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Community Alliance Unified Family Court Social Service Component. Assessment Phase Report August 11, 2006 Mary E. Hurm, LCSW. UFC Social Service Component.
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Community AllianceUnified Family Court Social Service Component Assessment Phase Report August 11, 2006 Mary E. Hurm, LCSW
UFC Social Service Component • In November 2005, Chief Judge Kathleen J. Kroll and the Community Alliance of Palm Beach County collaborated regarding the development of a social service component for Unified Family Court • Social Service Component development consists of three phases: • Assessment Phase: May-August 2006 • Protocol Development Phase: August -September 2006 • Implementation Phase: September-October 2006
Judiciary-13 State Attorney’s Office-2 Public Defender Office-4 Domestic Violence Council-7 Child and Family Connections-16 Juvenile Probation Officers-9 Department of Children and Families-4 Legal Aid-2 Detention Personnel-18 JAC Screeners-5 Assessment Task:Identify what Services are Needed by Children and Families Individuals from the following groups were surveyed to determine what social services are needed by children and families in Palm Beach County: Total Number of Responses=80
Survey Results:Barriers to Clients Achieving their Goals Responses were grouped into the following categories: • Service Problems • Uncooperative Families • Family/Individual Issues • Environmental Stressors
Affordable Housing Family Therapy- Quality and Affordable Child Care Employment Substance Abuse Services Mental Health Services Parenting Classes Visitation Services Random drug screens Relative Caregiver Funds Sexual Abuse Counseling In Home Therapeutic Services Batterers Intervention Programs (due to fees) Information about Adult Probation (communication between DJJ and Adult System) Survey Results:Services that are Most Difficult to Access
Affordable Mental Health Multilingual Psychotherapy in Glades Foster Home Placements Anger Management Classes Domestic Violence Classes Children’s Classes Random Drug Screens that are really random Local Psychological Evaluation Sites Residential placements like group homes for delinquent youth Affordable housing In home services After hours services Drug testing center for Riviera Beach Community Activities/Social skills Child Care Legal Medication English as a second language Respite Beds for DV cases Shelter beds for delinquency cases Sex Offender Treatment Survey Results:Other Services Identified as High Need
Group Counseling Free School for parents (trade school) Legal Employment Individual & Family Therapy Parenting Classes Family Violence Intervention Program CINS/FINS Psychological Evaluations Mediation UFC Case Managers Self Service Center DOVE and Victim Advocates Survey Results:Services Consistently Benefiting Families
Any program with a long wait time Welfare/Housing Assistance DCF Mental Health Legal Substance Abuse Medication Education Custody Evaluations DOR phone service Survey Results:Services Not Consistently Benefiting Families
After 1st or 2nd visit- families don’t follow through Once referrals for services are made (no follow up) After reunification, only 6 more months of services- not enough Lack of services for mentally ill kids High caseloads make it hard for Dependency CM’s to follow up Turn around time in services (referrals expiring before intake) Medicaid Coverage Urgency in receiving inpatient/residential treatment Survey Results:Where/Why do Families Fall Through the Cracks?
Assessment Task:Brief Survey of UFC Court Files • 16 families examined • Approximately 60 total court cases • 59 adults, 44 children • 16 Mothers, 29 Fathers, 6 Grandparents, 5 Aunts/Uncles, 2 Non-relative custodians, and 1 stepmother
Brief Survey of UFC Court Files:Statistics • 39 Abuse Reports Filed, Children removed 7 times, 1 TPR • 75 Delinquency Charges between 12 children • Crossover Case Types: • Dependency, Delinquency, Domestic Relations, Civil Domestic Violence and Misdemeanor DV
Children’s Home Society St. Mary’s Multilingual Youth Services Bureau Parent Child Center Family Central Drug Abuse Foundation Court Psychology Forest Hill Counseling Girls and Boys Town Brief Survey of UFC Case Files:Most Commonly Referred to Resources
DV Council Resource Guide Palm Beach County Guide to Services NAMI of Palm Beach County Mental Health Resource Guide Children Services Counsel Directory of Funded Programs United Way Funded Program List Palm Beach County Family Almanac 211 –includes the Youth Yellow Pages and Senior Guide No Substance Abuse Guide for Palm Beach County Assessment Task: Identify Community Resources
Assessment Task: Model Programs and Best Practices • King County, WA • Fulton County, GA • Jackson County, OR • Deschutes County, OR • Denver Juvenile Justice Integrated Treatment Network • NYC Mid Town Community Court • Palm Beach County Community Court
Assessment Task: Model Programs and Best Practices, King County, WA • Has been in operation for 6 Years • Standardized Referral form to create profile of family issues, services needed • Case Manager looks at cases, what services ordered, conflicting orders, recommended services that are not yet ordered • CM will get releases to any agencies families are connected with and monitor compliance with court ordered services • CM provides a one page Family Update to court at every review hearing – can include various reports for Judge to review
Model Programs and Best Practices:Fulton County, GA • Has been in operation since 2001 • One social service coordinator per judge • SS coordinator provides: • Home visits/custody evaluations • Scheduling clients for DNA testing • Drug testing • Make recommendation to the judge usually around custody issues • Individual counseling, service referrals, and mediation • Collaborates with community agencies to conduct seminars: divorce, child support, DV, responsible fatherhood
Model Programs and Best Practices:Jackson County, OR • Family Resource Centers- can house as many as 17 agencies in one building • Offers three levels of service: • Level 1- compile all related cases • Level 2- assigned to one judge and screens to determine if family could benefit from integration of services • Level 3- Regular court visits and comprehensive family plan- services are through the Family Resource Center or interagency service team • Utilizes a Family Self-Sufficiency Scale
Model Programs and Best Practices:Deschutes County, OR • Initially developed FAST (Family Advocate Screening Team) to screen all family court cases • FAST consists of a group of agency supervisors and bar representatives who review family status and refer appropriate cases to Multidisciplinary Team representatives • The MDT (Multidisciplinary Team) then develops a family plan that established services, determines delivery dates and evaluation criteria. The families participate in the plan.
Model Programs and Best Practices:Deschutes County, OR-Key Points • Has been in operation over 10 years • Agencies are accountable to the family and group • Agencies initially reluctant but have found that planning collaboratively has made their case plans more specialized and more efficient • The coordinator is a neutral party whose main role is to facilitate the meetings • Can do two separate meetings if there are issues of domestic violence or high conflict • Active case load of 15-16 families at one time • Consistent agency participation at meetings is needed
Social Service Coordination:Common Best Practices • Services and plans are comprehensive and tailored to specific strengths and needs of families and participants • Judges are aware of variety and type of services in community • Services are provided in a timely manner • Shared databases and access to information • Culturally competent service provision • Accessibility- procedures need to be as simple as possible and convenient to access • Child friendly courts and visiting rooms/child care • Accountability of all providers not just families • Early assessment and single point of contact • Timelines are established and followed and determined with consideration to length of time viewed through the eyes of a child From, “How are Courts Coordinating Family Cases?” State Justice Institute, 1999