Created by Governor Ted Kulongoski in 2004 and put into statute by the Oregon legislature in 2007, the public reports created by the Critical Incident Review Team (CIRT) are an important and unique tool to help protect Oregon's children from abuse and neglect and to prevent child fatalities. This process was most recently changed by Senate Bill 832 (amends ORS 419b.024) which became fully operative on October 1, 2019.
The DHS Critical Incident Review Team (CIRT) conducts extensive investigations into child deaths when the victim, their siblings or other child living in the household have had previous interactions with Child Welfare within 12 months of the fatality. The CIRT is focused on identifying whether any systemic issues contributed to the fatality and if so, how they can be addressed and corrected to minimize and prevent future fatalities. When a critical incident is reviewed, the team seeks to understand the circumstances surrounding the death of the child, as well as the history of the family, the community and the child welfare and other family-serving systems.