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LORAIN COUNTY CHILDREN SERVICES
STEPS TO ACCESS SERVICES/ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Making a Report of Suspected Abuse or Neglect: When you are concerned that a child or children you know or service are being abused or neglected or are at risk of being abused and neglected, you are mandated to make a report to Lorain County Children Services. You do not need to have proof that abuse or neglect has occurred. A suspicion based on an observation or a statement made to you by a child or family member is sufficient.
You can make a report by calling LCCS at 329-5340 and asking the receptionist to direct your call to an Intake Referral Specialist. If you access our hot-line, an answering service worker will receive your call and contact the agency Caseworker on-call. At this point, the On-Call Caseworker is given your number so that he or she may call you and take your report.
When making a report, it is helpful if you are able to provide as much information as possible about the child and the family about whom you are calling. The following information helps us to more accurately prioritize and more quickly respond to your reports.
As mandated reporters, you are entitled to information as to whether a report you have made is taken for investigation and whether the family’s case is closed upon the completion of investigation or assigned for protective services. You should give the Referral Specialist your address and telephone number so that this information can be relayed to you.
LIST OF SERVICES OFFERED
To determine whether or not abuse or neglect can be substantiated during an investigation, an initial Safety Assessment is completed to ascertain imminent risk of serious harm to the child and a Family Assessment is conducted, during which all family members are interviewed. Through use of our Safety and Family Assessment, an over-all level of risk of future abuse and neglect is determined. At times, a family’s case may be closed upon completion of investigation even when abuse or neglect has been substantiated. However, at times, a family’s case is assigned for protective services despite the fact that we have found no evidence of prior abuse or neglect. The decision as to whether a child or family is in need of our services is based on a determination of over-all risk of future abuse and neglect.
CRITERIA USED TO CLOSE CASES
When working with a family, LCCS focuses its efforts on permanency, well-being, and alleviating risk that the children in the family will again experience abuse or neglect.
LCCS services are voluntary in situations in which abuse or neglect has been identified as a concern, risk of future abuse or neglect is low, and the family has agreed to work with LCCS. When voluntary clients demonstrate unwillingness or inability to benefit from LCCS services and there is no imminent risk of harm to the child, we close the family’s case.
LCCS services become involuntary in cases in which children are at moderate to high risk of future abuse or neglect and the family demonstrates an unwillingness or inability to utilize our services. LCCS may ask the Court to order families to work with LCCS while the children remain in the home. LCCS may also ask the Court to order the family to work with LCCS while the children are safe in the care of a relative, friend, or foster home. If parents continue to show an inability to work with LCCS to reduce risk of future abuse or neglect, LCCS plans an alternative permanent living arrangement for the child and closes the case once the child is secure in legal, permanent placement. When parents have demonstrated that they have learned and are utilizing skills and habits that greatly reduce risk of future abuse or neglect of the children, LCCS is able to reunify the children with their parents. If the family demonstrates an ability to maintain use of newly learned skills or lifestyle changes that reduced risk of future abuse and neglect, LCCS is able to close the family’s case.
Case Closure, like case opening, is based on overall risk of future abuse or neglect.
Name: Position: Phone: Email Address:
Dr. Gary Crow Executive Director 329-5333 firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeannie Weisbrod Deputy Executive Director 329-5318 Jeannieweisbrod@childrenservices.org
Sue Nowlin Director of Social Services, 329-5339 email@example.com
Sandra Hamilton Director of Social Services, 329-5331 firstname.lastname@example.org
Joseph Carver Director of Fiscal Affairs 329-5677 email@example.com
Steve Chozinski Ombudsman 329-5316 firstname.lastname@example.org
Kristen Fox Berki Direct Services Manager 329-5692 email@example.com
Jane Robertson Family Based Care Manager 329-5317 firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Marple Continuous Quality 329-5321 email@example.com
Brenda Alexander Administrative Services 329-5646 firstname.lastname@example.org
Don Starett Human Resources Manager 329-5325 email@example.com
Patti Jo Burtnett Public Information Manager 329-5172 firstname.lastname@example.org
Direct Services Supervisory Staff