In March 2018, Gov. Kate Brown requested a monthly progress report on Child Welfare. In April 2019, the Governor issued Executive Order No. 19-03 which created a Child Welfare Oversight Board to assist her in making and implementing recommendations to improve Oregon’s system for supporting safe children and thriving families. The report is published monthly and was revised in June 2020 to share progress on the directives from the Governor and the Child Welfare Oversight Board.
This Month in Child Welfare
In January, we celebrated the official start of implementation of the Oregon Indian Child Welfare Act (ORICWA). ORICWA implementation goals center around relationships, workforce development, data, improvement, culture and equity. Child Welfare Division collaboration with Tribal Nations is key in ensuring tribal children and families are served equitably and in a culturally appropriate way.
Prevention continues to be our focus. This includes creating infrastructure for the Family Preservation and Prevention Program, establishing an effective respite care program, continual reduction of the use of temporary lodging, and serving Oregon’s children and families in-state. We know none of this work can be done successfully without engaging and promoting our dedicated staff. Therefore, we have and will continue to prioritize training, workforce development and equity throughout all levels of the Child Welfare Division.
This year, we plan to actively implement strategies that reflect this growth in community support. As the Child Welfare Division operationalizes the Vision for Transformation, we will be finding ways to share information about strategies, implementation, and provide avenues for input and feedback.
Rebecca Jones Gaston, MSW
Director, Oregon Child Welfare