As part of its responsibility to help children remain safe at all points during the investigation of a referral, the Butte County CWS agency should perform statutorily required background checks and inspections before allowing children to be placed in a home.
The Butte County - Emergency Relative/NRFEM Placement Checklist, revised May 27, 2014, was submitted as part of the 60 Day Audit Response. Training was provided at the October 2, 2014 Program Meeting.
Due to new state requirements regarding the CFSR Review Process (implemented following the Audit), Butte County adjusted staffing requirements for the new CQI Unit. Two new QA Staff positions were authorized by the Butte County Board of Supervisors on March 23, 2015, and the hiring process has been initiated. It is anticipated that full staffing for the CQI Unit will be in place by June 15, 2015. The QA Policy and Procedure (No. CSD-14-21) has been completed and approved, effective April 1, 2015, and training of supervisory staff has been completed. Policy will be submitted.
The Butte County - Emergency Relative/NRFEM Placement Checklist, was revised 5-27-14, and submitted as part of the 60 Day Audit Response.
Training regarding the changes to the form was provided at the October 2, 2014 Program Meeting and the updated Investigations Policy and Procedure (No. CSD-14-20).
A new Quality Assurance Policy and Procedure, and an update to the Emergency Relative Placements Policy are under development, which will also address these issues. These policies will be completed by January 31, 2015.
Consistent with department policy, the Butte County Emergency Relative/NRFEM Placement Checklist, was revised 5-27-14. This Checklist provides clear instruction regarding requirements for background checks and is used when a social worker is allowing a child to be placed in the home.
The revised Emergency Relative/NRFEM Placement Checklist has been submitted as part of this report.
We agree that the updated checklist and associated policies provide clear instructions that background checks and inspections should be conducted prior to placement. The checklist for emergency placements also requires supervisor and program manager review.
The one absent aspect of assurance that this policy is being followed is for background checks and inspections to be included in the department's quality assurance reviews. The department director informed us that they will work on this and will report back in their six-month response.
Agency responses received are posted verbatim.