Critic Roles

Ministry of Social Services

The Ministry of Social Services is responsible for overseeing income support programs, child and family services, supports for persons with disabilities, as well as housing supports. The Ministry relies on a network of community-based organizations to provide third-party services across the province. As official critic in this area Meara is responsible for individual and system-wide advocacy for improvements to the services available to Saskatchewan people across the province.

The Ministry oversees the newly implemented Saskatchewan Income Support (SIS) program and the Saskatchewan Assured Income Disability (SAID) programs. While the Saskatchewan Party government has lauded the change to SIS as a move to greater “choice and responsibility”, this change will mean even fewer supports for the most vulnerable. Meara regularly advocates for people who have not been treated fairly or have been denied supports they are entitled to. She has been very clear that she supports an overhaul to the SIS program, and greater supports to those living with disability.

The Ministry oversees the child apprehension and family services systems. This year will mark the largest Ministry of Social Services budget ever. Despite that, Saskatchewan has set a grim record of the highest number of child welfare deaths in recent history. Saskatchewan’s advocate for children and youth recently called for reforms to better protect vulnerable children living in group homes. Clearly, we can and must do so much better for Saskatchewan’s most vulnerable. Meara is particularly concerned about the child apprehension system in Saskatchewan and the lack of will to make changes. She is committed to key reforms in this area that would see supports getting at the root causes of Ministry involvement – poverty, addiction, and the continuing effect of colonialism.