Aboriginal girl who was born in April 2000. Twice during her life Phoenix was taken into care by the child welfare authorities in Manitoba and over the 5 years of her life there were 13 occasions when the responsible agency received notices of concern for her safety and well-being and on all of those occasions a file was opened by the agency and soon closed, often without a social worker laying eyes on her. There was a long delay before the inquiry was called, although it was promised at the time of discovery of her body. That was mainly because of the time taken in the prosecution and subsequent unsuccessful appeals by the mother of Phoenix and her then male partner of their convictions for first degree murder. Following confirmation of their convictions by the Manitoba Court of Appeal the public inquiry was convened in 2011. I was mandated to inquire into: a.
the child welfare services provided or not provided to Phoenix Sinclair and her family under
The Child and Family Services Act
any other circumstances, apart from the delivery of child welfare services, directly related to the death of Phoenix Sinclair; and c.
why the death of Phoenix Sinclair remained undiscovered for several months. and to “make such recommendations” as I consider “appropriate to better protect Manitoba children”. Thirty three months elapsed from the time of commencement until delivery of the report. On two occasions, rulings I made during proceedings were unsuccessfully challenged in the Manitoba Court of Appeal, causing long delays. In all we were in session for 92 days and heard from 126 witnesses. With that background it is my intention today to address three areas.