In 1996, the US Congress amended the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) to require states to establish Citizen Review Panels. The federal statute commissions Citizen Review Panels to evaluate the extent to which the state and local agencies are effectively discharging their child protection responsibilities in accordance with the State’s child protective services system plan, which is required for funding under CAPTA and the specific child protection standards contained in CAPTA. Panels may review Child Protective Services cases, data reports, policies, and procedures and any other data considered important to ensure the protection of children.
San Mateo County’s CRP plays a key role in providing input to child welfare policies and procedures.
San Mateo County CRP has established a linkage with the Children’s Collaborative Action Team (CCAT), which serves as the Child Abuse Prevention entity in the County. CCAT is composed of parents and executive directors and staff from community agencies who work with at-risk children and children who have been victims of abuse and neglect. CRP sends a representative to CCAT meetings and uses CCAT as a public forum for reporting on its work.
CRP Focus - Fiscal Year 2006-07
- Reviewing data about the implementation of Team Decision Making.
- Reviewing reports and seeking information from San Mateo County Human Services Agency representatives about efforts being made to reduce the rate of re-entry (and the efficacy of those efforts) and to improve the overall effectiveness of the child welfare system.
- Examining options to mitigate the difficulties associated with child welfare services recipients accessing available services.
- Enhancing CRP’s outreach efforts so that more interested parties in San Mateo County are aware of the CRP and its work.
- Continuing to recruit CRP members to reach the established goal of 15 members.
- Exploring the possibility of implementing a “Parents helping Parents” project in San Mateo County, to provide support to families involved with the child welfare system.
- Monitoring the implementation of the differential response program as it expands to serve the whole county.
- Continuing efforts to develop knowledge and understanding about the challenges faced by the child welfare system.
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has…”