Department of Human Services 2013-2015 Budget Information
Child Welfare Program
Our strategies depend on creating an environment that is safe for children who are most vulnerable based on family, social and economic issues. We focused our initiatives toward minimizing risk by transforming our interventions to better meet the challenges families are facing. This will enhance our ability to engage individuals who are less able to care for themselves, their families and communities. This creates a stronger continuum of efforts to prevent abuse and neglect, and efforts to hold perpetrators of that abuse and neglect accountable.
Our budget proposal seeks to ensure that Oregonians are safer in the future than they are today by focusing on strategies that have proven to result in the greatest reduction in overall risk. We aim to achieve the following outcomes:
- A better array of interventions with community-based supports for families before, during and after involvement with the Child Welfare system, including strategies to safely and equitably reduce the number of children who experience foster care. This includes available services and supports so children are not at risk for re-entry into foster care and families can be stabilized.
- Improved services for children and families of color, targeting strategies to address issues such as overrepresentation in foster care, underrepresentation in family support and family preservation services, and potential disparities in decision-making.
- A clear focus on protective strategies for children who are in care in Oregon.
We want to break the cycle that causes harm to individuals and drives Oregonians into expensive state-sponsored programs. Our strategies focus on helping ensure that Oregonians are safer in the future than they are today by increasing resources proven to result in the greatest reduction in overall risk. Though those strategies require some upfront, taxpayer investment, we are committed to being accountable for needed service delivery innovations and performance metrics focused on improvements in the lives of those we serve and long-term reductions in the demand for state services. We know that abuse and neglect will never totally be eliminated, but we believe that Oregon should be a place where our children are safe, and we believe our budget proposal will improve the state’s ability to work with individuals and communities to achieve that goal, while reducing the demand for costly state services in the future.