A quick rundown of Ohio child protection news this week
Weekly Update for January 7, 2019
Association Updates

Anti-human trafficking update
January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. In recognition of this topic, the National Child Traumatic Stress Network has compiled a list of resources about trafficking for caregivers, child welfare and juvenile justice professionals, and mental health providers. Also, here are a few events to help raise awareness this month:
Fostering Pathways to Success Conference: Save the date
Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, Ohio Reach, and JOURNEY to Successful Living are partnering this year to bring you another dynamic Fostering Pathways to Success Conference. 
The conference will be Wednesday, April 3 at the Columbus Convention Center. The morning keynote presenter will be LaToya Logan, a former foster youth and founder of Project L.I.F.T. Behavioral Health Services. Project L.I.F.T. is a nonprofit organization that targets the needs of transition-age males who are court involved and provides them with supportive services to assist them with community re-entry, educational, employment and housing successes. The luncheon presentation will be delivered by Andrea Boxill, Deputy Director of the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services; she heads the Governor’s Cabinet Opiate Action Team and will provide insight on how foster youth can survive through Ohio’s opiate epidemic.
Foster youth and young adults will get a chance to participate in a unique and interactive experience in the afternoon. Independence City will offer a fun yet challenging life simulation that will give participants a glimpse into real-life scenarios to help develop independent living skills, critical thinking, knowledge regarding access to resources, and postsecondary and career prep. In addition to the Independence City experience, we will also offer workshops for youth and adults. Caseworkers and adult supporters can earn continuing professional education credits while attending instructional and helpful learning sessions.

This conference is a statewide event for youth in foster care between the ages of 14 and 18 and young adults formerly in foster care ages 19 to 21. We also encourage Independent Living coordinators, ongoing case managers, agency administrators, workforce professionals and others working with foster youth to attend. The event and parking will be free to all participants. Registration will open soon, with information shared broadly before Feb. 1.

New recruitment website launches this week
This week, ODJFS is unveiling a marketing campaign intended to drive traffic to a new website for prospective and current foster and adoptive caregivers. The new site is in part the result of recommendations by the Foster Care Advisory Group in its May 2018 report . The messaging, "It takes 100% heart," and associated images are expected to be available soon for agency use and customization. PCSAO's Community Education Committee got a sneak peek at the website at its web meeting Jan. 4. Each agency should have designated a point person to receive inquiries from those who want to begin the process.

Ohio Children’s Budget Coalition meets director of Children’s Initiatives
In support of a holistic children’s agenda, 11 Ohio child-serving organizations, including PCSAO, have worked together to create child-focused recommendation for Governor-elect Mike DeWine and his new administration to consider in their first biennial budget for SFY 2020-2021. Leaders met with LeeAnne Cornyn (pictured below), DeWine’s director of Children’s Initiatives, on Dec. 20 to introduce the Ohio Children’s Budget Coalition and its priorities, and to learn more about Cornyn’s role. Learn more about our partners and recommendations for the new administration here.
Announcements and Resources

ODJFS seeks bids for Kinship and Adoption Navigator Program
ODJFS is seeking one qualified vendor experienced in performing in-depth program research, evaluation and statistical analysis. The responsibilities of the selected vendor will include providing project management services, engaging stakeholders in project management efforts, and providing oversight to a workgroup toward the effort of developing and operating Ohio’s Kinship and Adoption Navigator Program. Click here to view the RFP.

Standard authorization form filed
Under Ohio Revised Code §3798.10 , the Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) is required to develop a standard authorization form covering the use and disclosure of Protected Health Information (PHI) in alignment with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy of individually identifiable health information rule 45 C.F.R. §164.508 and 42 C.F.R. Part 2 regarding the confidentiality of substance use disorder patient records by a Part 2 program. The purpose of the standard authorization form is to improve care coordination for Ohio patients, including making it more efficient to share PHI in accordance with federal and state requirements and to streamline the integration of physical and behavioral health care in Ohio. While Ohio health care providers are not required to use the form, they are required to accept and act upon a properly executed form.
ODM has final-filed the Standard Authorization Rule, Ohio Administrative Code §5160-1-32.1 with an effective date of Jan. 3 (last week). The requirement for a properly executed form to be accepted is applicable 30 days after the effective date of the final filed rule, which is Saturday, Feb. 2. ODM has posted information on the Standard Authorization Form in the providers section of its website here . Scroll about halfway down the page and you will find the “Standard Authorization Form” information, which includes a link to a fillable PDF version of the form, instructions for completing the form, a fact sheet about the form and the e-mail address of StandardAuthForm@medicaid.ohio.gov where questions about the form may be submitted.
Child Protection in the News

A wave of Ohio children removed from their homes for neglect or abuse appears to have peaked, but the state's children's services system remains in crisis, a new report shows.

Eugene Tetrick, supervisor of the Foster Care and Adoption Unit at Lake County Department of Job and Family Services, knows that need is also a factor in the adoptive process. "Parenting children differently is another challenge which takes time to work through for both the children and their caregivers," he said.
Dec. 29 - Ohio 2nd in nation for opioid deaths - Columbus Dispatch 
Despite significant decreases in heroin and prescription opioid overdoses in the state, Ohio saw the second-highest number of opioid-involved overdose deaths per capita in 2017, according to a recent report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Methamphetamine’s addictive grip on Ohio and the nation has hit record levels.
Over the past two years, our team has focused on virtually every aspect of the opioid crisis. Tonight, we're going to focus on the children. Parents who become addicts leave their kids behind, which has created what the Public Children Services Association of Ohio (PCSAO) is calling a "severe crisis."

Ohio's homeless rate ticked upward slightly in 2018, representing the first increase in many years, according to an annual report issued this week by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Young children are among the fastest growing segments of Ohio's homeless population, with nearly 30 percent of all the individuals accessing homeless services in 2017 being minors.
Also: The U.S. Department of Housing And Urban Development, Office of Community Planning and Development's 2018 Annual Homeless Assessment Report (AHAR) to Congress, Part 1: Point-in-Time Estimates Of Homelessness, December 2018.
Robin Reese takes no matter lightly when it comes to children, not even a name. A surprising responsibility falls to Mrs. Reese as Lucas County Children Services executive director. Ohio law specifies the head of such an agency has 10 days to name an abandoned infant placed into its care.
Ohio's county children services agencies and private providers support an urgent Congressional fix to this uncertainty, such as draft legislation being circulated. If Congress does not act soon, thousands of children will be at risk of needlessly entering the foster care system, further crippling states like Ohio already struggling to cope with the opioid epidemic.
With Ohio consistently near last in the nation in state funding for child-protective services, the number of children entering foster care has exploded — another financial and human cost of the opioid epidemic, according to a new report.
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Thousands of Ohio children are spending their holidays in the care of relatives. While kinship caregivers can be a blessing for families in crisis, these caregivers often are burdened with unplanned expenses.

On CBS News’ ‘60 Minutes’ on Sunday, Governor-elect Mike DeWine said drug makers and distributors of powerful prescription painkillers knew their business tactics were hurting Ohioans.
As the Washington County Department of Jobs and Family Services merges with the county's Children Services, the plan is to audit at least once a year whether children placed in high-dollar care still need those treatment settings.

Upcoming Events

Jan. 9 | Board of Trustees Meeting
Jan. 10 | Rules Review Committee Meeting
Jan. 11 |Conference Planning Committee 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 .

UPP graduates seeking employment at a PCSA are listed on our website.
Quote of the Week
“We can find a new hope every new day and every New Year.” – Lailah Gifty Akita
Public Children Services Association of Ohio | 614-224-5802 | www.pcsao.org