Governor confident overlooked CPS cases will be addressed

Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX (CBS5) -

Arizona's Child Protective Services agency was back in the spotlight at the state Capitol Monday, as members of a CPS oversight committee were updated on what's being done to fix the mess at CPS.

Charles Flanagan is chairman of the CARE team, an oversight group the governor created to watch over the CPS investigations.

"This week we'll see a significant increase in the number of children seen, compared to last couple of weeks," said Flanagan. "These are cases that can either be assigned for investigation or completed."

Last month, Dept. of Economic Security Director Clarence Carter revealed that more than 6,000 child abuse reports were not investigated, dating back to 2008, prompting the governor to launch three separate investigations.

What made things worse was the recent discovery of a box of CPS case files found in an alley next to a dumpster behind a Phoenix home.

Carter told the committee that a former case worker apparently left the files behind in a desk then moved to California, and the new tenant threw the files out not knowing what they were.

"What happened is - she had taken some files home to do some work and didn't properly secure them," said Carter. "There were files to go along with family photos. She had undoubtedly some files home to do some work and didn't properly secure them."

Gov. Jan Brewer was asked Monday if she is will ask Carter to step down.

"We will get to the bottom of it and hold those responsible at the right time," said Brewer. "You don't convict anybody until you have the records and you have the information. We're going to move forward cautiously and do it the right way."

Dana Wolfe Naimark is director of the Children's Action Alliance.

Naimark said it's clear CPS has its problems, which is why her group organized a recent forum  to discuss what needs to be done to help Arizona children.

Some of the Children's Action Alliance recommendations to CPS include:

  • Providing more affordable child care to Arizona families.
  • Better domestic violence assistance.
  • Helping homeless families.
  • More prevention programs to mentor parents before there's a crisis.

"It's not that money is a magic answer," said Naimark. "But the answers do require resources. To reinvest in prevention requires resources, to reinvest in child care requires resources, to reduce case loads of CPS staff requires resources."

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. 

  • Governor confident overlooked CPS cases will be addressedMore>>

  • CPS sidebar

    Wednesday, June 11 2014 10:06 AM EDT2014-06-11 14:06:08 GMT
    READ: When kids outgrow CPS, many leave with nothing READ: Report shows Child Protective Services struggling READ: CPS team looks to enhance hotline WEBSITE: Info on becoming a foster or adoptive parent READ:More >
    READ: When kids outgrow CPS, many leave with nothing READ: Report shows Child Protective Services struggling READ: CPS team looks to enhance hotline WEBSITE: Info on becoming a foster or adoptive pMore >