Auglaize County Children Services FAQs
What is the role of Ohio Child Protective Services?
Child protective services are services that prevent child abuse and neglect; that provide an investigation into allegations of adult abuse, neglect and exploitation; and that offer services for abused and/or neglected children and their families (birth, foster and adoptive). Ohio's PCSAs are required to assess and investigate all screened in reports of child abuse and neglect. After receiving a report, the PCSA will complete an assessment and, if necessary, work with the family to develop a case plan identifying services necessary to reduce risk to the child and prevent abuse or neglect from occurring again. In instances where it is found that children cannot safely remain in their own homes, the PCSA will work with the local court system to remove them and find an alternative safe placement, preferably with relatives.
What is the best way to report child abuse and neglect?
To make a report of abuse or neglect, contact the PCSA in the county where the child and his or her parent, guardian or custodian reside. You can make a report to Auglaize County Children Services by telephoning 419-739-6505 and state that you wish to make a child abuse and neglect report. Emergency situations of abuse and neglect can also be reported to law enforcement might then contact a children services caseworker. There is always a caseworker on call when the agency office hours have ended.
If I make a report of abuse and neglect will my identity be kept confidential?
The law protects the confidentiality of a reporter. A social worker can not reveal, confirm or deny who a reporter may be. If a case becomes court involved there are some exceptions where the Judge might rule that reporting source is revealed, but this happens very rarely. If there is a criminal investigation concerning persons suspected of making false reports to Children Services for purposes of harassing or stalking others, the reporting sources might be revealed in that type of situation. The agency is obligated to share with law enforcement the reported information if a children services case involves a criminal complaint.
What happens if I make a false report of child abuse or neglect?
Making a false report can lead to being charged criminally for the false allegations. This can also result in a misdemeanor in the first degree which can include jail time and fines.
What happens if I make a report about a child I feel is in danger, but the report is unfounded?
There are no consequences as long as the report was made in good faith.
Can I make a neglect complaint because I don't think my child support is being used for our children?
If you believe your child support is not being used correctly for your children, it would be best for you to consult with your attorney regarding this issue as this appears to be more of a custodial court issue as opposed to a Children Services investigative issue.
My child's parent has a new adult partner. This new partner is disciplining my children, and I want to know if I can make a complaint?
Children Services does not investigate partners of parents using discipline on the children unless it appears that is is being done abusively to the children. If you are concerned that your child's parent's partner is being abusive or neglectful to your child, then you should make a report to the agency.
My child's parent is not following our custody agreement, and I want to know if I can make a complaint?
Children Services does not act in the primary role of enforcing custody agreements. You are encouraged to consult with your attorney to explore options if you have a concern that your custody agreement is not being followed. If you have an abuse or neglect concern, the this should be reported.
I disagree with the way my child(ren}'s parent who has custody is too strict/ or gives them too many freedoms. I want to know if this is abuse or neglect?
Not necessarily, it could be simply a difference in parenting styles between two parents. If this is the case, the agency would not conduct an investigation on who is the ''better parent" as the agency does not act in the role in determining who is the ''better" custodial parent. You are encouraged to consult with your attorney to explore your options if you disagree with the other parent's parenting style. If you have a concern that your child is being abused or neglected, then you should report this to the agency.
What is Neglect?
Neglect is failure to meet a child's basic requirements such as supervision, housing, clothing, medical attention, nutrition, and support.
What is Emotional Neglect?
Failure to significantly provide the support or affection necessary for a child's psychological and social development.
What is Physical abuse?
Physical abuse is marks or injuries inflicted by non-accidental means that appear to be excessive, repeated or unwarranted that can pose a risk to a child's health and well being.
What is sexual abuse?
This includes sexual activity between an adult and a child where the adult is in power or authority situation over the child. This can also include children engaging in nonconsensual sexual activity with other children when the other child is in a position of authority or power over the child. This includes fondling to rape.
What is emotional abuse?
Emotional abuse is consistent and chronic behavior which interferes with the psychological or social development of a child.
How old does my child have to be, to be left home alone?
There is no certain age, however; there are some circumstances that you should take into consideration. Babies and toddlers should always be monitored. The child that is being left alone should have access to emergency numbers and know the address at which they are at. They should be able to demonstrate confidence to handle this responsibility and know how to contact their parent/guardian in the event of a problem. They should know how to handle situations such as strangers coming to the door or telephoning the home. The child should be educated on how to respond to a fire, illness or weather emergencies. They should be able to contact you or another responsible adult at all times. If a problem incident does occur and the police or Department of Job and Family Services are notified, the parent/guardian could be charged criminally.
What is Safe Haven for Newborns?
Not all women who get pregnant are ready to raise a child. Sometimes they see no options except to abandon the baby. Safe Havens provides a new option. It allows a birth parent to leave an infant (up to 30 days old) with: a medical worker in a hospital; a medical worker at a fire department or other emergency service organization; or with a peace officer at a law enforcement agency. If the infant is left with a person at one of these places and has not been abused, the parent will face no legal consequences for making this choice.
Who can take a newborn to a Safe Haven?
The birth parent (mother or father) can take a child to a Safe Haven. The law provides protection from prosecution only for the child 's parents.
What is a foster home?
A foster home is a temporary, licensed home for children who are removed from their own homes. These homes are licensed by the state and are relicensed each year. Foster home also receive a payment each month for food, clothing and other necessities the child may need.
Who can be a foster parent?
• Single or married
• Homeowners or renters
• Must be licensed
• Must 21 years of age
• Ongoing training is a must
• Criminal check needs to be done
Can family visit the child if he/she is in a foster home?
Yes, family can visit the child. The social worker arranges visiting times with the families at a location and for a length of time determined by the Court and Children Services.
What is adoption?
Adoption is the legal method in which adults can become legal parents of children who were not born to them.
Who can Adopt?
• Single or married
• Homeowners or renters
• Must 21 years of age
• if married, you need to have been married for at least one year.
How long does an adoption take?
Each adoption is different; therefore the time it takes to complete an adoption varies. It depends on age, sex or health needs of the child you want. It also depends on the time it takes for you to prepare and on your time spent learning.