Position Profile

Job Title:  Generalist

Work Unit:  Northwest Region - Slave Lake

Ministry:   Alberta Children's Services / Community and Social Services

Competition Number:  1042414

Date:  May 2017



Alberta Children and Youth Services is committed to ongoing improvement and pursuit of excellence in services to children, youth and families. The Casework Practice Model builds on the evolution to-date and the ongoing evolution of casework practice and directions provided by the Child Youth and Family Enhancement Act (CYFE Act). The CYFE Act places a great emphasis on assessment of children and families in determining the safety of the child, the need for intervention and the type of intervention required. The Casework Practice Model is based on the philosophy that children, youth and families should have input into the decisions that affect their lives. Assessment, engagement and collaboration are cornerstones of the Model.

The Generalist position is a combination of the Assessor, Caseworker, Permanent Guardianship Order (PGO) Worker and Intake Worker. The Generalist must perform the duties of the Assessor as a critical functional component of the role on an ongoing basis, and for the most part, in addition to performing a minimum of 2 of the 3 other child intervention roles of Caseworker, PGO Worker, and Intake Worker.

The purpose of the Generalist role includes:

  • Determine, through the safety and detailed phases, whether a child is safe or is in need of intervention services as defined in the Child Youth and Family Enhancement Act.
  • Ensure services are provided to children and families through case planning and case conferences to meet the child’s unmet needs.
  • Can be the sole guardian of children with Permanent Guardianship Order Status and be responsible to plan for each PGO child’s permanent placement as well as work with the child for their transition to adulthood.
  • Establish or enhance existing relationships and partnerships to enable provision of service to children, youth and families.
  • Prepare parents and children for court and prepares all necessary court documents.

Responsibilities and Activities



  • Children/Youth who are in need of intervention are identified.
  • Information gathered and response provided.
  • Relationships with community stakeholders are established, enhanced and maintained.
  • Community is educated on Children and Youth Services mandate and legislation.


  • Determine the needs and safety of the child, protective factors (strengths) and risk factors (weaknesses) of the home or family environment by gathering, consolidating and analyzing information.
  • Assessment of permanency planning needs for adoptive and non-adoptive PGOs.

Safety Assessment Phase

  • Determine the safety of the child:
    • Collect information through collateral contacts and personal interviews with the child(ren), parents and significant others. The Generalist reviews all the information collected during Intake Phase and plans his/her approach to the assessment including if additional collaterals are required and executes his/her plan.
    • Consult with the supervisor to determine the need for intervention and the safety of the child.
    • Complete the Safety Assessment Record.

Detailed Phase

  • Meet new and changing client needs.
  • The case plan is based on assessment information and is intended to address the child’s need for intervention through the development of goals, tasks, and signs of achievement, responsibilities and time frames that are agreed to by the family and the Generalist:
    • Ensure the service plan is developed, implemented and updated through a case conference.
    • Complete details of Assessment Record.
    • Gather, consolidate and analyze data on the 3 domains of:
      • Child development.
      • Parental capacity.
      • Environmental/family factors.
  • Consult with supervisor regarding the direction for intervention services.
    • Convene a case conference to review the assessment and analysis and develop the case plan.
    • Advocate/negotiate for the child – i.e. education, medical needs, placements or resources.

Service Planning

  • Meet child(ren)’s, youth(s)’ and families’ needs:
    • Assess services.
    • Negotiate goals and determine appropriate programs, tasks, and services.


  • Make referrals to support services, community resources and appropriate services providers.
  • Monitor and evaluate:
    • Child and family progress/compliance and make relevant changes.
    • Monitor service providers/service delivery.

Casework Documentation

  • Documentation of all child and family assessment activities, home assessment reports, file transfers, closures, contact notes, genograms, ecomaps, court requirements, and text screen data.


  • Case specific, involve the sharing of information with family, other helping professionals, school officials, caregivers, and community resources.
  • Case specific, mandatory consultation with supervisor on key decision points concerning the determination of the safety of the child and the need for intervention.

Community Liaison

  • Establish and maintain effective relationship with community services and departmental resources - acting as a liaison and to identify service gaps.
  • Educate community members (including other professional), agencies and adoptive partner groups, about the Generalist role, Child Youth and Family Enhancement Act and information regarding adoption issues, search and reunion.

Court Work

  • Prepare and presents evidence in court and all documentation related to Acts (i.e. CYFE Act, Protection of Sexually Exploited Children Act, Protection of Children Abusing Drugs Act and Drug Endangered Children’s Act) necessary to obtain apprehension/confinement status orders.
  • Prepare and presents evidence in court and all documentation necessary to obtain status order (i.e. TGO; PGO, Supervision Orders, Secure Treatment, court reports).
  • Provide evidence when called.

