Find an alphabetized list of terms related to the Department of Family Services.
Absent parent/Noncustodial Parent: A biological parent not residing in the home. The parent does not have legal or primary physical custody of the child.
Abandonment: The child has been left without obvious behavioral, verbal, or written intentions of reclaiming the child. (Child Protection)
Abandonment: Leaving a vulnerable adult without financial support or the means or ability to obtain food, clothing, shelter or health care. (Adult Protection)
Absconder: A juvenile under court-ordered probation or parole status who has run away from the placement mandated by the supervising agency or court. (Juvenile Services)
Abuse: Inflicting or causing physical or mental injury, harm or imminent danger to the physical or mental health or welfare of a child other than by accidental means, including abandonment, excessive or unreasonable corporal punishment, malnutrition or substantial risk thereof by reason of intentional or unintentional neglect, and the commission or allowing the commission of a sexual offense against a child as defined by law. (Child Protection) (CPS Rules, Chapter1, Section 4(b))
Abuse: The intentional or reckless infliction, by the vulnerable adult’s caregiver, person of trust or authority, professional, family member or other individual of (Adult Protection):
- Unreasonable confinement which threatens the welfare and well being of a vulnerable adult; or
- Cruel punishment with resulting physical or emotional harm or pain to a vulnerable adult; or
- Photographing vulnerable adults for immoral or illegal purposes without the vulnerable adult’s written consent;
- Sexual Abuse
Accepted Report: An allegation that meets the statutory definition of abuse or neglect is within the scope of child(ren)/adult protective services, is verified and assigned for investigation or assessment, and is made into a WYCAPS incident. (Child/Adult Protection)
Accountability: Accountability focuses on the need to create an awareness and acceptance in youth of the harmful consequences of their negative behavior. It refers to the requirement that offenders “make amends” for the harm resulting from their crimes by repaying or restoring losses to victims and the community. Accountability demands that youthful offenders make amends and has strong implications for rehabilitation and reduced recidivism. (Juvenile Services)
Action Plan: The written plan developed by the caseworker in cooperation with the vulnerable adult, caregiver and others as needed, to determine what outcome is desired, what actions and services are indicated and who is responsible for taking the action and/or arranging/providing the service. (Child/Adult Protection & Juvenile Services) For Adult Protection the plan is a check list for services needed and who is responsible for the referral.
Active Efforts: ICWA term which is not defined by federal regulation but means activities taken by the agency to prevent the placement of the child as well as working towards reunification for the family. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Activities of Daily Living (ADLs): The basic personal tasks that are a necessary part of most people’s daily routine. These include eating, bathing, dressing, moving around the house, and using the toilet.
Adjudication: A finding by the court or the jury, incorporated in a decree, as to the truth of the facts alleged in the petition
Adjudicated Father: Refer to Parent
Adolescent Drug/Alcohol Assessment: An instrument used to evaluate an adolescent’s level of drug/alcohol use/abuse. (Juvenile Services)
Administrator: The director of the Department of Family Services or his designee.
Adult Protective Services Act: The Act relating to adult protective services in Wyoming, to assist in the administration of the Department’s programs, and to assure the safety and well being of vulnerable adults, pursuant to Wyo. Stats. §§ 35-20-102 through 35-20-116. (Adult Protection)
Adult Protection Team: The formal organization of professionals or individuals with appropriate expertise assembled to assist and coordinate adult protection activities with the Department and other agencies or organizations that serve vulnerable adults. (Adult Protection)
Adult Protective Services Community Teams: A forum to improve services and to identify system gaps or problems on a local level. Community teams with a focus on prevention, education, and identification of resources to support vulnerable adults. (Adult Protection)
Advanced Age: Defined in statute as age 60 (2011)
Affinity/Kinship/Kin: Refers to individuals whom the child/youth, family or individual recognizes as "family" and who may or may not be related by blood, marriage or adoption. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services/Adult Protection) Also refer to Relative and Kin/Kinship
Agency: Any division, institution or program within a department of the state and all institutions, boards and programs administering, planning and providing for services under the supervision of a director, and counties, municipal corporations, school districts, community college districts, joint powers boards or special districts specifically involved in providing government facilities or functions, and all private or non-profit organizations involved in providing human services, or the regulation of human services.
