1.1.0 Introduction

Chapter 1 contains provincial case management standards. They apply to the delivery of service by mandated child and family services agencies and, with respect to non-agency adoption services, to licensed adoption agencies.

Chapter Content

This chapter is divided into eight sections as follows:
Section 1 – Intake
Section 2 – Assessment
Section 3 – Planning
Section 4 – Service Provision
Section 5 – Evaluation
Section 6 – Service Completion 
Section 7 – Preparing Youth for Leaving Care
Section 8 – Agreements with Young Adults


Section 7 of The Child and Family Services Act lists the duties of child and family services agencies.
The Adoption Regulation contains detailed requirements for the delivery of adoption services by child and family services agencies and licensed adoption agencies.


As with many other jurisdictions, Manitoba has adopted a case management approach to the delivery of child and family services (including adoption services).
Child Protection Branch has adapted the core competency-based training program developed by the Institute for Human Services at Ohio State University for use in Manitoba.
The case management standards in this chapter are generally consistent with the curriculum.


Case management is a systematic approach to managing the provision of services to individuals, families and children.

Need for Case Management Standards

Case management standards help to ensure that agency workers, supervisors and managers:
  • identify the needs of individuals, families or children requesting or requiring services and match them to available services and resources
  • coordinate the delivery of services in an effective and efficient way
  • follow a consistent process in delivering services
These standards were developed over time and reflect the current wisdom in the field. Agency staff and managers are encouraged to test them and recommend revisions that will improve them.

Case Management Stages

The case management process involves six interconnected and overlapping stages starting at intake and concluding with service completion.
While specific issues are to be considered at each stage of the case management process and information recorded in the same way, the methods used to collect that information and work with the child or family may vary depending on the individual, community or culture.

Case Management Themes

These standards are based on four themes or criteria as follows:

Levels of Risk to Children

Child and family services agency workers and supervisors are expected to assess the level of risk to children throughout the case management process to determine the priority that should be given a case. This begins with the Safety Assessment at intake when presenting issues indicate that a child is at risk of suffering harm or injury and may be in immediate need of protection.
Response-time and client-contact standards are based on levels of risk to children as follows:
High Risk – A child is likely to be seriously harmed or injured, subjected to immediate and ongoing sexual abuse, or permanently disabled or dies if left in his or her present circumstances without protective intervention.
Medium Risk – A child is likely to suffer some degree of harm if he or she remains in the home. Intervention is warranted. However, there is no evidence that the child is at risk of imminent serious injury or death.
Low Risk – The home is safe for children. However, there are concerns about the potential for a child to be at risk if services are not provided to prevent the need for protective intervention.
No Risk – The home is safe for children and there are no indications of potential risk to a child.

Contact with Children

The nature and frequency of contact with children are governed by the potential risk to a child (see Levels of Risk above) and the service provided.

Intake workers and case managers must see a child, that is, have direct face-to-face contact, to ensure the child is safe and receives appropriate services in relation to the following case management and service activities:
  • Conducting a safety assessment to determine if a child is or might be in need of protection (see Intake Module and Standard 11 in Section 1.1.1, Intake).
  • Apprehending a child in need of protection (see Standard 17 in Section 1.1.1, Intake).
  • Assessing the risk to and needs of the child to determine what agency services or interventions are required (see Child Assessment standards in Section 1.1.2, Assessment).
  • Involving a child in the planning process to help the child accept a service or prepare for a placement (see Care Plan standards in Section 1.1.3, Planning).
  • Home visits with a family assessed as high or medium risk to ensure the safety and well-being of children in the home (see Standard 2 in Section 1.1.4, Service Provision).
  • Leaving a child found to be in need of protection in the family home or returning a child to the home (see Standard 5 in Section 1.3.1, Child Protection Services).
  • Contact with a child in care placed in a place of safety, foster home, group home, treatment centre or other child care facility (see Standard 3 in Section 1.1.4, Service Provision and Section 1.4.4, Care and Supervision.
  • Placing or moving a child in care (see Section 1.4.1, Child Placement Services), Section 1.5.3, Foster Home Placements, and Section 1.5.6, Removing Foster Children).
  • Pre-placement visits to and placement of a permanent ward for adoption in an adoption home (see Section 1.6.2, Services to Children)
  • Assessing a child’s progress in an adoption home during the supervisory or probationary period (see Section 1.6.3, Services to Adoptive Applicants)
In the case of a child protection emergency, when time or distance prevents immediate face-to-face contact with a child, an intake worker or case manager may rely on the police, a health professional, school authority or community service provider to see the child and to confirm by email or telephone that the child was seen (see Standard 13 in Section 1.1.1, Intake and Use of Collateral Service Providers in Section 1.3.1, Child Protection Services). For example:
  • Circumstances require the police to apprehend a child pursuant to subsection 21(1) of The Child and Family Services Act prior to reporting the matter to a child and family services agency.
  • An admitting nurse in a hospital some distance from the office of a designated intake agency reports admitting a child suspected of being physically and sexual abused and recommends the agency intervene to protect the child.
  • In the course of conducting a child protection investigation, an agency is told that one of the children is staying with a relative or friend some distance away. The agency may rely on a school teacher in the community where the relative or friend resides to confirm the information.