Progress Made in Meeting Objectives of the Citizen Review Panels (continued)
Provide for public outreach and comment to assess the impact of procedures and policies upon children and families in the community.
Members of the Washington County Citizen Review Panel researched the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) bill and sent a letter of support to the Washington County Commissioners and local legislators.
Advocate for needed resources to achieve the protection of children from abuse and neglect and ensure permanent homes for children in a timely manner.
Ramsey County Children’s Services Review Panel’s Child Welfare Finance Committee members, in conjunction with Court Appointed Special Advocates Minnesota (guardians ad litem) and the Child Well-Being working group of Minnesota Without Poverty, held a briefing to educate state legislators about funding child welfare in Minnesota. Twenty-one legislators from both sides of the aisle and over 80 citizens attended the briefing. All four of Minnesota’s Citizen Review Panels formally supported the efforts of this legislative briefing and panel members from Washington, Ramsey and Chisago Counties attended
Prepare and make public an annual report containing a summary of the activities of the panel.
Each of the four counties annual reports are attached in Appendix B of this report. All of the reports can be seen on the Minnesota Department of Human Services Web site at: http://www.dhs.state.mn.us/main/idcplg?IdcService=GET DYNAMIC CONVERSI ON&RevisionSelectionMethod=LatestReleased&dDocName=id 000155 .
Monitor the extent to which the Minnesota Department of Human Services is fulfilling child protection responsibilities in accordance with its Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) Five-Year Plan.
Please see the Minnesota’s Compliance with the State Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act Plan, 2007, A Report of the Citizen Review Panels, attached in Appendix A of this report.
Final Report of the 1999 – 2001 Citizen Review Panels Pilot Project
Have the Citizen Review Panels in Minnesota made a difference in the lives of children and families involved with the child protection system? Citizens interviewing for panel positions in 1999 identified the need to make a difference as a reason they were interested in these volunteer positions, and the question of whether this was accomplished remains today.
Pilot projects often end being just that, without a momentum having been built to evaluate the effectiveness of the pilot or a momentum to carry on the work. This report will provide a summary of the work of the panels as noted in their annual reports, to assist the reader in answering the above question.
The technical requirements of Minnesota’s Citizen Review Panels for Child Protection have been met, and the information supporting this is contained in the Minnesota Citizen Review Panels’ 1999, 2000 Annual Reports. The key elements of legislation that gave the panels their charge and that they have met are as follows: Minnesota Statute 256.01 Subd. 15. Citizen Panel Members completed their charge at the end of the two years, namely to “examine the policies and