The Lac La Ronge Indian Band’s Child and Family Service Unit is about to get a lot more files.

Today the province announced it is preparing to shift over responsibility of child welfare services for children in the La Ronge area to the band.

Since last year the La Ronge agency has been providing after-hour and weekend emergency child-protection services to kids living off-reserve.

As of December 1st, the plan is to have the agency take over the files of individual children within foster families, recruit and retain new foster families, oversee extended family-care and other out-of-home care for children and provide services to to 16 and 17 year-olds.

Social services minister June Draude says she has full confidence in the band’s ability to take on the job:

“They are highly respected and to know we are placing children with them is something that I’m very comfortable with and I know that governments see them as exceptional partners when it comes to dealing with children and youth.”

She adds the band will continue to receive funding on a per-child model.

Chief of the band Tammy Cook-Seerson says she’s pleased with the move and sees it as a natural progression:

“Well it’s just part of the transition.  In 2011 we started working the after-hours for off-reserve, for La Ronge and area, so now we’re expanding all the services.”

Cook-Seerson adds their agency will also be responsible for cases in Pinehouse, Stanley Mission and Brabant Lake.