Conflict Resolution/Crisis Intervention

  • Resolve conflicts between caregivers and child or caregiver; and others involved with the child.

Engagement of Families and Communities

  • Creatively engage and work with the family members and community during the assessment and case planning phases.


  • Decisions related to safety of child in consultation with supervisor.
  • Decisions related to guardianship issues.
  • Determine how to proceed with a case; determine safety of the child and need for more intrusive action through consultation with supervisor.
  • Determine appropriate referrals to meet the child/family needs in consultation with the supervisor.
  • Recommend legal status to pursue.
  • Determine provisions of case plan in collaboration with family and service providers.
  • Recommend expenditures related to placement issues, relationships, individual needs, cultural activities.
  • Recommend access by family members, community of origin, prior placement.
  • Decide if removing child from home in consultation with supervisor.
  • Recommend opening or closing of a file at Intake, Safety, Detailed or Intervention Phase and take necessary action as per consultation with supervisor and department policy.


  • The Generalist practices with considerable independence and is expected to consult with the supervisor at identified decision points of the Casework Practice Model providing rationale for their recommendations.
  • Decisions are driven by consideration for the child/youth and their family and the Generalist’s professional judgement within the parameters of the Act, Regulation, Policies and Standards and philosophy of the Casework Practice Model.  The position must also be familiar with several other pieces of legislation.
  • The duties involve determining urgency of response, gathering assessment information, preparing an analysis of the assessment information, determining the implications for the case planning, making a determination of whether an intervention is required as defined in the Act, establishing the type of service required to meet the needs and urgency of the needs of the child and family and developing the case plan.
  • This position impacts children/youth safety and the family’s capacity to provide a safe and stable environment. The position also impacts the community’s knowledge about children in need and the community’s capacity to be a support to the child/youth and family.
  • Works with clients and collaterals with cross cultural diversity.
  • Meets unique needs of each child and their families.
  • Utilizes creative ways to engage others to be part of the team (family, service teams).
  • Engages the community to support permanency and case planning goals.
  • Leads case conferences with multiple disciplines, professionals, family and other service teams.
  • Assesses and analyzes the situation and identifies the correct intervention and supports to meet the needs of each child/youth and their family.
  • Continually monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of services and supports for the individual child/youth and their family on a regular basis.
  • Provides information and strong rationale to the supervisor at several key decision points of the casework practice model.
  • Deals with vulnerable clients, children at risk and safety issues, volatile clients, drugs and alcohol and family violence issues.
  • Supports community capacity to be engaged in order to improve access to, and provision of, services.
  • Builds and maintains relationships and networks with collaterals in order to provide appropriate timely services.
  • Provides brief services, arranges for interim services and may provide direct service delivery including family support, child management strategies, advocacy, and conflict resolution, and/or family preservation.
  • Jointly develops a case plan with the family.
  • Evaluates provision of service(s) to ensure quality and that services are meeting needs of child, youth and family.
  • Utilizes a broad base knowledge to address questions and refer appropriately.
  • May act as the Guardian.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities



  • Bachelor of Social Work and 1 year related experience or equivalency.


Working knowledge of following legislation and associated regulations, standards, policy and protocols as they relate to and impact assessment and casework practice and service delivery:

  • Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act and Regulations.
  • Family Law Act.
  • Protection of Sexually Exploited Children Act.
  • Freedom of Information and Privacy Act.
  • Family Supports for Children with Disabilities Act.
  • Drug Endangered Children Act.
  • Protection Against Family Violence Act.
  • Protection of Children Abusing Drugs Act.
  • Other new Acts as implemented that directly relate to assessment and casework practice.

General knowledge of:

  • Youth Criminal Justice Act
  • Criminal Code
  • Mental Health Act
  • School Act
  • Indian Act
  • Charter of Rights and Freedom
  • Dependent Adult Act
  • Alberta Health Act

Court Work:

  • Working knowledge of court system related to role and responsibility of child/youth, family and the Assessment:
    • Procedures for initiating, obtaining, and maintain legal authorities under the Act.
    • Court procedures.
    • Unique local judicial court procedures and processes.
    • Ability to present evidence in court.
    • Ability to meet evidentiary and court documentation requirements.

The following competencies are required at a level consistent with the purpose, responsibilities and activities, and scope of the position:


CORE Competency: Theory and Practice
Human Service Workers will:

  • Identify, articulate, and demonstrate application of one’s own personal practice approach.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and assessment skills in the planning and decision-making processes.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of factors and conditions that impact family functioning and will apply that knowledge to one’s own role.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of child development and how it may be impacted by environmental and organic factors or conditions and apply that knowledge in one’s role.
  • Identify, articulate, and demonstrate a range of child management strategies.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of indicators of child abuse and neglect and can apply procedures and protocols appropriately to one’s role.
  • Have a working knowledge of and exercise safety strategies for self and others.

