Serious Incident Reporting Policy for EarlyON Child and Family Centre Service Providers

EarlyON Child and Family Centre service providers are responsible for managing and reporting on any serious incidents which affect the health, safety and well-being of children and caregivers attending EarlyON Child and Family Centres.  Service providers report this information directly to the City of Hamilton.

Serious incident categories

The City of Hamilton defines a serious incident as:

  1. Death of a child or caregiver that occurs on the premises.
  2. Allegation of abuse and/or neglect of a child.
  3. Life-threatening injury to a child or caregiver or life-threatening illness of a child or caregiver that requires treatment by a regulated health professional (doctor, nurse, dentist, etc.) and/or a life-threatening injury that involves police, fire or ambulance/EMS/paramedics.
  4. An unplanned disruption of the normal operations of a child and family centre premises that poses a risk to the health, safety or well-being of children and families attending the centre:
    a. Fire
    b. Flood
    c. Gas Leak
    d. Detection of Carbon Monoxide
    e. Outbreak
    f. Lockdown
    g. Other Emergency Relocation or Temporary Closure.
  5. A situation with high potential for public criticism of the City and/or ministry and/or if the situation may lead to questions being asked by the media.

How to report a serious incident

EarlyON Child and Family Centre service providers are required to have a serious incident internal policy in place that addresses how to identify a serious incident; respond to a serious incident; and report a serious incident to the City of Hamilton. 

  1. You will need to complete an online Serious Incident Report (SIR). You must submit the SIRs report within 24 hours of becoming aware of the incident.   
  2.  The City will review the information, and follow up accordingly. 

Service providers are responsible for reporting all serious incidents, as defined in the categories above that occur in an EarlyON Child and Family Centres to the City of Hamilton. 

EarlyON Child and Family Program Serious Incident Protocol

Timeframe Responsibility
Immediately Child and Family Centre service providers will:
  • Address health and safety with client(s)
  • Notify Children’s Aid Society, as appropriate
  • Notify all other applicable parties, as required
Serious Incident Report (within 24 hours) Child and Family Centre service providers will:
  • Determine if the incident is a serious incident to be reported to the City of Hamilton, and if so, complete and submit a Serious Incident Report (SIR), retaining a copy for tracking purposes.
Upon receipt of SIR City of Hamilton will:
  • Acknowledge receipt of SIR.
  • Review all information and action taken by the Child and Family Centre and determine whether any additional follow up action or response is required (e.g. report to a children’s aid society).
  • Review the SIR and determine whether the incident meets the threshold for reporting to the Ministry of Education.
  • Where an incident has occurred that may result in media attention, the City will report this to their Early Years Advisor at the Ministry of Education.

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