Child Protective Services (CPS) are specialized services aimed at safeguarding the rights and welfare of abused, neglected or dependent children. The Cabinet has the authority and obligation to assure that reports meet the statutory and regulatory definitions of abuse, neglect or dependency before a child protective assessment or investigation begins.
Division of Protection and Permanency (DPP) accepts reports that meet the statutory and regulatory definitions of abuse, neglect or dependency where the alleged perpetrator is in a caretaking role. The identity of persons who report allegations of child abuse or neglect is kept confidential. Reports of child abuse or neglect allegations from persons who wish to remain anonymous will be accepted; however staff encourage all reporters to provide contact information so follow-up can occur if more information is needed.
The intake FSOS:
Ensures that the Kentucky Child/Adult Protective Services Reporting System is monitored continuously during business hours (8:00am-4:30pm Eastern Standard Time).
The intake SSW:
- Explains to the reporting source:
- His/her immunity from liability pursuant to KRS 620.050; and
- The Cabinet’s requirements to maintain the confidentiality of the reporting source, unless ordered to report such by a court;
- Attempts to elicit from the reporter as much information about the child’s circumstances as possible, including:
- The identity of the reporting source and his/her relationship to the child or situation;
- Specific information as to the nature and extent of the abuse, neglect, or dependency;
- The cause of the abuse, neglect or dependency;
- The current location of the child and family/caretaker;
- Identifying information regarding any witness to the alleged incident;
- The condition of the child;
- Knowledge or suspicion of a previous occurrence of child abuse or neglect;
- Whether the reporting person, or any other person, has taken any action;
- Whether there are any immediate safety issues for the child;
- Whether there are any safety issues for the investigative worker; and
- General information regarding the perpetrator including name, location and relationship to the child;
- Enters reports in TWIST as directed by the Case Naming Protocol Tip Sheet;
- Assigns reports to the county where the victim resides, except in cases where allegations of abuse or neglect are made against a staff in a specialized setting. Those referrals are assigned to the county where the facility/home is located.
When a web based report is received from the Kentucky Child/Adult Protective Services Reporting System, the intake SSW:
- Follows procedure three (3) above;
- Copies and pastes the information from the report, into the intake screens in TWIST;
- Ensures that the web tracker ID is entered in TWIST on the 115 to allow the reporting source to follow-up regarding whether the report was accepted;
- Ensures that all reports received from the site are screened according to the same criteria as all other reports;
- Contacts the reporting source via e-mail to advise when the report does not meet criteria, following the template in practice guidance below.
- When a web based report is received involving a DCBS or PCP foster/adoptive home, crisis stabilization unit, family registered child care home, licensed child care facility, registered or family child care provider, school employee, supports for community living (SCL), community mental health and mental retardation center (CMHC), psychiatric residential treatment facility (PRTF), psychiatric hospital or day treatment facility it will be routed to the county where the victim resides and the centralized intake SSW will forward it to the county in which the facility is located.
- The centralized intake SSW assigns all other reports to the county where the victim resides.
Contingencies and Clarifications
- Based on regional protocol, another county may be assigned a foster home referral as deemed appropriate by the SRA.
- When a CPS report is received and accepted, the agency’s primary responsibility is establishing the safety of the child(ren). The most critical element in the decision regarding where to assign a report is determined by which county can ensure safety of the child(ren) in the timeliest manner.
- Since situations vary between regions, an all inclusive list of potential scenarios is not possible. However, the following questions should be considered by centralized intake (CI) teams and on call staff when making decisions about where to assign an investigative report:
- Is the child at imminent risk?
- Where does the child typically reside?
- Which location would minimize time and travel for an assigned investigator?
- SRAs have the discretion to assign a report, within their region, to the county determined to be the most appropriate based on workload, staffing or other personnel needs.
- When more than one region is involved, regional management, from both regions, (SRAs, SRCAs and SRAAs) is to work together to make the best possible assignments of CPS reports. The Child Protection Branch is available for consultation regarding SOP clarifications about assignment issues and the Division of Service Regions is available to assist with mediation and resolution of situations as needed.
- Each region has an e-mail box to receive the online referrals.
- The Kentucky Child/Adult Protective Services Reporting System is not available for use on evenings, weekends or holidays and the website should not be used for emergency referrals.
Template for Web Based Reports Not Accepted
- If a web based report is received, but does not meet acceptance criteria, please copy and paste, verbatim, the following information into an e-mail response to the reporting source:
- Provide the web ID number
This e-mail is to advise that the report you submitted via the web based reporting system for the Commonwealth of Kentucky did not meet acceptance criteria.
If you have additional information or concerns not included in the original report, please call the abuse hotline at 1-877-597-2331.
- The caregiver’s act (HB 176) was enacted to enable relative caregivers to have authority to make health care or school arrangements for a child in their care, who is not currently under the supervision of the Cabinet.