. Lack of resources in
this regard in many local areas does therefore increase the work entailed on the part of
the social worker in planning with and for hospital-clearance cases.
During the past year there have been some interesting developments in the private
hospital or so-called nursing-home field, and new projects have been established. At
the end of the year 1953 there were forty-four licensed private hospitals in the Province,
comprising 1,219 beds for medical, chronic, and convalescent patients. Region I has
eleven private hospitals, comprising 262 beds in all; Region II has twenty-seven private
hospitals, comprising 735 beds in all; Region III has no private hospitals or so-c
nursing homes; Region IV has one large institution at Nelson, comprising 98 beds in
Region V has no private hospitals or so-called nursing homes; and Region VI has five
private hospitals, comprising 124 beds in all.
There appears to be a growing awareness of the need for diversional interests of
occupations for the patients under care in private hospitals. A number of priv*
hospitals have, over the past year, instituted commendable programmes for the patients,
which include friendly visiting on the part of interested church groups or service *
as well as entertainments and birthday remembrances.
The majority of private hospitals are large residences converted for the pufse.
Where these residences are of frame construction, fire safety regulations prohibit W
patients on the second floor. This restriction, particularly in the past year, has no
doubt influenced persons applying for a licence to operate a private hospital to evaluate
realistically and from an economic aspect the relative merits of new construction built for
the purpose as against converting buildings not built for the purpose to such use. As a
result, there is now a trend toward new construction, and one private hospital was rebuilt
last year to one-story construction with 4-bed wards and private-room accommodation,
and there are several projects now under consideration for the construction of 30-bed
private hospitals of cottage type or one-story construction.
While the Field Service staff do not make the necessary investigation or give interpretation with respect to the establishment or licensing of private hospitals, nevertheless
a strong liaison is maintained between the Hospital Consultation and Inspection Division and the Social Welfare Branch with respect to the development of such resources
in the local area, and also with respect to the quality of care being given social-assistance
cases in private hospitals or so-called nursing homes or any complaints in this regard.
Respectfully submitted.
(Mrs.) Edith Pringle, R.N.,
Inspector of Hospitals.
Printed by Don McDiarmid, Printer to the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty


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