A quick rundown of Ohio child protection news this week
Weekly Update for May 4, 2020
Association Updates

Coronavirus updates
Gov. Mike DeWine continued efforts to limit the spread of coronavirus and to prepare the state for it. This week he announced details of his Responsible Restart Ohio plan:
  • Businesses in manufacturing, distribution, and construction may open beginning on May 4.
  • General offices may also reopen. Companies that have found out people can be efficient at home should continue the practice. 
  • To be open, companies must have protocols on face coverings (both employees and customers), evaluating health of employees each day, hand washing and social distancing, and cleaning of surfaces.
  • Beginning May 12, consumer retail and services may reopen. Employees and must cover their faces and customers are advised to do so.
  • Businesses that have a positive COVID-19 case must report it to the local health department so that tracing can occur.
  • A stay-safe-at-home order was issued through May 29.
The governor also announced his plans for increased testing and contact tracing:
  • Manufacturers in Ohio can make both reagent and swabs now. This week Ohio will be able to test 7,200 a day. As production ramps up, Ohio will increase its testing capacity each week until it reaches 27,000 per day.
  • Contact tracing goes along with testing. There is nothing new about it except the scale. Right now Ohio has 685 public health workers trained to do this. The governor proposed three tiers of testing staff.
  • Tier 1 includes 900 Intermittent volunteers.
  • Tier 2 includes funding to support locally hired workers.
  • Tier 3 includes a deployable state pool of workers to support surges in cases, such as at a nursing home or hot spot.

PCSAO, along with the Ohio Job and Family Services Directors’ Association (OJFSDA), the Ohio Child Support Enforcement Agencies Directors’ Association (OCDA) and the County Commissioners Association of Ohio (CCAO), continues to follow the situation closely and interact with state officials to ensure that county agencies are well represented and receive clear information. The best place to find information is  coronavirus.ohio.gov  . The Ohio Department of Health hotline, 1-833-4ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634), is open 9 a.m.-8 p.m. daily. The governor holds press conferences daily at 2 p.m. on  www.ohiochannel.org.

Call for PCSAO 2020 conference presenters extended to May 15
We need your knowledge and expertise! The call for presenters for our 35th Annual PCSAO Conference, scheduled for Sept. 16-18, has been extended to May 15. The conference theme is “Partners in Progress” to reflect the transformation taking place in the child protection system. The audience consists of children services professionals: directors, administrators, caseworkers, supervisors, attorneys, students and advocates. Submissions are due May 15 by 5 p.m.  Submit your proposal here . Note that you can download a preview of the entire application at the bottom of the submission link. You can check the  PCSAO Conference webpage   for updates.

Southeast District meets
PCSAO’s Southeast District met by conference call April 27 to provide county updates related to the pandemic. While this was a regularly scheduled district meeting, members are planning a check-in call approximately every three weeks to share resources.
Rules Updates

Pre-clearance: As of May 1, there are no children services-related rules in pre-clearance.

Clearance: The following rules have a deadline of May 14 for comments:
  • Rule 5101:2-9-42 - Qualified residential treatment program. This new rule sets forth the definitions, timeframes and requirements for residential facilities to become qualified residential treatment programs (QRTPs). 
  • Rule 5101:2-40-10 - Ohio Kinship and Adoption navigator. This new rule provides eligibility and program information about Ohio’s new adoption and kinship navigator program (OhioKAN), which has been developed in response to the Family First Act and requirements in sections 5101.851 through 5101.856 of the Ohio Revised Code. This rule describes navigation services that are available to kinship caregivers and families and post-adoptive parents and families.
Filed with JCARR: The following rule was refiled on April 28:
The following rules from Chapter 5101:2-5 (Child Services Agency Licensing) were refiled on April 30. Amendments are due to the five-year review process and/or recent legislative changes, primarily the passage of the Family First Act.
  • Rule 5101:2-5-09.1 - Criminal records check required for certain prospective employees and certified foster caregivers.
  • Rule 5101:2-5-20 - Initial application and completion of the foster care home study.
  • Rule 5101:2-5-24 - Foster home recertifications.
Announcements and Resources

F oster Care Month begins
Foster Care Month is here! It's a time to recognize that we each can play a part in enhancing the lives of children and youth in foster care. Find resources on promoting Foster Care Month here . In addition, the Ohio Youth Advisory Board is sharing two videos to encourage people to foster teens and young adults. Marissa Alcorn and her chosen family share how foster care brought them together . Emancipated foster youth Jewell Harris shares her inspiring story and encourages people to care for teens . Find more information on the Ohio Youth Advisory Board here .

