Over the past several months, UPE and DCFAS have been meeting regarding the proposed changes to the Safety Plan Policy and Procedure. The Department intends to modify the timeline from 5 workdays to 2 calendar days to have the safety plan and notes into CWS/CMS. From the start, UPE objected to this timeline as it will have a huge impact on workload. The Department believes having this information within 2 days is necessary for safety, in the event another referral is called in after hours or over the weekend. In order to address the Department's concerns and mitigate the impact on our members, UPE made several reasonable proposals. UPE proposed submitting the most relevant safety information, almost immediately, to an inbox to ensure the Department had access to the information in the event another call was made. However, the Department refused to compromise as it related to the timeline and rejected our proposals. UPE let the Department know they were setting up workers to fail. This was not in the best interest child or family safety. Workers are already overwhelmed with the current workload, and cutting timelines would only add to their already full plates. Despite our efforts, the Department intends to move forward with this change. UPE was not in agreement. This change was not made in collaboration with UPE.
The Department further shared they intended to implement this policy immediately, without training. Once again, UPE objected to the Department's plan. It is unreasonable to expect our members to adhere to a new policy without the appropriate training and an opportunity to ask questions. Therefore, the Department agreed to delay implementation until January 2023. The policy will be published in policy tech November 1, 2022, with the understanding our members will be trained within the next 60 days.
Thank you to our 008 Board Members, Eric Booker and Sarah Singleton, for their advocacy