WHAT EVERY PARENT SHOULD KNOW

INFORMATION ALL PARENTS NEED TO KNOW

http://www.tucsonnewsnow.com/story/20283525/confusion-over-budget-for-children-in-cps-custody

 

Posted: Dec 06, 2012 6:56 PM Updated: Dec 06, 2012 8:05 PM

By Barbara Grijalva - bio | email

Joanne Karolzak

Joanne Karolzak

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Thousands of children in Arizona could be affected by a new state policy, and it seems there is a great deal of confusion over what's happening with Child Protective Services.

It's a situation where agencies that work directly with children who have been removed from their homes say the services for those children are being cut.

That's while the state is saying it's not cutting budgets. It's just being fiscally responsible.

It has to do with supervised visitations that local agencies handle for the children and their parents through contracts with the state Division of Children, Youth and Families, or  DCYF.

"We were just informed this week-- Monday of this week, in fact, that the state is running a shortfall when it comes to providing children's services," says Casa de los Ninos Director of Children and Family Services Joanne Karolzak.

11 mostly Tucson-based agencies receive state funds to provide visitation services in Pima County.

When a child is removed from his or her home, visitation with the parents may be set up.

The number of children removed has skyrocketed, but at $18 million, the budget for Parent Aide Services is less than one million dollars more this year than it was last year.

Last year's budget was $17.1 million dollars.  DCYF Assistant Director Veronica Bossack says spending went over-budget at $20.1 million.

The agencies say there's not enough money to cover the need, and it will mean the end of services for some families in Pima County.

That means layoffs for agencies such as Aviva Children's Services that provides 200 to 250 supervised visits a week for children and their parents in pima county.

"After tomorrow, unless something dramatically changes. We will not be hosting visits here." says Aviva Children's Services Executive Director Bob Heslinga.

Heslinga says a conversation he had with a Child Protective Services contract manager on Tuesday went like this:

Heslinga asks, "It says here that we really have no money left and so when do you want us to end the visits? 'Today,' she said. 'End it today.' And I said so we're going to turn over 100 families. What do you want us to do with them? Do we tell them? 'No. Refer them all back to the case manager.'"

Heslinga says that means refer the families back to CPS case managers who already are overloaded with work.

The state seems to be looking for ways to stretch its dollars while dealing with more children than ever in the system.

The Division of Children, Youth and Families says it wants to pay for services only for parents ready to receive them.

Deputy Child Welfare Program Administrator Stacy Reinstein says,"So the message that we are delivering to our providers is that DCYF realizes that services need to be delivered when family and parents are at a level of readiness that creates sustained positive results and outcomes. The services we're providing can't be just automatic for every child and parent that comes into our system. It's critically important that we refer families to services at the appropriate time when a parent is most ready to engage."

Reinstein says Child Protective Services has enough money.

Bossack says, "We have money budgeted for the entire year, and we just have to be mindful in how we expend those dollars."

Local providers contend the division doesn't even have enough money to provide necessary parent visitation services.

Plus, they say the philosophy of waiting until the parent is ready ignores the needs of the child who has experienced the trauma of being removed from his or her home, and who wants to see the parent.

"Research has shown, over a multitude of years, that one major factor in the success of a child being able to be reunited with their parent after removal is ongoing visitation," says Karolzak.

"They need to see their parents and that keeps them from languishing, from being lost in the foster care system," says Aviva's Heslinga.

He says the longer children stay in foster care, the more difficult it is for them, and the higher the potential for high risk behaviors.

In addition to that, he says Arizona's foster care system is overwhelmed and foster care is expensive.

Helsinga says the ones who suffer will be the children.

Reinstein says she agrees parent visitation is very important.

And, though she contends CPS has enough money, she says, if more money is needed CPS will reevaluate.

Copyright 2012 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

Please Make Note

Please make note that I, Jessica Lynn Hepner the creator of What Every Parent Should Know, is not giving legal advice. I am not a lawyer. I am giving you knowledge via first hand experiences.

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Save A Life by Angie Kassabie

Save A Life by Angie Kassabie
I URGE ALL MY FRIENDS TO READ & SHARE THIS; YOU COULD SAVE A LOVED ONES LIFE BY KNOWING THIS SIMPLE INFORMATION!!! Stroke has a new indicator! They say if you forward this to ten people, you stand a chance of saving one life. Will you send this along? Blood Clots/Stroke - They Now Have a Fourth Indicator, the Tongue: During a BBQ, a woman stumbled and took a little fall - she assured everyone that she was fine (they offered to call paramedics) ...she said she had just tripped over a brick because of her new shoes. They got her cleaned up and got her a new plate of food. While she appeared a bit shaken up, Jane went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening. Jane's husband called later telling everyone that his wife had been taken to the hospital - (at 6:00 PM Jane passed away.) She had suffered a stroke at the BBQ. Had they known how to identify the signs of a stroke, perhaps Jane would be with us today. Some don't die. They end up in a helpless, hopeless condition instead. It only takes a minute to read this. A neurologist says that if he can get to a stroke victim within 3 hours he can totally reverse the effects of a stroke...totally. He said the trick was getting a stroke recognized, diagnosed, and then getting the patient medically cared for within 3 hours, which is tough. >>RECOGNIZING A STROKE<< Thank God for the sense to remember the '3' steps, STR. Read and Learn! Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke. Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions: S *Ask the individual to SMILE. T *Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently) (i.e. Chicken Soup) R *Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS. If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE of these tasks, call emergency number immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher. New Sign of a Stroke -------- Stick out Your Tongue NOTE: Another 'sign' of a stroke is this: Ask the person to 'stick' out his tongue. If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other that is also an indication of a stroke. A cardiologist says if everyone who gets this e-mail sends it to 10 people; you can bet that at least one life will be saved. I have done my part. Will you?

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