PA Family Support Alliance Expands Training in Residential Care Settings to Better Protect Children
Harrisburg, PA – The new course, titled “Reporting Requirements for Children Served in Residential Care Facilities,” focuses on requirements in the state Child Protective Services Law (CPSL) related to reporting suspected child abuse in the congregate care setting.
Harrisburg, PA – Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance (PFSA), the state leader in child abuse prevention is piloting a new training curriculum that’s designed to better protect children living in residential care settings. The new course, titled “Reporting Requirements for Children Served in Residential Care Facilities,” focuses on requirements in the state Child Protective Services Law (CPSL) related to reporting suspected child abuse in the congregate care setting. This curriculum was developed specifically to address the unique issues faced by staff members who work in settings like managed care organizations, juvenile detention centers, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services Office of Children, Youth, and Families (ChildLine, Bureau of Juvenile Services, and regional offices), and other investigating agencies.
“This new training expands upon our mandated reporter training curriculum and will help to ensure that some of the most vulnerable children in the Commonwealth — those living in group settings — are protected from abuse and neglect,” said Angela M. Liddle, MPA, PFSA president and CEO. “We applaud OCYF for making additional training available for agencies that provide residential treatment programs for children. The issues and situations faced by direct line staff and management in these programs have been very challenging. We’ve had a strong team approach from the first workgroup meeting through to curriculum development. We look forward to presenting the training.”
The expanded training clarifies the often-blurred lines of recordable incidents, reportable incidents, and reporting suspected child abuse to ensure incidents and disclosures are documented and reported accurately and in a timely manner as required under the CPSL.
“When we looked at the landscape of training options for professionals and volunteers in child welfare in the state, we could see a clear need for more focused training for individuals who work in congregate care settings,” noted Haven Evans, PFSA’s director of training. “Professionals who complete this training will be at the forefront of knowing when to report suspected child abuse to keep kids safe.”
Agencies chosen for the 16 pilot sites were members of a workgroup that the Office of Children, Youth and Families (OCYF) assembled in 2018 to discuss the issues and make recommendations on this topic. PFSA hopes to expand the training curriculum statewide to any agencies that would need it during the second half of this year.
PILOT SITES FOR NEW TRAINING CURRICULUM:
Centre County – Centre Co. Youth Center
Clinton County – Bald Eagle Boys Camp
Lancaster County – Lancaster Co. Youth Intervention Center
Adams County – Hoffman Homes
Northampton County – Children’s Home of Easton
Lehigh County – KidsPeace
Butler County – Mid-Atlantic Youth Services
Cumberland County – United Methodist Home for Children
Westmoreland County – Alternative Living Solutions
Crawford County – Bethesda Children’s Home
Westmoreland County – Adelphoi Village
Allegheny County – Bradley Center
Carbon & Chester County – Concern
Montgomery County – Silver Springs Martin Luther School
Bucks County – Edison Court
Montgomery County – The Village