Agent: One, who by mutual consent, acts for the benefit of another; one authorized by a party to act in that party’s behalf.
Anonymous Testing for HIV: The person ordering and performing the test does not maintain a record of the name or other personal identifiers of the person whose specimen they are testing. (Communicable Diseases) (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Assessment: A comprehensive process for identifying, considering and weighing factors that affect child/vulnerable adult safety and well-being. Assessment includes information revealed through interviews, as well as child, vulnerable adult and family needs, problems, strengths, capacities, and possible resources. It goes beyond determining safety and level of risk to explore family/individual connections and community resources. Assessment links directly with case planning.
Assessment Track: The Assessment Track is designed to create a climate in which families will be comfortable in acknowledging family concerns and seek assistance when there are allegations of abuse and/or neglect, but the criteria of an investigation is not met, and services to the family could prevent problems from escalating to a level for which an investigation is warranted. The process by which family/individual strengths and needs are evaluated. The caseworker and family/individual are provided with a clear understanding of those aspects of an alleged abuse or neglect situation, which may require child, vulnerable adult welfare interventions. Assessment services assist in determining whether there are safety issues to be resolved, and to provide services to families/individuals to increase their ability to resolve foreseeable risks to the child or individual.
APPLA/OPPLA: Another Planned Permanent Living Arrangement: is a permanency goal for youth who are 16 years or older when other permanency efforts/options have been unsuccessful. Efforts shall continue to identify a permanency plan other than APPLA and those efforts shall be on-going while the youth remains in care. The Independent and Transitional Living Plan shall be developed with the youth who have APPLA as his/her permanency plan.
Application Packet: A packet of forms signed and returned by individuals interested in applying to become a foster home. (Foster Care)
Assisted Living Facility: A dwelling operated by a person, firm or corporation engaged in providing limited nursing care; person care and boarding home care, for persons not related to the owner of the facility. This definition may include facilities with secured units and facilities dedicated to the special care and services for people with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia conditions.
No Terms At This Time
Candidate for Foster Care: candidate for foster care is a child who is at serious risk of removal from home as evidenced by either DFS making reasonable efforts to prevent such removal or DFS pursuing his/her removal from the home.
Capacity to Consent: The ability to understand and appreciate the nature and consequences of making decisions concerning one’s person, including, provisions for health or mental health care, food, shelter, clothing, safety or financial affairs. This determination may be based on assessment or investigative findings, observation or medical or mental health evaluations. (Adult Protection)
Caretaker: A person, other than a natural parent or legal guardian, who is at least eighteen (18) years of age and is the primary physical custodian of the child; a person responsible for a child's welfare. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Caregiver: Any person or in-home service provider responsible for the care of a vulnerable adult because of (Adult Protection):
- A family relationship; or
- Voluntary assumption of responsibility for care; or
- Court ordered responsibility or placement; or
- Rendering services in an adult workshop or adult residential program; or
- Rendering services in an institution or in a community-based program; or
- Acceptance of a legal obligation or responsibility to the vulnerable adult through a power of attorney, advanced healthcare directive or other legal designation.
Case Assessment: The documentation of family strengths, weaknesses, and the resources necessary to protect the child and assist the family. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Case Management: A service intervention in which the case worker assists clients to secure, coordinate, and oversee the formal and informal resources determined necessary from the risk assessment and goal setting process.
Case Plan: The Department’s written document which outlines the outcomes, goals, and tasks in order to meet the needs of the family with regards to safety, permanency and well-being of the child(ren)/youth.
Case closure: The process of ending the relationship between the caseworker and the family/individual. Case Closure occurs when it has been determined that the child, vulnerable adult or youth can safely remain or return to the parents’ home or for an adult remain in their home; the child, vulnerable adult or youth’s minimal needs are being met; the child, vulnerable adult or youth has been placed into other permanent placements including living with kin or adoption; the child, vulnerable adult or youth no longer presents a risk of harm to self or others, including risk to the community; there is a court order to dismiss the case; or when the child has become emancipated from the system. A case can be closed if the family refuses services, unless ordered by the court.
Caseworker/Probation Officer: An employee of the Department who is assigned and trained in the performance of child and adult protection as well as probation supervision services pursuant to department rules and regulations.