Job Specific Competency: Practice Skills and Knowledge
Generalist will:

  • Use a multi-disciplinary approach in the assessment and case planning processes.
  • On an on-going basis, using a strength-based approach, gather, analyze and interpret child and family information to formulate a case analysis and make decision for case planning.
  • Accurately identify, document and respond to physical, emotional and behavioural indicators of abuse, neglect and emotional injury.
  • Identify and apply strategies to engage and involve children, youth and families in the on-going assessment and case planning processes.
  • Ensure goals and tasks are realistic, measurable, time-limited and understandable to all parties in case planning.
  • Be able to evaluate the effectiveness of the intervention.
  • Demonstrate the ability to engage in permanency/concurrent planning from the first point of contact.
  • Assess client’s motivation, capacity and opportunity to make changes to resolve the intervention concern(s).
  • Continually assess the immediacy of risk, make key decisions and respond in a timely manner.
  • Coordinate and/or provide direct service to resolve the intervention concern(s).
  • Be able to identify criteria and implement procedures for effectively terminating service once the family’s needs are met.
  • Have the knowledge and skills to complete necessary documents for court and present evidence in court.
  • Maintain the balance between protecting children and supporting and strengthening children and families.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply the principles of guardianship and being a guardian.


The Generalist demonstrates effective listening and non-verbal communication skills.

CORE Competency: Communication
Human Services Workers will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to conduct planned and purposeful interview or communication exchanges.
  • Demonstrate the ability to ask for, receive and give feedback.
  • Present written and verbal information clearly.
  • Educate and provide needed information to others.
  • Demonstrate the ability to respond appropriately to anger and hostility.
  • Describe and demonstrate a range of accepted conflict resolution, negotiation and problem-solving techniques.

Job Specific Competency: Communication
Generalists will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to interview children, youth and adults.
  • Engage in dialogue with individuals and families to ensure a shared understanding of the assessment, case analysis and case planning.


The Generalist’s values are consistent with the Government of Alberta’s values of: respect, integrity, accountability and excellence.

CORE Competency: Value
Human Service Workers will:

  • Demonstrate respect towards clients, colleagues and community members.
  • Demonstrate genuine interest and caring about individuals and their journeys.
  • Incorporate belief in family strengths into own practice.
  • Practice in a manner that reflects the uniqueness of each child.

Job Specific Competency: Value
Generalists will:

  • Have values and beliefs that support the preservation of families and the protection of children and youth.
  • Have a belief that all children and families have unique strengths and have a right of self-determination.
  • Have a belief in alternate dispute resolution.
  • Have a commitment to continuously enhance quality of case practice.
  • Demonstrate respect, empathy, sensitivity and behave ethically towards clients, colleagues and community members.
  • Have a belief that the family is the expert in their circumstance and have the ability to realize their own potential.
  • Have a belief that one’s work with families is transparent.
  • Believe one’s work with families and colleagues is a collaborative effort.


The Generalist demonstrates respect, empathy, support, sensitivity and behaves ethically and professionally towards clients, colleagues and community members.

CORE Competency: Professionalism
Human Service Workers will:

  • Know and adhere to the code of conduct and ethics of the organization.
  • Understand and adhere to the principles of: respecting dignity; individuality; right to self-determination; building on strengths.
  • Understand one’s role and perform within the scope of one’s responsibilities.
  • Have awareness of own professional authority and influence, its impact on others and will use that authority and influence appropriately.
  • Be aware of how one’s own personal experience and values impact professional behavior and judgment.
  • Develop and maintain professional relationships with others.
  • Demonstrate adaptability, flexibility and creativity in responding to opportunities, challenges and change.
  • Demonstrate personal responsibility and accountability for decision made and actions taken within one’s role.
  • Evaluate and take initiative in enhancing professional effectiveness within one’s role.
  • Demonstrate the ability to act as an advocate.
  • Plan, organize, and manage work, set priorities and perform activities in a manner that best uses existing resources and time.
  • Understand the origins and consequences of work-related stress and use coping and management skills to promote wellness.

Job Specific Competency: Professionalism
Generalists will:

  • Present self in a supportive, concerned and respectful manner from initial contact.
  • Demonstrate the ability to respond to varying levels of crisis and complexity and work within an environment that can present unknown and unpredictable elements.
  • Acknowledge the intrusive nature of one’s role and practice in a manner that respects the rights of the child, youth and family.
  • Recognize trauma inherent in this work and take action to mange the impact on one’s self.
  • Have a working knowledge applicable policies and standards related to intake worker safety.


