About the Family Services Division (FSD)

FSD works in partnership with families, communities, and others to make sure children and youth are safe from abuse; their basic needs are met; they are free from delinquent behavior; and families are supported to achieve these goals.


Our Practice Model

  • Communicates the values and practices we use in the work we do with children, youth and families;
  • Provides a framework for staff to think about the work we do; and
  • Guides the development of policy and practice guidance.

We Achieve Our Mission By:

  1. Safely stabilizing and preserving families; and if that is not possible;
  2. Safely caring for children/youth and reunifying; and if that is not possible;
  3. Safely supporting the development of permanency and lifelong connections for children/youth.

The Values & Principles That Guide Us:

  • Children have the right to be safe.
  • Families have both strengths and challenges (safety & risk factors).
  • Everyone can grow and change with support and adequate resources.
  • Families know their situations best.
  • Children should only be separated from their parents (or guardians) when it’s necessary to keep them or their communities safe.
  • When children need out-of-home care, we first consider extended family members and friends.
  • Success is more likely when we involve extended family members & friends in the process, early on.
  • For real change to occur, we must work cooperatively with families, share responsibility, and hold each other accountable.
  • Each family’s cultural, ethnic, and spiritual diversity deserves respect.

The Outcomes We Want To Achieve:

  • SAFETY: Children are safe from abuse, neglect, and risk of harm.
  • PERMANENCE: Children have nurturing relationships that sustain them throughout their lives.
  • WELL-BEING: Children do well in their families, schools, & communities.
  • LAW ABIDANCE: Youth are free from delinquent behavior.

Click here to read the complete Practice Model.

Child safety is our top priority.

Our Transformation Plan

In 2008, we began implementing a transformation plan that has substantially changed the way we do the work. This has included:

  • Centralizing the intake and acceptance of child abuse and neglect reports;
  • Implementing “differential response” to accepted reports of child abuse and neglect;
  • Increasing the use of supportive, engaging interventions with families early on; and
  • Placing children with relatives and family friends whenever possible.
While the way we work changes, we remain squarely focused on child safety, well-being, permanency, and law abidance.