If your family becomes involved with the child welfare system it can be an intimidating, confusing and overwhelming experience. Having a better understanding of how the system works can make this difficult situation easier. Below are some resources to help you understand what the general roles and responsibilities are of the different areas of the child welfare system. If you feel like someone has done something wrong and you have tried to resolve your concerns through all existing remedies, please contact the Office of Children’s Ombudsman (OCO) to file a complaint.
Roles and Responsibilities
- Children’s Protective Services (CPS)
Ensures that children are protected from abuse and neglect caused by a parent or other adult responsible for a child’s health and welfare.
Provided below is a link to the Publication 137, a guide to working with Children Protective Services.
- Foster Care (FC)
Provides a temporary placement and supervision of children who cannot safely remain at home while their parents get help to resolve the issues that brought their children into care.
Children are referred to adoption services for the purposes of locating them a permanent family when they cannot be returned home and parental rights have been terminated.
- Juvenile Justice (JJ)
Seeks to provide youth and families with the knowledge and skills needed to reduce delinquent behaviors. It also aims to provide safe and proper care that is appropriate to the youths’ individual needs while taking into account community safety.