Central Registry: A statewide electronic record of persons who have been the subject of a substantiated maltreatment allegation or for whom a complaint is under investigation. The record contains the findings of the adult/child protection investigation. Entries on the Central Registry can be expunged when good cause is shown. (Chapter 4, Section G in Family Support Services Manual) (Adult/Child Protection)
Child(ren)/Youth: An individual under the age of majority. Wyo. Stat. § 14-1-101 provides “upon becoming eighteen (18) years of age, an individual reaches the age of majority.”
Child Care: A service for families provided on behalf of children and their parents that is designed to supplement parental care.
Child Care Center: Any private person, partnership, association, or corporation that is operating a business for profit or otherwise where sixteen (16) or more children receive care for any part of the day.
Child In Need Of Supervision: Any child who is habitually truant or has run away from home or habitually disobeys reasonable and lawful demands of his parents, guardian, custodian or other proper authority or is ungovernable and beyond control.
Child Protection Services Medical Consultant: A contracted physician with a board certified specialty in pediatrics or neonatology. The medical consultant is responsible for reviewing medical information and consulting with the CPS specialist and other experts as deemed necessary. When a medical consultant is required, contact the social services program manager for assistance in arranging a medical consultant. (Child Protection) (Reports of Withholding Medically Indicated Treatment for Disabled Infants)
Child Care Provider (Licensed): Any person who applies for and is issued a family child care license by the DFS child care licenser agent.
Child Placing Agency (CPA): The classification of program certification that DFS (pursuant to state statute) has the responsibility of certifying/licensing. A CPA recruits, trains, approves, and provides oversight of their own foster homes. DFS contracts for this service
Child Specific Relative Foster Care: Type of foster home certification issued to individual(s) who have applied to become foster parents and are related by blood, marriage or adoption to the child(ren)/youth in care and who is/are solely interested in caring for their own relative(s) and one or more non-safety waivers limited to items specified in policy, have been allowed on a case-by- case basis for the specific relative child(ren)/youth. Foster care maintenance payment rate is the same as for non-relative family foster care. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Children At Risk: An infant or child born to a parent engaging in or who has a history of engaging in high risk behaviors; a child who has been sexually abused by a person who engages in or has a history of engaging in high risk behaviors; or a child who engages in high risk behavior
Close Contact: In general, close contact means having cared for or lived with someone with an infectious disease. Examples of close contact include kissing or hugging, sharing eating or drinking utensils, and talking to someone within three (3) feet. Close contact does not include activities like walking by a person or briefly sitting across a waiting room or office. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Collateral Contact: Obtaining information concerning a vulnerable adult/child(ren) or family from an individual who has knowledge of the circumstances and family situation but is not directly involved in referring the vulnerable adult/child(ren) to Protective Services.
COMFORT ONE (all caps) is a bracelet provided to applicants following completion of required paperwork. Application must be completed and signed by their physician, returned to the Emergency Medical Services Programs office, along with a $20.00 fee payment. The purpose of this is to instruct Emergency Medical personnel to forgo resuscitation attempts in the event of a patient’s cardiopulmonary arrest. Contact 307-777-7955 or 888-228-8996.
Complicating Factors: Anything that complicates the work with the family that is not direct harm that could include: warning signs, red flags, issues that make the provision of protection more difficult but in and of themselves are not direct dangers.
Communicable Disease: An illness due to a specific infectious agent or its products from an infected person, animal, or inanimate reservoir to a susceptible host, either directly or indirectly through an intermediate plant or animal host, vector, or the inanimate environment.
