The Advocacy and Protective Services Program
Provides the following services:

  • Legal Advocacy for Criminal and Family Matters
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Trusteeship
  • Supportive Counselling
  • Advocacy for Service Provision Needs

The Advocacy and Protective Service Program is part of Family Service Kent.

The APS Program provides advocacy and support to adult individuals with an intellectual disability.

The APS Program provides service throughout the Municipality of Chatham-Kent.

The APS Program is funded by the Ministry of Community and Social Services and fee for service.

To access services contact Developmental Services Ontario – 519-438-4783 ext. 113 or toll-free 1-877-480-2726.

Developmental Service Ontario website:

Developmental Service Ontario – South West Region website:

Trusteeship Services

Trusteeship, as offered under the APS program, is a voluntary program designed to provide income management assistance for adults with a developmental disability. Funds to be managed may come from the Ontario Disability Support Program, Ontario Works, earned income, CPP, OAS, inheritance, etc.

These are the policy guidelines issued by the Ministry of Community and Social Services on October 2008 (Section 5-2 and 5-3) with regard to funds received from ODSP and are generally followed for the other income sources as well.

In exceptional circumstances, where an individual does not already have a legally authorized substitute (e.g. Office the Public Guardian and Trustee, guardian of property, power of attorney for property), the Advocacy and Protective Service Worker (APSW) may, with the consent of the adult who has a developmental disability, be appointed by the Director of the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) as trustee for management of the individual’s ODSP income support.

The role of trustee by the APS Worker should be temporary while other service alternatives to assume the role of trustee, for management of the person’s ODSP income support, are being sought. This temporary trusteeship on the part of the APSW is not to exceed six (6) months.

The ODSP Policy Directive 10.2 provides guidance on the role of an ODSP trustee in managing a recipient’s income support. A link to the specific Directive can be found here.

In part, the Directive states that the Director of the ODSP may appoint a family member, friend, religious organizations or community agency to at as trustee on behalf of the recipient. The appointment may be initiated at the request of the recipient, a member of the benefit unit, or by ODSP staff. Where no other suitable trustee arrangement is available, an application to the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee may be made.

In choosing a trustee to act for a recipient, the recipient’s caseworker attempts to find someone who is interested and willing to assume the responsibilities; would not be in conflict of interest position by becoming appointed; has the best interests of the recipient in mind; and has a good relationship with the ODSP recipient. Priority consideration should be given to the immediate family of the recipient.

The Director of the ODSP can appoint, remove, or replace a trustee appointed to act for a recipient under the ODSP Act. An appointed trustee can delegate their appointment of the trusteeship.

The trustee’s responsibility is to manage the income support for the benefit of the recipient and other members of the benefit unit. The guiding principle in disbursing the income support is that the monies paid on behalf of the recipient should be necessary for the benefit unit’s support/care and should be provided in a timely manner (e.g. rent is paid on time, food is purchased as required). In making these payments, the trustee must consider the nature of the recipient’s legal obligation (e.g. child support payments, debts).

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