A quick rundown of Ohio child protection news this week
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Weekly Update for January 29, 2018
Association Updates

Northeast District meets
Agency leaders from the Northeast District met in Richfield Jan. 22 to discuss the challenge of finding qualified caseworker job candidates, the status of union negotiations, and foster parent recruitment. Farewell to two outstanding leaders who are retiring this month: Jane Robertson of Lorain County Children Services and Nedra Petro of Stark County JFS! The district meets next Apr 23.

Southeast District meets
On Jan. 22, Northwoods provided a demonstration of the mobile application for child welfare called the “Co-Pilot” at the Southeast District meeting. In addition, updates were provided by ODJFS and PCSAO. The meeting concluded with the directors’ networking session. The district will meet next on Apr. 23.

Legislative Committee meets
On Jan. 22, PCSAO and ODJFS provided updates and the committee reviewed HB448, Sibling Visitation Rights and Adoption. The committee next meets on Feb. 26. For more information, contact Mary Wachtel, mary@pcsao.org .

Bridges Advisory Council meets
On Jan. 25, ODJFS reported that Bridges and Adoption Assistance Connections are on track to go live on Feb. 1. The Council heard updates from the Child and Family Health Collaborative, the entity that will manage the statewide Bridges program, and discussed marketing and messaging. To stay up to date, visit the Bridges website . Y ou may send questions to Bridges@jfs.ohio.gov .

Evaluation demonstrates success of youth-centered permanency roundtables
A four-year, 10-county pilot project of Casey Family Programs’ youth-centered permanency roundtables (PRT) model has culminated in an evaluation report that indicates solid outcomes for youth and improved agency culture. The evaluation, conducted by Steven R. Howe and Associates of Cincinnati, with support from Casey Family Programs, focused on PRT implementation in Athens, Butler, Clark, Fairfield, Guernsey, Mahoning, Montgomery, Stark, Summit and Trumbull counties. Read more .

Federal workforce grant kicks off in nine counties
Thanks to the leadership of ODJFS, Ohio is one of eight sites nationally to be awarded a federal grant through the Quality Improvement Center on Workforce Development (QIC-WD) and the Children’s Bureau. The project will evaluate county agency workforce challenges such as caseworker recruitment, retention and turnover, and will implement and evaluate a specific practice to improve outcomes. Nine PCSAs will participate: Champaign, Hamilton, Knox, Montgomery, Summit and Wayne will serve as experimental counties, implementing the practice, while Clark, Crawford and Trumbull will serve as comparison/control counties. The research project, which will continue through 2021, is led by Tequilla Washington in the Bureau of Standards and Practice Advancement at the Office of Families and Children and by three national experts on workforce, implementation and evaluation associated with the QIC-WD’s university and private partners. For periodic updates on the national project, subscribe to the QIC-WD email list at www.qic-wd.org or follow them on Twitter @QICWD.
Announcements and Resources

HOME Choice Conference
The HOME Choice Consumer Advisory Council (HCCAC) is proud to present its fifth annual HOME Choice Conference, "HOME Choice at 10: Proud Past, Bright Future." This year’s conference will celebrate the legacy of the program while sharing a vision for its future. The conference is Apr. 3. Breakfast and lunch will be provided and CEUs are available. Click here to register.

Opiate Conference save the date
OACBHA has announced the Ninth Annual Opiate Conference Jun. 11-12 in Columbus. As one of the largest opiate conferences in the United States, this year's conference will again provide attendees with the latest research on opiates as well as providing community resources to assist in curbing opiate use in Ohio. Keynote speakers will be announced in the coming weeks. Click here to learn more.

Calling all former foster youth
The 2018 Congressional Foster Youth Shadow Program application is now open! They are accepting submissions from former foster youth (18-30 years of age) across the United States with leadership potential and a drive for change. Individuals who are interested in using their voices to improve the foster care system for all youth and families are encouraged to apply. If this sounds like you or someone you know, please complete and/or share the application . The deadline to apply is Feb. 28. Find out more about the Shadow Day experience on their website or contact them:  shadowday@nfyi.org
Child Protection in the News

Jan. 25 - Local family pushes back against bill (Commentary) - Grand Lake Daily Standard
Working in tandem with a local state legislator and Ohio Right to Life, Brian Anderson said draft legislation has been crafted that he says would clearly define that a birth parent has the right to choose an adoption plan for his or her child, even if that child is in children services' custody. However, he added, "the opposition" beat the couple to the punch, introducing House Bill 283 that he asserts would prevent a family in a similar situation from adopting a child.

Summit County is joining a national research project to look for ways to reduce case worker burnout in the field of child welfare.

Jan. 24 - The Power of Domestic Adoption - National Review
It can take years to adopt a baby from another country, but thousands of American babies are in desperate need of a stable, loving home.

As crimes go, selling humans to other humans is difficult to track and measure. What we know, thanks to a handful of local researchers, is that Fairlawn and East Avenue in Akron top the list of secondary and tertiary locations in sex-trafficking advertisements posted on Backpage.com under Akron/Canton.

The research will take place over the next four years in Montgomery, Clark, Champaign, Hamilton, Knox, Summit, Trumbull and Wayne counties. It's being conducted by the Quality Improvement Center for Workforce Development, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Children's Bureau.

Ohio has been selected to participate in a national research project aimed at decreasing workforce turnover at child welfare agencies. Turnover at child welfare agencies is typically up to six times the national average turnover rate for all industries, according to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.

Another record number of people – about 117 – died in Trumbull County in 2017 from accidental drug overdoses, but three state legislators were asked Monday to also remember the children negatively affected by the opiate crisis.

A Fairfield County Juvenile Court campaign to enlist adults to mentor boys and girls on court probation is rolling out into the community, as officials work to expand the number of volunteers willing to work with young people.
Upcoming Events

Feb. 1 | Rules Review Committee Meeting
Feb. 2 | Community Education Committee Meeting
Feb. 7 | Board of Trustees Meeting

Employment Opportunities

Looking for a career in child protection? Or a new position to challenge yourself? Check out the latest job openings in child protection.

Quote of the Week

"I continue to believe that if children are given the necessary tools to succeed, they will succeed beyond their wildest dreams!" 
 — David Vitter
Public Children Services Association of Ohio | 614-224-5802 | www.pcsao.org