Office of Children and Family Services

Caseworker Deployment in Selected Child Welfare Programs

At the time of our audit, the Department of Social Services was responsible for administering New York State's child welfare programs (the Department was subsequently reorganized and the Office of Children and Family Services became responsible for administering these programs). The programs were directly operated by 58 local social services districts under the supervision of the Department. We examined the deployment of caseworkers in selected child welfare programs and found that this deployment was not monitored by the Department. In the absence of such monitoring, the caseloads in some districts may be too heavy, and when caseloads are too heavy, caseworkers are less able to perform their duties effectively. When we computed caseload ratios in 55 of the 58 districts, we found that the ratios in many districts exceeded the standards developed by the Child Welfare League of America, a not-for-profit organization active in the area of child welfare. We recommended that the Department develop appropriate child welfare caseload standards and monitor the caseloads in the districts against these standards.

For a complete copy of Report 96-S-52 click here.
For a copy of the associated follow-up report click here.
For a copy of the 90-day response click here.