The Director of Youth Protection (DYP) is the Quebec organization that gets involved if a child’s safety or development is in danger. For example, the DYP intervenes if a child is being sexually or physically abused or if a child has been abandoned or neglected. The law sets out the situations where the DYP can intervene.
Reasons for the DYP to get involved
The DYP can become involved in the life of a family to protect children if their safety or development is in danger. Here are some of the reasons the DYP may intervene:
- The child has been sexually or physically abused.
- The child has been abandoned. For example, the parents have died and there is no one to take care of the child.
- The child is being neglected. For example, the child isn’t being fed properly or isn’t being supervised adequately given the child’s age, the child lives in an unsanitary home or isn’t receiving a proper education.
- The child has been emotionally abused. For example, the parents make the child feel worthless or unwanted, or the child has witnessed family violence.
- The child has serious behaviour problems. For example, the child has a drug problem or is violent.
- The child has run away.
It’s not always clear when a child’s safety or development is in danger. The DYP intervenes when a child faces a serious risk of sexual abuse, physical abuse or neglect.
A case-by-case basis assessment
When a situation is reported to the DYP, it will look at different factors in deciding whether to intervene. The DYP will consider the seriousness of the situation, the child’s age and whether the parents are willing and able to protect the child. In other words, the DYP doesn’t always get involved. So even if there was some reason to be concerned about the child, the DYP can decide that it does not need to intervene.
This article explains in a general way the law that applies in Quebec. This article is not a legal opinion or legal advice. To find out the specific rules for your situation, consult a lawyer or notary.