Community Juvenile Services Board (CJSB): Community Juvenile Services Boards establish, maintain and promote the development of juvenile services in communities and gear them to early identification and diversion of children and youth at risk of entering the juvenile court system in an effort to prevent juvenile delinquency. Staffers provide technical assistance for the development and implementation of Juvenile Services Boards in communities throughout the state. (Juvenile Services)
Community Protection: The Community Protection objective explicitly acknowledges and endorses a long-time public expectation that juvenile services must place equal emphasis on ensuring public safety at the most efficient cost and using the least restrictive level of service possible to protect the community. Community protection envisions a wide variety of creative intermediate sanctions (and positive incentives) with confinement as a last resort. (Juvenile Services)
Competency Development: Competency Development requires youth who enter the service arena should exit the system more capable of being productive and responsible in the community. Competency development is distinguished from treatment as an active, positive enterprise in which youth develop skills through productive and meaningful work. (Juvenile Services)
Concurrent Plan: The term used to describe an alternative to reunification of a child(ren) with their original family. Alternative (concurrent) planning for a child(ren) should be done simultaneously with reunification planning and should begin at the time the child(ren) are initially removed from their family. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Confidential: Personal information pertaining to communicable diseases, except as otherwise required by law, shall not be disclosed unless the:
- Is for statistical purposes, and the information is released in a manner that does not reveal personal identifiers; or
- Is necessary for the exclusive administration and enforcement of rules and regulations as determined by the Health Officer or Designee; or
- Is preceded by the written consent of the infected individual and/or guardian, specifying where the information shall be sent; or
- Is for notification of person(s) responsible for a child’s/adult welfare, as necessary to protect life and health.
Confidentiality: A principle of professional ethics, which prohibits caseworkers from disclosing information about a client or case without the client's/guardian consent. The National Association of Social Worker's (NASW) Code of Ethics directs workers to "respect the privacy of clients and hold in confidence all information obtained in the course of professional service."
Conservator: A person appointed by a court of proper jurisdiction to have the custody and control of the property of a vulnerable adult.
Contact: An individual who has been exposed to a communicable disease. (Communicable Diseases)
Contact: The process of obtaining information about the offender and/or the offender’s behavior by the ISP Officer(s). The source of the information may be the offender or a collateral person; it may be in person or telephonically; it may be at a variety of locations. The following are recognized as applicable contacts: offender’s residence, school, employer, family/significant other, police, and treatment counselor. (Juvenile Services)
Core Family Team Members: Members of a family/individual team who are non- negotiable. These include the DFS caseworker, foster-parent(s) or their information, parent(s), and vulnerable adult/child(ren)/youth, and natural supports (if appropriate).
Court: means the district court in the district where the vulnerable adult/child(ren), or youth resides or is found
Court Proceedings: Proceedings which have as their purpose the protection of a child(ren) through an adjudication of whether the child(ren) is abused or neglected , delinquent or a Child in Need of Supervision (CHINS), and the making of an appropriate order of disposition, and proceedings where a consent decree is entered.
Credible evidence: (Refer also to Preponderance of the Evidence).
Crisis Shelter: A short-term, emergency services for a child(ren) who is primarily placed by parent(s) and law enforcement. Research defines crisis as lasting 3-7 days while these beds are 30-day stays by contract that are extendable. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services) Domestic Violence shelters may be used as a crisis shelter for vulnerable adults.
Cultural Humility: A cultural humility perspective challenges us to learn from the people with whom we interact, reserve judgement, and bridge the cultural divide between our perspectives in order to facilitate well-being and promote improved quality of life.
Current Living Arrangement: Where the vulnerable adult/child(ren)/youth are living at the time of the crisis or intervention.
Custodian: A person, institution or agency responsible for the child's welfare and having legal custody of a child by court order or having actual physical custody and control of a child and acting in loco parentis.
Custody: Legal status created by court order which vests in a custodian the right to have physical custody of a minor, the right and duty to protect, train and discipline a minor, the duty to provide him with food, shelter, clothing, transportation, ordinary medical care, education and in an emergency, the right and duty to authorize surgery or other extraordinary medical care. The rights and duties of legal custody are subject to the rights and duties of the guardian of the person of the minor, and to residual parental rights and duties
Danger Statement: Credible worries and concerns DFS and others in the community have about the actions the caregiver/youth may take in the future that will harm the child/adult/community.
