Today, the Texas Public Policy Foundation applauds Rep. Jacey Jetton for leading the effort to protect Texas families by improving the quality of reports of child abuse and neglect to the Department of Family and Protective Services.
This legislation, House Bill 1667, will end anonymous reporting, a system ripe for abuse, while providing professionals with the discretion to provide certain low-risk families to supportive community services, rather than calling CPS.
“When we have families in need, we should ensure they are receiving timely assistance to combat food insecurity, housing needs, medical needs, or other concerns they may be experiencing. House Bill 1667 will allow families to receive access to these services without the added stress of interaction with CPS,” said Rep. Jetton. “It will also help improve the efficiency of investigations into reports of suspected child abuse and neglect by freeing CPS to prioritize children in danger of harm.”
“Each year, DFPS receives more than 700,000 reports of suspected abuse or neglect. Only a small percentage of these are ever confirmed—most are either determined to be unfounded or referred out for services CPS does not provide,” said Andrew Brown, Associate Vice President of Policy for TPPF. “By incorporating best practices shown to improve the accuracy of reports and promote family well-being through less invasive supportive services, House Bill 1667 will make the Texas child welfare system smarter and more effective.”