Office of the Family and Children's Ombuds: 2019 Annual Report. Washington State Office of the Family and Children's Ombuds.
Washington State Office of the Family and Children's Ombudsman.
State Resource Technical Report
Washington State Office of the Family and Children's Ombudsman
6720 Fort Dent Way, Suite 240 Mail Stop TT-99
Tukwila, WA 98188
Tel: 800-571-7321 206-439-3870
This report provides an account of the Washington State Office of the Family and Children's Ombuds' (OFCO) activities from September 1, 2018 to August 31, 2019 and provides recommendations to improve the quality of State services for children and families. During this reporting period, OFCO received 932 complaints and completed 928 investigations regarding 1,398 children. As in past years, the separation and reunification of families is the most frequently identified issue in complaints. Complaints regarding child safety have decreased over the past several years, while there has been an increase in complaints about agency conduct and services. Following a review of the duties and responsibilities of the Ombuds, systemic issues that are impacting services are discussed, including placement resources are ill equipped to meet the needs of all children and youth in State care; legislation prohibits use of detention for foster children missing from placement; and the high volume of calls to Child Protective Services Intake can leave children at risk. Recommendations are made for addressing each of the issues. The second section provides information on the inquiries and complaints received by OFCO, and the third section of the report explains actions take to investigate the complaints and presents the OFCO’s adverse findings. It is reported that in In 2019, OFCO made 47 adverse findings in a total of 28 complaint investigations. Appendices include charts showing complaints investigated by region and office, adverse findings by office, and summaries of OFCO’s adverse findings. 6 tables and 30 references.
Washington; ombudspersons; state programs; statistics; policy formation; child protective services; child welfare services; family reunification; child safety; separation; juvenile delinquency; program evaluation