FOSTER CARE. Shasta County Health and Human Services Marta McKenzie, RD, MPH, Director Shasta County Superior Court The Honorable Molly Bigelow , Dependency Judge. Objectives of Presentation. Role of child welfare system Role of the Dependency Court
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Shasta County Health and Human Services
Marta McKenzie, RD, MPH, Director
ShastaCounty Superior Court
The Honorable MollyBigelow,
Our child abuse reporting line is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 225-5144
3,438 children were referred for abuse and neglect in Fiscal Year 2009-10
815 required further involvement with the child welfare system
Child can’t safely remain at home
Law enforcement officer removes child from home (temporary custody)
Emergency medical or psychiatric services are provided
Alternatives for care: other parent, relative, receiving home
Intensive investigation within 48 hours to decide whether to continue custody
Get children into stable homes – ideally their own – as quickly as safely possible
Limited amount of time to offer reunification services
311 Shasta County children entered foster care in 2008
338 in 2009
363 in 2010
Role of the Court
Ensure that children are safe from abuse and neglect.
Children who are, or at risk of:
abuse, neglect or exploitation
If it can be done safely
in a timely manner.
Either return home to parents;
Adoption, Guardianship or LTFC
Severe physical abuse
Causing the death of another child
Abuse of Sibling
Domestic Violence – 40%
Substance Abuse – 85%
Mental Health of Parents – 18%
General Neglect – 35%
Emotional Abuse – 13%
Physical Abuse – 14%
Severe Neglect – 5%
Sexual Abuse – 9%
In the home of
Custody of the
Hearing on the allegations in the petition.
Can the children remain safely in the home?
Children do better at home.
Children need family/permanence.
Removal has long term consequences.
Child safety requires financial resources.
In December 2010, there were 924 adoptions assistance payments made
~ $8.9 million in foster care placement
~ $10.5 million in adoption assistance (about $880,000 for adoptions staff and services)
~ $12.9 million in child welfare staff and services
* Group home rates increased by 32 percent in February 2010 (retroactive to Dec. 2009)
** Rate litigationpending
A Oftensupplementedbaseduponneeds of child
More intensive assessment of familyneedsatoutset of case
Rigorous use of child welfare practice tools to ensurewell-informed and consistent decisionmaking (SDM, SOS, FTM, familyfinding)
More foster parents willing to mentor & support parents to reunify
Continuedimplementation of Safe Care®
Community-wide Triple P implementation and more community support for familieswithyoungchildren
More college-going and career planning
Continuedeasyaccess and payment for birth control
More family-to-family connections for self help, respite and parenting support
from Casey Family Programs
Lisa Tange, LCSW
San Diego Field Office
California still has:
Focus on SAFE reduction of children in foster care through:
- Reducing entries into care
- Shortening the length of stay in care
- Increasing exits
In California DR is defined as:
Developing a broader set of responses to reports of possible child abuse or neglect, including prevention and early intervention, engaging families to address issues of safety and risk, and improving access to services
YOU CAN raise your voice and express to lawmakers, policymakers and the media that supporting prevention and early intervention strategies is a top community priority.
YOU CAN support policies that assist grandparents, aunts, uncles and older siblings caring for children who have been removed from their parents.
A pledge by a supportive adult to provide specific supports to a young person in foster care with a goal of establishing a lifelong,
The life Of
The life of
because that is where I will spend the rest
of my life.”
will ever learn is just to love,
and be loved in return.”
learning to love
and dirt bikes
me that I can be
I would fix the problem before it
started. Prevention of the initial
problem is the only true solution.
“An ounce of precaution is worth a pound of cure.”