There were 18.5 per cent more reports to youth protective services in the Estrie region in the 2018-2019 year as compared to the year before according to Alain St.-Pierre, the region’s interim director of youth protective services (DPJ), who shared the information as a part of the services’ annual report on Wednesday morning. While that statistic is troubling in itself, the director pointed out that this also represents a significantly higher increase than other regions in Quebec, where the provincial average was only 10 per cent higher. “Unfortunately, despite giant steps taken over the course of time and the thousands of children who have been able to benefit from the youth protection act, the number of children who are the subject of a report and require protection continues to rise,” St.-Pierre said. “This situation is very troubling to us at the DPJ.” The director pointed out that rates of reporting across the province have been rising steadily for the last several years, to the degree that a research study has been launched to try to determine what is at the cause of the issue. At the same time, he noted that the fact has a small silver lining in that it indicates that the population continues to consider reporting issues to the DPJ as worthwhile. See full story in the Thursday, Sept. 26 edition of The Record.