NCWWI offers webinar on coaching remotely May 5 and 8
The National Child Welfare Workforce Institute (NCWWI) is offering a webinar on “Supporting the Virtual Workforce: Coaching Remotely” May 5 and 8 from 3-4:15 p.m. Coaching in the child welfare workforce often happens face-to-face or in context of daily work activities. With the shift to virtual work, face-to-face contact may have been curtailed but connecting and supporting growth does not need to stop. This session will explore what stays the same and what adjustments must be made when coaching remotely.  Register here .

Groundwork Ohio offers May 7 webinar on child and family mental health
Groundwork Ohio is offering a webinar on “Supporting Children and Family Mental Health During Coronavirus” at 1 p.m. on May 7. This webinar is targeted toward parents, caregivers, providers and community members who are seeking guidance and tools for families to support young children. Participants will hear from experts on communicating with young children, reducing stress and anxiety for both children and caregivers, creating structure and routines, and staying connected from home. Register here .

Supreme Court of Ohio offers resources on navigating dependency cases
The Supreme Court of Ohio offered a webinar April 23 on "Navigating Dependency Cases During the COVID-19 Crisis." You can view the webinar and download the slides and resources on the Juvenile Courts section of the Supreme Court of Ohio Coronavirus page .

NASW Ohio offers ethics webinar on technology
National Association of Social Workers Ohio is offering a recording of its recent webinar "Ethics of Technology." More people than ever before are using the Internet to connect to one another, which poses benefits and challenges to those who work in the health and human services profession. Learn about the ethical implications of social media and new technologies on practice. Participants will learn the website-specific risks, benefits, and strategies to avoid ethical violations. Watch it here .

Check out new online learning opportunities from OCWTP
The Ohio Child Welfare Training Program has created a user-friendly distance-learning website with a variety of opportunities for caseworkers, supervisors, assessors, foster parents, adoptive parents and trainers.
Child Protection in the News

April 27 - Children’s Services in need of donations - Cambridge Daily Jeffersonian
Although Guernsey County Children’s Services has the capability to work remotely with a web-based system, staff still come in and out of the office as needed to meet with families.

The state of Ohio will provide funding to extend foster care for children set to turn 18 amid the coronavirus pandemic, and to assist young adults in the Bridges transition program, Gov. Mike DeWine announced Friday.

He describes it like it was a scene out of Criminal Minds: Child Protective Services stormed the house he lived in with his biological mother, “step father,” and nine siblings. All 10 kids were rounded up for questioning to the nth degree, of which they were taught to answer none.

The Division of Children and Family Services (DCFS) has launched a program to match donors with at-risk families who are struggling to meet basic needs during the coronavirus pandemic. "If you're a family that was already struggling with financial hardships or other circumstances before the pandemic, COVID-19 has probably made it even harder to provide even some basic needs for your children," said County Executive Armond Budish.

“We depend on providers, day cares, schools, people in the community to keep children safe and to be our eyes on the children," Susan Walther, director of Warren County Children Services, said.

April 23 - Gallia Children Services Board to dissolve - Gallipolis Daily Tribune
The Gallia County Children Services Board (GCCSB) met April 20 and decided to soon dissolve and cease its governance and oversight of the Gallia County Children Services Agency.
Upcoming Events

May 6 | Board of Trustees Meeting
May 8 | Community Education Committee Meeting
May 8 | Conference Planning Committee Meeting
May 11 | Rules Review Committee Meeting

Note: Most if not all meetings will be held via web meeting or teleconference.

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 .
Public Children Services Association of Ohio | 614-224-5802 | www.pcsao.org