- Child Protection Danger Statement Formula: Who is worried--about what activities potential caregivers action/inaction---possible impact on the child
- Probation Danger Statement Formula: Who is worried--about what activities potential youth action/inaction---possible impact on the youth/victim/community
Date of Placement: The date the child was removed from her/his home. An exception occurs when a child is removed from his/her home and placed into a jail, mental hospital or one of the state child institutions, such as the Wyoming Boys' School or Wyoming Girls' School, none of which is considered to be foster care. In these situations, the date of placement would begin when the child is removed from this type of facility and placed by the Department of Family Services into foster care. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Department of Family Services (Agency or Department)/ DFS
Department of Health/DOH
Delinquent Act: An act punishable as a criminal offense by the laws of this state or any political subdivision thereof, or contempt of court under W.S. 14-6-242, or an act violating the terms and conditions of any court order which resulted from the criminal conviction of any child but does not include a status offense
Designated Hospital Liaison: The person named by the hospital or health care facility to act as the contact with DFS in all aspects of cases of suspected withholding of medically indicated treatment from disabled infants with life-threatening conditions. (Child Protection)
Detention: The temporary care of a child in physically restricting facilities pending court disposition or the execution of a court order to place or commit a child to a juvenile detention facility
Developmental Disability (state): A disability attributable to mental retardation, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism or any other neurological handicapping condition requiring services similar to those required by mentally retarded individuals, that has continue or can be expected to continue indefinitely and constitutes a substantial handicap to the individual’s ability to function normally (W.S. 35-1-613 (a)(ii)).
Diligent Search: On-going efforts in identifying, locating and contacting the absent parent(s) and/or relatives and kinship families regarding their interest in maintaining connections with the child and/or providing a temporary or permanent placement for or adopting a child when the child is removed from the home (25 USC § 1901).
Disabled Infant: An infant having a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits or may limit in the future one or more major life activities. (Child Protection)
Discretionary Overrides: A discretionary override is applied by the caseworker to increase the risk level in any case in which the caseworker believes the risk level set by the risk assessment tool does not accurately rate risk for the circumstances. This may occur when the caseworker is aware of conditions affecting risk that are not captured within the items on the risk assessment. Discretionary overrides may increase the risk level by one unit. Discretionary overrides require supervisor approval.
District office: One of the geographic divisions within the Department of Family Services through which Department programs and services are administered.
Division of Developmental Disabilities: The state division responsible for the Resource Center in Lander, Lander as well as extensive preschool services, early intervention services, children’s home and community-based services, adult home and community-based waiver services in Wyoming
Domestic Violence: A pattern of abusive behavior in a relationship used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over the other partner. Domestic violence can be actions or threats of actions that influence or control another person’s behavior and decisions and are meant to intimidate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, coerce, blame, or injure.
Drug Endangered Child (DEC): Children who are at risk of suffering physical or emotional harm as a result of illegal drug use, possession, manufacturing, cultivation, or distribution. They may also be children whose caretaker’s substance misuse interferes with the caretaker’s ability to parent and provide a safe and nurturing environment.
EA Eligibility: A process of applying certain federal criteria to a family’s/child’s situation to determine eligibility for types of services and period of eligibility under the Emergency Assistance Program. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Educational Neglect: A failure or refusal by those responsible for the child’s welfare to provide an education to the child. Educational neglect includes the willful neglect or failure of a parent, guardian, or custodian to enroll a child subject to compulsory school attendance, including but not limited to an approved home school program. (Child Protection) (CPS Rules, Chapter 1, Section 4(s)(i))
- The Department accept referrals of truancy that have risen to a level to cause the attendance officer to make a referral for absences due to the willful neglect or failure of the caretaker pursuant to W.S. 21-4-104 (a)(ii).
- The Department will accept referrals of child truancy when the school attendance officer has provided notice to the caretaker that his/her child’s school attendance is required by law. After such notice is given, the child must subsequently have two (2) unexcused absences, and the school believes the child’s absences were because of the willful neglect or failure of the caretaker to get the child to school.
Electronic Monitoring: A service designed to assist in structuring the movement of selected juveniles at times during their probation. (Juvenile Services)
Eligibility criteria: A set of situations, standards and/or living arrangements that establishes eligibility for the EA Program. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Emergency Assistance (EA): A program that provides or purchases needed services for children who are abused, neglected or abandoned or at-risk of removal from the home including Chins and Delinquents.