CORE Competency: Diversity
Human Service Workers will:

  • Practice in a manner that reflects understanding of and respect for cultural, ethnic, spirituality and lifestyle diversity.

Job Specific Competency: Diversity
Generalists will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to incorporate knowledge of diverse values, community standards, norms, lifestyles, cultures ethnicities and spirituality of children and families in assessments, case planning and placement.
  • Practice in a manner that respects the unique history, traditions and experience of Aboriginal people.
  • Practice in a meaner that respects the unique history, traditions and experiences of immigrant children and families.
  • Respect and support the unique abilities and practice styles within one’s team.


CORE Competency: Partnership and Teamwork
Human Service Workers will:

  • Cultivate, establish and enhance working relationships with a wide network of individuals, interest groups, and service providers.
  • Work collaboratively and productively with others to achieve results.
  • Actively participate as a team member.

Job Specific Competency: Partnerships, Collaboration and Teamwork
Generalists will:

  • Have working knowledge of community resources and demonstrate the ability to facilitate linkages.
  • Work cooperatively with colleagues and community for the best interests of the child and family.
  • Identify gaps and advocate for solutions.
  • Build collaborative relationships with all stakeholders.
  • Have a working knowledge of how to develop partnerships and collaborate with Aboriginal and immigrant communities.
  • Contribute to a collaborative partnership with one’s supervisor.

CORE Competency: Legislation, Organization and Systems
Human Services Workers will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the organizational structure of the Ministry, the various delegated agencies, Authorities and own worksite, and the relationships under which they operate.
  • Understand and describe the mission, goals and program of the Ministry, the Authority or delegated agency and the worksite.
  • Know, interpret and apply relevant legislation, regulations and policy.
  • Demonstrate an awareness and understanding of jurisdictional protocols as they relate to one’s role.
  • Identify systemic issues and advocate for improvements within the organizational structure.
  • Have an awareness of risk management and liability as it relates to one’s role and can respond to sensitive issues according to organizational protocols.
  • Understand and use relevant administrative, financial, and information management systems.
  • Adhere to the confidentiality guidelines of the organization.
  • Know and understand communities served and resources (internal and external, formal and informal) available within that community.

Job Specific Competency: Legislation, Policy, Standards and Systems
Generalists will:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the CYFE Act and regulations and apply this knowledge to one’s role.
  • Interpret and apply other relevant legislation, regulations and protocols that guide intervention practice.
  • Know the policy, standards and protocols regarding service delivery and recognize the implications for practice.
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of the court system as it relates to the role and responsibility of the child, the family and the Generalist.
  • Know the procedures for initiating, obtaining, and maintaining legal authorities under the CYFE Act.
  • Know the legislation and policy regarding the various intervention legal statuses and recognize the implications for practice.
  • Know the mandate and work collaboratively with other government departments and community agencies.


Generalist will:

  • Recognize that most contact will be by phone and make determination of risk by gathering as much information as possible given the limitations of non-face-to-face contact.
  • Assess the motivation and veracity of the caller.
  • Determine the immediacy of risk, make key decisions and determine the response time.
  • Be able to identify the risk to receiving the worker’s safety based on information obtained.
  • Develop and implement an immediate safety plan for walk-ins and callers.
  • Have a working knowledge of, and maintain a current listing of, services/contacts available in the community and other jurisdictions.
  • Provide information to address a range of questions and refer to appropriate services as required.
  • Engage collaterals to solicit information that could negate or support the report.
  • Determine whether the referral information constitutes a report under the CYFE Act.
  • Engage in case-specific consultations to explore options and strategies regarding children potentially at risk.
  • Navigate CYIM and ISIS and be able to input information.
  • Develop formal and informal networks for information gathering and sharing.
  • Present information and educate the community about the Ministry’s programs and services.
  • Track and compile data for identification of workload, systemic issues and community gaps.



To enable the safety of the child/youth and the development of a comprehensive case plan that meets the identified needs of the child/youth and their family the Child Intervention Generalist has contact with:

  • Child with their family and may include extended family.
  • Professionals (hospitals, schools).
  • Colleagues and manager.
  • Community and contracted agencies, service teams as per Matters to be Considered in the CYFE Act.
  • Legal system (courts, lawyers, RCMP, police).
  • Other government program areas (i.e. The Office of the Child and Youth Advocate).
  • Interest groups.
  • Other Provincial jurisdictions.
  • First Nations Band Designate/Métis Resource Person.

Supervision Exercised



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