In August, DCFS laid off 297 employees under the new budget-cutting policy directive. While across-the-board layoffs were rescinded following union negotiations, DCFS intact services case worker positions were not restored. Most have been reassigned to investigator positions.
Both federal and state law contains numerous requirements directing DCFS to provide coordinated services to families to prevent abuse and neglect, and to avoid family separation.
"From now on, the state will have only two options: Do nothing, except label a child 'abused' or 'neglected,' or take the children from their parents and put them into foster care. The humane alternative—and the one both federal and state law demands—will be gone for most children coming to DCFS' attention who are over the age of 6," said Redleaf.