Emotional/Psychological Abuse: An injury to the psychological capacity or emotional stability of a child as evidenced by an observable or substantial impairment in his ability to function within a normal range of performance and behavior with due regard to his culture (Psychological Abuse/Mental Injury) (Child Protection)
Emergency services: Those services that may be provided to assist vulnerable adults to prevent or terminate abuse, neglect, exploitation, intimidation or abandonment until the emergency has been resolved
Enhancement: The mechanism by which an Officer intensifies the supervision of an offender who is already under traditional probation with the Department. (Juvenile Services)
Escapee: A juvenile who has made an unauthorized flight from a facility to which he/she has been committed by the court. (Juvenile Services)
Evaluation: Service evaluation is an ongoing process which occurs throughout each individual case and at many levels of the agency. Service evaluation measures the effectiveness of DFS interventions in supporting the goals of the client and of the agency. The basis for evaluation centers around the question, “Did the services provided improve outcomes?”
Exploitation: The reckless or intentional act taken by any person, or any use of the power of attorney, conservatorship or guardianship of a vulnerable adult, to obtain control through deception, harassment, intimidation or undue influence over the vulnerable adult’s money, assets or property with the intention of permanently or temporarily depriving the vulnerable adult of the ownership, use, benefit or possession of his money, assets or property In the absence of legal authority (Adult Protection):
- Employ the services of a third party for the profit or advantage of the person or another person to the detriment of a vulnerable adult;
- Force, coerce or entice a vulnerable adult to perform services for the profit of another against the will of the vulnerable adult.
- Intentionally misuse the principal’s property and, in so doing, adversely affect the principal’s ability to receive health care or pay bills for basic needs or obligations; or
- Abuse the fiduciary duty under a power of attorney, conservatorship or guardianship.
Facility: For adult protection (APS) cases any board and care home such as, but not limited to, adult workshops, adult day care, adult residential programs, nursing homes, adult group homes, adult foster homes, assisted living homes, and institutions. (Adult Protection)
Failure to Thrive and Fetal Neglect: Failure to thrive (FTT) is a general term used to describe a growth rate or pattern below what is expected. Organic FTT is seen when clear- cut medical reason accounts for the poor growth.
- Nutritional Deprivation: Underfeeding (caloric deprivation) causes over fifty percent (50%) of the cases of failure to thrive (underweight) in infancy.
➢ This is usually documented by a weight gain in the hospital of over two ounces per day sustained for at least a week;
➢ A smaller gain is diagnostic if it far surpasses the gain during an equivalent period of time at home;
➢ These cases do not include failure to thrive secondary to organic causes or a feeding error.
- Malnutrition: inadequate nutrition as diagnosed by a licensed physician.
- Non-organic, or Psychosocial FTT: Described as growth failure related to parent- child pattern of interaction that fails to meet the child’s nutritional needs. Most cases of FTT are a combination of organic and non-organic causes that combine to form a “mixed” type of FTT.
Family Child Care Home: Child care facility in which care is provided for three (3) to ten (10) unrelated children from more than one (1) immediate family, in the primary residence of the provider. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services) (Foster Care)
Family Foster Care: A planned, goal directed child welfare service for child(ren) and their parent(s) who must live apart from each other for a period of time because of physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, or special circumstances necessitating out-of-home care. It provides temporary protection and nurturance of children takes place on a twenty-four (24) hour basis in the homes of DFS approved and/or certified families. Placement may include living arrangements in homes of relatives (other than parent(s) or relative(s) from whom the child(ren) was removed). In this level of care the child(ren) attends the public school.
Family Partner(s): The individual member(s) of the Family Team Conference who are identified by the family. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Family Conference The initial and subsequent gatherings of the family and identified support individuals (Family Team/Support Network) with the purpose of developing a family service plan and supporting its progress. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Family Conference Facilitator: The person who prepares for the Family Conference, leads the conference and writes the report or family service plan that results from the conference. This can be a DFS representative or a representative from another agency who has been trained as a facilitator. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Family Team: A team of members ,including the vulnerable adult/child(ren)/youth, parents (including absent parent), maternal/paternal relatives, siblings, other family members, other family supports, and service providers that attend the family partnership conference. Those members of the partnership team that are non-negotiable include the DFS worker, foster- parent(s), parent(s), and vulnerable adult/child(ren)/youth.
