A quick rundown of Ohio child protection news this week
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Weekly Update for March 12, 2018
Association Updates

Foster Care Advisory Group begins to finalize recommendations
ODJFS Director Cynthia Dungey kicked off what was initially to be the penultimate meeting of the Foster Care Advisory Group on Mar. 7, but the group decided to schedule another meeting closer to the May 1 submission deadline for the final report to allow enough time to fully vet the recommendations. Formal recommendations range from certification and training hour changes and new caregiver supports to enhanced recruitment and retention strategies, including both no- or low-cost changes and those requiring an investment by the legislature. The final meetings will be Apr. 4 and 18.

Opioid policy guide now available
Thanks to a knowledgeable group of agency directors and human resources managers, PCSAO is pleased to present “Ensuring the Safety of Children Services Staff in the Era of Opioids,” a guideline on writing agency policy around caseworker safety given possible exposure to opioids. A text version of the guide was released late last year, but the final publication has now been published. The guide includes links to sample agency policies and questions to consider if developing agency policies. It is also featured on the PCSAO website on the caseworker safety page , along with useful links.

HOPE parent partner training resource
A great resource from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) was shared at a meeting recently. In two pages, it describes what peer support is, what parent support providers do and the benefits of parent support services. This could be an excellent handout for beginning discussions with decision makers and staff for anyone interested in peer support.
Announcements and Resources

Medical marijuana policy symposium
To help employers get ready for the medical marijuana law in Ohio, which will be in effect by Sep. 8, the Ohio Association of County Behavioral Health Authorities will be hosting “Marijuana Symposium: Medical Marijuana and the Workplace,” Apr. 25 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Xenos Christian Fellowship, 1394 Community Park Drive, Columbus. The symposium will be focused on assisting employers, managers, workplace safety monitors and others with questions pertaining to the rollout of medical marijuana later this year. Subjects covered will include impacts on drug-free workplace policies, workforce readiness, workplace safety and productivity, and discrimination concerns. Registration for the event will be $100 per person. Lunch and beverages will be provided. To register for the event, click here . If you have any questions, contact Cheri Walter at cwalter@oacbha.org or Tony Coder at tcoder@oacbha.org .

New NCTSN LGBTQ youth video for foster and resource parents
Learn about how to provide foster and resource parents caring for LGBTQ youth with relevant information regarding the strengths, needs and risk factors for such youth and how to create safe and affirming spaces for such youth. Click here for the video. 

Head Start can offer respite, support to caregivers
Head Start centers across Ohio are eager to assist PCSAs in combating the opioid epidemic by offering educational support to children in foster and kinship care while at the same time offering caregivers a break. Read more .

Attorney General’s Ideas for Our Future Conference
Mark your calendar for the fifth installment of the “Ideas” conference series focusing on the impacts of the opioid epidemic in Ohio. Ideas for Our Future will address the need to create trauma-informed communities for children impacted by the opioid epidemic. Attendees will hear from experts in the medical field on the effects that early childhood trauma, or Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), can have on long-term health and life outcomes. Attendees will also hear from professionals in a variety of settings who are working to reduce and reverse the effects of ACEs. Individuals who work with children are highly encouraged to attend, including educators, medical professionals, law enforcement, children services workers, attorneys, parents, and caregivers. For more information and to register, click here .
Child Protection in the News

Javon and four other children, who were born while their mothers were incarcerated, are being raised by their moms in Ohio's prison nursery, a facility that sits less than 30 feet from the razor wire that circles the Ohio Reformatory for Women.

Mar. 3 - Parenting reboot: Crisis is calling grandparents to action (Includes video) - Canton Repository
Some 124,000 children in Ohio live with a relative with no parent present, according to Grandfamilies.org, a national collaboration between the American Bar Association, Generations United and Casey Family Programs. Kinship caregivers face emotional and financial burdens but get a fraction of the financial help given to foster parents. In Carroll County and other rural communities, a lack of nearby counseling services, daycare providers and medical clinics makes the task more challenging.

Child-welfare advocates have tried to explain to the public the increasing need for foster parents to provide homes for children in agency custody whose parents are addicted to opiates.
Upcoming Events

Mar. 13 | Executive Membership Meeting
Mar. 19 | Legislative Committee Meeting
Mar. 20 | Ohio START Steering Committee Meeting
Mar. 20 | Ohio START Southern Consortium

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

"If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales." 
 — Albert Einstein
Public Children Services Association of Ohio | 614-224-5802 | www.pcsao.org