The decision to remove a child is not made by one person. The DCS Specialist discusses each case with a supervisor. When an emergency removal of a child has occurred or the removal of a child is being considered, a Team Decision Making (TDM) Meeting is held. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the child’s safety and where they will live.
If a child is removed from the parent, guardian or custodian’s custody or if removal of a child is being considered the following outcomes at the TDM Meeting may occur:
The child is returned or remains in the parent’s custody;
A dependency petition or In-Home Intervention is filed in the juvenile court; or
A voluntary foster care agreement is made.
In certain situations, the parent, guardian or custodian and DCS may agree to place a child in voluntary foster care as an alternative to a dependency petition. This service, limited to a 90-day period, is entered into only when families are willing and able to resolve problems within the allowed time frames. Written consent of the parents as well as the child, if age 12 or older, is required.