Family Planning/Planned Parenthood: Planning intended to regulate the number and spacing of children in a family through the practice of contraception or other methods of birth control. Also, a program or services offering counseling, education and health-care services and/or treatment for family planning purposes and for reproductive health. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Family Service Plan/Family Preservation Plan: Refer to Case Plan
Fatality: The death of a child or vulnerable adult
Fictive Kin: The unrelated biological father or mother of the child's half sibling in the same category as a relative/kinship family. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Fiduciary: A trustee under a testamentary or other trust an executor, administrator, or personal representative of a decedent’s estate, or any other party including a trust advisor or a trust protector, who is acting in a fiduciary capacity for any person, trust or estate. (W.S. 4-10-103 (a)(vii))
Final Risk Level: After completing the override section, indicate the final risk level which is the highest of the scored risk level, policy override risk level (which is always very high) or discretionary risk level.
Follow-up: A caseworker meeting with the family following case closure in substantiated cases. Generally this meeting takes place within three to six months of case closure to ensure that the family is maintaining child safety and permanency. (Child Protection)
Formal Visits: When the child(ren)/youth and parent(s) are able to spend time together to build their relationship. These occur at least monthly but weekly is recommended. If the family members do not reside in the same county, phone calls and letters may be used as weekly visitation. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Foster Care: 24-hour substitute care, with Department of Family Services responsible for placement and care for children outside their own homes. Placement includes living arrangements in homes of relatives (other than parents or relatives from whom the child was removed). Other placements include adoptive placements prior to the finalization of adoption, foster family homes, group homes, and child care institutions including emergency shelters. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Foster-Adopt Home: A home developed specifically with the idea of possible adoption as the outcome of placing a foster child(ren). Such homes may be required to assist in reunification efforts with the child(ren)’s original family, yet must recognize the child(ren) may become available for adoption. The foster-adopt home should be willing to be a resource for the child(ren) regardless of the outcome. Foster Adopt Homes are not encouraged. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Foster Parent(s): person or people who are responsible for providing child(ren)/youth with safe, nurturing, and secure environments when removed from their parent(s) Foster parent(s) may include, but not limited to certified foster parents, relatives (certified or non-certified) and/or affinity/kinship. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services).
Guardian- The person appointed by a court of proper jurisdiction to have guardianship of the vulnerable adult. Guardianships may be limited to specific needs of the vulnerable adult. See also Title 3 of the Wyoming Statutes, Guardianship and Ward. (Adult Protection)
Guardian Ad Litem (GAL): An individual appointed by the court to protect the best interests of a child, vulnerable adult or other incompetent person in a court proceeding. GALs are considered agents or officers of the court, and the office of such persons is to represent the best interests of the child, vulnerable adult or other incompetent person in a court proceeding. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services/Adult Protection)
Goal: A clear statement of what the child(ren)/youth and family want to achieve. The statement indicates what the caregiver/youth will do that demonstrates protective actions to mitigate danger over time. Goals should be positive, strength based measurable, and stated in behavioral terms. They shall be reasonable and achievable and address the underlying conditions or needs while taking into account the identified strengths of the child(ren)/youth and family. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Harm Statement/Statement of Allegations: Past Action by a caregiver/youth that have hurt and/or impacted the child/vulnerable adult/community physically, developmentally, or emotionally.
- Child Protection Harm Statement Formula: Who reported--what caregiver action/inaction---impact on the child.
- Probation Harm Statement Formula: Who reported--what youth action/inaction--- impact on the youth/victim/community.
Health Care Provider: A general term used to identify a health care facility and/or medical professional (e.g., physician, nurse, physician’s assistant) providing, directing, supervising or recommending a schedule of medical services to or on behalf of an individual. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Hospital Review Committee (HRC): An entity established to deal with medical and ethical dilemmas arising in the care of patients within a hospital or health care facility. Where they exist, HRC may take many organizational forms, such as an "infant care review committee” or an "institutional bioethics committee." (Child Protection)
High Risk Behaviors : Behaviors which place a child at risk of contracting or transmitting Viral Hepatitis, Human Immunodeficiency Virus, or sexually transmitted infections by the following (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services):
- Sexual intercourse with an infected person(s) or person(s) at high risk of infection, to include injection drug users and persons infected with STIs;
- Exposure to infected blood or blood-derived products;
- Multiple sexual partners;
- Sharing needles or other injection paraphernalia with injection drug users;
- Sharing needles or other equipment such as rinse water, body piercing, tattooing, injecting insulin or any other inject able prescription drug. These activities may cause exposure to infected blood;
- Use of alcohol or other drugs can result in increased risk taking.
