InDHSS: Employee Newsletter




Meet the South Central Management Team

The South Central Management Team consists of Sheridan Desgranges, Linda Clapp-Damerow, Jayna Ahlf and Tim Bolles. We have the distinct privilege of leading the South Central Region of the Office of Children’s Services.
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DHSS becoming a 'trauma-informed' system

In September's Pipeline I spoke about trauma-informed care. This issue continues to be on the forefront, so you are likely to keep hearing about it, not only from within the world of child welfare but in many other venues as well. Being trauma-informed is the one of the top priorities being identified and discussed across the country, as well as in Alaska. It is a coined phrase seeking to describe a philosophy or understanding that guides an agency's policy or a practitioner's approach to assessing and decision-making for working with those who have experienced trauma.
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Draft Child Protection Policies available for public comment

The Office of Children’s Services (OCS) and the Department of Law have been working to revise portions of OCS’ Policies and Procedures manual to reflect changes to the agency’s internal procedures as a result of the Alaska Supreme Court’s decision in State v. Native Village of Tanana. We have now completed our comprehensive review and the associated revisions to the Child Protection Services Policy and Procedure manual.
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Keep moving forward

Alone. Confused. Unorganized. These are words that describe my time in the foster care system. I was placed in foster care at the age of 3 and reunited with my mother at the age of 5 for only a year.
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New OCS policy outlines measures for psychotropic medication for children in foster care

A new Office of Children's Services (OCS) policy (effective March 15, 2013) stresses that psychotropic medications are to be prescribed to children in custody only when absolutely medically necessary in concert with appropriate therapeutic services, are used as time-limited as possible, and are closely medically monitored to reduce side effects or other health impacts.
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5 QUESTIONS for Dena Ivey

Meet Dena Ivey, OCS’ new Statewide Indian Child Welfare Act Coordinator.
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Don’t Forget!

Early Childhood Mental Health Institute
April 30–May 2, 2013
Egan Civic and Convention Center
Anchorage, Alaska

Featured keynote presenters:
Walter S. Gilliam, Ph.D.
Joy Osofsky, Ph.D.

Workshop presenters include:
Joni Bennett, M.A.
Kim Burnett, M.ED., E.C.S.E., C.B.C.
Addy Peters, M.S.
Cary Moore, OTR/L
Kristin Mortenson, M.C., L.P.C. Matt Sena, M.S.

Additional workshops are presented by local experts
A special track is designated for early care and learning professionals

Some scholarships will be available. Click here to learn more and to register:


Greetings fellow Alaskans. As many of you likely are aware, this month and the next several mark significant months to celebrate and give thanks to those who dedicate themselves to the field of child welfare and to serving children and families in need.
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One of the key measures we monitor in the delivery of child welfare services is the frequency of our visits with children. These visits are where some of our most important work is done, and it is here that we develop and maintain rapport with the children in care, assess their safety and well-being, and engage them in planning for their future
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Q: When someone has child protection history he or she can never be a foster parent.
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