Our View: Is the job being done?
Is everyone doing what they are supposed to?
That is the question when it comes to issues facing the Moffat County Department of Social Child Protection.
On June 7, the Craig Daily Press published an editorial stating the problems start in the leadership of the organization, whether that be with the Moffat County Board of County County Commsioners or the director of the Moffat County Social Services.
It is not the responsibility of the caseworkers, who have very thankless jobs. The editorial board felt the lack of response from the county commissioners and the director of Social Services was deafening.
That opinion has not changed.
The editorial board met with County Commissioner Tom Gray on Monday and is thankful for the progress that was made from the commissioners’ standpoint.
The commissioners have met with all of the staff at Social Services. From that meeting, they were able to identify a few solutions that they immediately implemented.
Tom Gray has taken the responsibility of being personally involved in the child protection team’s monthly strategic planning meeting.
The commissioners now also insist Marie Peer, director of the MCDSS, also be in attendance at each of the team’s weekly meetings, which includes individuals from many agencies in Moffat County who are involved in the many aspects of child protection.
In order to streamline the process, they immediately instituted an intake log, which began June 1, 2007. This log will record each and every referral made to the department regarding each alleged instance of abuse.
They have refocused the child protection team, re-trained participants to understand the importance of their participation and the process that is involved.
When it was noted that every staff member of MCDSS needed to attend Child Safety Training, the commissioners insisted it happen. And it did.
Some of these items had been instituted prior to the editorial board’s opinion appearing in the Saturday Morning Press, but the commissioners had failed to communicate this to the community.
The problems at the department do start with the leadership, and it is apparent by their actions that the commissioners are taking this very seriously. They have shown they are trying everything they can think of to ensure the safety of our community’s children. We applaud them for that.
The editorial board is further convinced that any relationship-building Peer can do with other organizations involved in the same fight for safety would be very beneficial to the success of the department, as well.
Gray, in a summary of issues and solutions provided to the editorial board, said, “Social Services have their part to do and do well. There are many answers the whole community needs to work together to solve.”
The editorial board agrees – as corny as it may sound – that “it takes a village to raise a child.” That includes the average resident, school teachers, police officers – everyone in our community has their part in raising the children in our community.
We all have a lot riding on the future of our community, and that future is our children. Let’s all do our part, and do it well.
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