A quick rundown of Ohio child protection news this week
Weekly Update for June 1, 2020
Association Updates

Coronavirus updates
Gov. Mike DeWine and his administration continued his Responsible Restart Ohio efforts.
  • Gov. DeWine announced the formation of new Congregate Care Unified Response Teams to test residents and staff members in Ohio's nursing homes. Ohio National Guard members with medical training will begin testing residents and staff in nursing homes this week.
  • Testing will be conducted in facilities where residents or workers have confirmed or assumed positive cases. Testing will be conducted on all staff, and the testing of residents will be based on a clinical strategy that targets those who have likely been exposed to COVID-19. 
  • In addition, the Congregate Care Unified Response Teams will begin the testing of all residents and staff members in the state’s eight developmental centers to try to limit the spread of COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 signage and health screening questions for businesses and other organizations are available on the coronavirus website.
  • Gov. DeWine announced that the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy has clarified rules that allow pharmacists to order and administer tests for COVID-19. To help Ohioans find testing locations, a map has been added to coronavirus.ohio.gov that lists COVID-19 testing centers in Ohio.
  • Ohio has utilized COVID-19 testing priorities to manage limited testing capacity. The governor announced that Ohio has modified these groups this week. Testing must be first available to individuals described in Priority Groups 1, 2 and 3, but Ohio is expanding to allow partners and communities to test Ohioans who are not in the priority groups to reduce the spread of the virus.
  • Lt. Gov. Jon Husted announced that 150 Ohio companies have been approved for TechCred funding, which will help them upskill their current and incoming workforce to meet the needs of the tech-focused economy. Examples of these credentials and training providers can be found at TechCred.Ohio.gov.
PCSAO continues to follow the COVID-19 situation closely and interact with state officials and community partners to ensure that county agencies are well represented and receive clear information. For the latest information from the state, visit the  coronavirus.ohio.gov page.

Foster alums outline reforms
ACTION Ohio provided a platform for former foster youth to outline changes they would like to see to the foster care system in a call May 29. More than 60 state officials, advocacy organizations, and alums participated in the call. Recommendations included extending the governor’s moratorium on youth emancipating from care or Bridges, expanding Chafee benefits for independent living, creating an ombudsman for youth in care at the Attorney General’s Office, increasing state oversight of residential facilities, and mandating independent living training for caseworkers and caregivers. 
PCSAO Conference 2020

Save the date!
While we can't hold our annual meeting in-person this year, PCSAO is committed to offering meaningful continuing education to our members. We are planning to move our conference to a virtual format for two days, Sept. 16-17. Mark your calendar and look for more details this summer!

Nominate youth, families, staff for annual awards
Each year, PCSAO recognizes and celebrates the achievements of foster youth, families, and agency staff. The 2020 PCSAO award winners will be announced during the 2020 annual conference online Sept. 16-17. Nominations must be submitted by June 30. Each submission must include the nomination form and attachments. You may also include supporting materials.

To nominate a youth for Rising Up and Moving On , or a family for Family of the Year , click here.
To nominate a children services professional for Child Protection Worker, Child Protection Support Staff or Child Protection Supervisor of the Year , click here .
Rules Updates

Pre-clearance: The following rule is open for comments until June 2:
Clearance: As of May 29, there are no children services-related rules in clearance.

Filed with JCARR: The following rule was revise-filed on May 18 with a hearing date of June 16:
Announcements and Resources

CEBC offers webinar on race, equity June 15
The California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare is offering a webinar on “Race and Equity in Child and Family Serving Systems” from 1-2 p.m. on June 15. It will focus on ways employees can cultivate equity and inclusion to better serve children and families. The goal of the webinar is that employees be able to do the following:
  • Define equity and inclusion in the workplace.
  • Explain relationships between equity and inclusion in the workplace.
  • Describe ways to engage in affirming interactions with one another.
  • Develop and implement an individual action plan for applying lessons learned or remembered.

Casey Family Programs offers guidance on identifying victims of sex trafficking
Casey Family Programs released an issue brief on child protection and the commercial sexual exploitation of children. PCSAO Human Trafficking Coordinator Bhumika Patel is quoted in the brief. Read it here.  

NCWWI webinar series and practice recommendations available
In April and May, the National Child Welfare Workforce Institute hosted a six-part series for child welfare colleagues to exchange ideas, innovations, and resources for supporting a virtual workforce. NCWWI facilitators helped participants share what they are learning about this new environment and captured best practices from around the country. You can view them here . Practice recommendations from participants of the Virtual Supervision session are also available and are a valuable resource. View them here .

Capacity Building Center for States offers planning resources for agencies
The Capacity Building Center for States has collected online resources designed to help child welfare agencies plan for the future and meet the needs of a remote workplace. They include material on strategic planning , virtual meetings in child welfare and change and implementation in practice.
Child Protection in the News

May 23 - Online Adoptions May Be Here to Stay - Spectrum News 1
Four-year-old Thomas might be too young to know it yet, but he just made history. He's one of the first group of kids in Hamilton County to be officially adopted on a secured site online.

Children growing up in the foster care system have experienced vast amounts of disruption to their lives. They have long needed more extensive mental health, educational and medical support than many communities can provide. 

Judge Ralph Winkler's first in-house adoption in over nine weeks was conducted Tuesday at the Hamilton County Probate Court, officials said. Paityn's adoption marks the court's first in-house adoption since March 19, the release states. Restrictions due to COVID-19 led the court to perform many Zoom adoptions over the last two months. Moving forward, officials said families will have the flexibility to decide if they would like to have a Zoom or in-person adoption.
Profiles of Hope and Courage: Children Services in the Era of COVID-19
Sarah: A constant advocate for recovery
Sarah is a family peer mentor with the Ohio START program. Family peer mentors are individuals with personal experience with substance use disorder, recovery, and the children services system. They connect with families, provide accountability and support, and serve as role models. 

PCSAO is collecting stories from the front lines of child protection to raise awareness of the challenges our children services professionals, and the families they serve, are facing during this pandemic. Despite all the changes in their daily lives, they remain hopeful and courageous.
Upcoming Events

June 3 | Board of Trustees Meeting
June 4 | Rules Review Committee Meeting
June 5 | Community Education Committee Meeting
June 12 | Conference Planning Committee Meeting

Note: Meetings will be held via web meeting or teleconference for the foreseeable future.

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 .

Also, check out recent graduates of the University Partnership Program who are trained and ready to be hired by public agencies.
Public Children Services Association of Ohio | 614-224-5802 | www.pcsao.org