Rachel Notley defends Alberta human services minister in death of child after she was in kinship care

Serenity died in 2014 when she was four years old. Supplied to Global News

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story originally indicated Serenity died while in kinship care. However, on Oct. 6, 2017, Alberta’s Ministry of Children’s Services clarified that although it was through the kinship care program that she was put in the care of the man and woman now facing charges, they were later given permanent guardianship, meaning Serenity was no longer in kinship care. It was at some point after this development that Serenity died. 

Alberta’s opposition parties are renewing calls for the human services minister to be fired over the death of a child in care, but Premier Rachel Notley says they’re just playing politics.

READ MORE: Mother of 4-year-old Alberta girl who died in kinship care speaks out – ‘They completely ignored me’

Notley told the house during question period that she has faith Irfan Sabir will fix problems that lead to the deaths of children in government care.

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Watch below: The case of a four-year-old Alberta girl who died while in kinship care has sparked outrage across the province. Now, the mother of the girl is speaking out about the tragedy. Sarah Kraus reports.

Click to play video: 'Mother of young Alberta girl who died in kinship care speaks out'
Mother of young Alberta girl who died in kinship care speaks out

Opposition members called for Sabir to resign last week after media reports revealed time lags and inaction by his department in pursuing the death of a girl named Serenity.

READ MORE: Wildrose calls for emergency debate on ‘secrecy’ surrounding death of child in care

Serenity was four years old when she died in 2014, after being taken to hospital with a head injury.

It’s since been revealed that there were delays and confusion in the government and with police investigations into her death.

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READ MORE: Alberta minister rejects calls for resignation over death of girl in government care

According to the Edmonton Journal, hospital staff noted she had bruises all over her body, including her pubic and genital area. Global News has not been able to independently verify these claims. A report by Alberta’s Child and Youth Advocate also said doctors noted Serenity had bruises at various stages of healing and was “significantly underweight.”

READ MORE: Alberta government setting up all-party committee to examine child’s death in kinship care

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