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April 23, 2000:

Phoenix Victoria Hope Sinclair is born. A Health Sciences Centre social worker contacts Child and Family Services, says Samantha Kematch had no prenatal care and has another child in permanent care. Kematch and Phoenix's father, Steve Sinclair, say they are unprepared to parent. A CFS social worker is assigned case. Kematch discloses her first child was taken "because they thought I would hurt him."

April 24:

Kematch changes her mind, says she wants to keep her baby. Phoenix is taken into care because of first child, CFS history of both Sinclair and Kematch. CFS social worker Marnie Saunderson notes Kematch shows little interest in Phoenix.

April 25:

Record shows Phoenix is a "very healthy baby." Sinclair curses Saunderson on the phone because he can't see Phoenix immediately. Saunderson recuses herself because of a conflict of interest. Her cousin is Nikki Taylor (now Humenchuk), a supervisor at the Boys and Girls Club and an advocate to have Phoenix returned to her parents. Phoenix is taken to an emergency shelter in Place Louis Riel, then moved to a foster home the next day. CFS has a three-month temporary order, later extended by one month.

April 25:

Supervisor Andy Orobko takes over Phoenix's file temporarily. There is no assigned worker on the case from April 28-May 6.


Social worker Kerri-Lynn Greeley assigned Phoenix's file. Supervisor Orobko notes on the file there are issues with Kematch that Greeley needs to examine.


Parents visit with Phoenix on a weekly basis at a CFS office, seeing her for two hours. Greeley would "pop in" during visits.


Couple completes parenting course.

June 20:

In-home support worker Marie Pickering (formerly Belanger) is assigned by CFS to teach parenting skills. Her visits are to run July 10-Oct. 30.


Supervisor Angie Balan is hired and becomes Greeley's boss.

Sept. 5:

Phoenix is reunited with her parents. They sign a six-month agreement with CFS, which details conditions they must comply with or risk having Phoenix returned to care.

Sept. 5:

The last time Greeley is in the home.

Sept. 13:

Kematch meets with psychiatrist Dr. Gary Altman to determine whether she is depressed. He concludes she is not. He was not asked to conduct a parental capacity assessment.

Oct. 2:

Greeley transferred. File goes to supervisor Balan, who also acts as the worker. She does not visit the home. She testified that was not an expectation of a supervisor. In-home support worker still visits house four to six hours a week.

Nov. 14:

Delores Chief-Abigosis inherits the file. Balan reviews the six-month service agreement with her. It includes: Kematch to see Dr. Altman; Sinclair and Kematch to work co-operatively with CFS, the family services worker and a public health nurse, and participate in a parenting class. CFS will help them find a pediatrician. There is no recorded contact between Chief-Abigosis and the family until Feb. 5, 2001.

Nov. 30:

The family-support-worker contract, extended one month, expires.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 1, 2012 A6

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