External probe into deaths of Quebec boys calls for reform to youth protection system

Provincial police, the coroner's office, Quebec's human rights commission and youth protection are all investigating the case. Mario Beauregard / The Canadian Press

An external investigation into the deaths of two Quebec boys is calling for in-depth reform of the province’s youth protection system and the law that governs it.

Dr. Lionel Carmant, Quebec’s junior health minister, released the findings on Monday in the case of two young boys found dead in a home in October in Wendake, Que., northwest of Quebec City.

Carmant had called for the probe after it was reported that youth protection in the Quebec City area didn’t follow up on reports regarding the family’s concerns about the accused. The investigation was conducted by criminologist Michelle Dionne.

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The bodies of the boys, age 5 and 2, were found Oct. 13 in a home on in the Huron-Wendat First Nation territory. Michael Chicoine is charged with two counts of second-degree murder and will return to court on Jan. 12.

The recommendations for the regional health authority in Quebec City include making improvements to training and supervision of youth protection workers in order to ensure they are capable of taking the best decisions in the interests of children.

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Carmant said in a statement that he’s committed to reforming Quebec’s youth protection system and the law.

Provincial police, the coroner’s office, Quebec’s human rights commission and youth protection are all investigating the case.

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