Human/Labor Trafficking: the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining labor services through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.
Imminent Danger: Includes threatened harm and means a statement, overt act, condition or status which represents an immediate and substantial risk of sexual abuse or physical or mental injury, even when there are no signs of injury. (Child Protection/Adult Protection)
Immediate Response: Involves in-person contact occurring immediately (Immediate - at that moment and made no later than 24 hours after receipt of the report) with the alleged victim and/or family when the report alleges any of the criteria listed in CPS or APS Rules. (See CPS Rules Chapter 2 or the APS Rules, Chapter 2). (Adult/Child Protection)
Inactive Referral Status: Status requested by a foster home so they are not contacted about taking new placements. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Independent and Transitional Living Services- services to assist a youth transition to self- sufficiency by providing Chafee funded services such as assistance in obtaining a high school diploma, career exploration, training in daily living skills, training in budgeting and financial management skills, substance abuse prevention, and preventive health activities
Indian Child: An unmarried person who is under age 18 years old and is a member of or eligible for membership in an Indian tribe and is the biological child of a member of an Indian tribe. It should be noted that ICWA applies to children who are members of or eligible for membership only in federally recognized tribes and Alaska native villages and corporations. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA): A federal law which regulates child custody placement proceedings involving Indian children and mandates preventive services before removal. Child custody proceeding does not include placement resulting from an act, if committed by an adult, would be deemed a crime. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Indian custodian: Any Indian person who has legal custody of an Indian child under tribal law or custom or under state law or to whom temporary physical care, custody, and control has been transferred by the parent of the child. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA): law ensuring services to children with disabilities throughout the nation. IDEA governs how states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education and related services to more than 6.5 million eligible infants, toddlers, children and youth with disabilities. ❖ Individualized Education Program (IEP): a written statement for each child with a disability that is developed, reviewed, and revised in a meeting. ❖ Surrogate: Each public agency must ensure that the rights of a child are protected by determining the need for, and assigning, a surrogate parent whenever:
- No parent (as newly defined at 34 CFR 300.30) can be identified;
- The public agency, after reasonable efforts, cannot locate a parent;
- The child is a ward of the State under the laws of that State; or
- The child is an unaccompanied homeless youth as defined in section 725(6) of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11434a(6)).
- The surrogate parent alternatively may be appointed by the judge overseeing the child’s case, provided that the surrogate meets the requirements in 34 CFR 300.519(d)(2)(i) and (e).
- A surrogate parent may not be an employee of the State educational agency (SEA), the local educational agency (LEA), or any other agency that is involved in the education or care of the child but that a person otherwise qualified to be a surrogate parent under the IDEA.
Infant: A child less than one year of age. These procedures neither imply that treatment should be changed or discontinued when an infant reaches one year of age, nor affect or limit existing protections under state laws regarding medical neglect of children over one year of age. (Child Protection)
Initiate: When a report is received by the local office, the report is considered initiated and the time lines begin when collateral contacts are initiated and contact is attempted with the victim and the alleged perpetrator. (Adult/Child Protection)
Injection Drug Users (IDUs): Any person who inserts by needle any illegally acquired or un- prescribed drug into his/her own or someone else’s body.
Injunction: An order granted by a court of proper jurisdiction whereby one person or agency is required to do or refrain from doing a specified act. (Adult Protection)
Injury: Any harm, including disfigurement, impairment of any bodily organ, skin bruising, laceration, bleeding, burn, fracture or dislocation of any bone, subdural hematoma, malnutrition, dehydration or pressure sores. (Adult/Child Protection)
Institutional Child/Vulnerable Abuse and Neglect: Situations of child or vulnerable abuse or neglect where a foster home or other public or private residential home, institution, facility or agency is responsible for the child’s welfare. Institutional Child Abuse and Neglect may include, but is not limited to (Child Protection):
- Facility abuse and/or neglect as a result of social or institutional policies, practices or conditions;
- Child abuse and/or neglect committed by an employee of a public or private institution or group home against a child in the institution or group home.
Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs): The basic tasks that are essential (instrumental) to living independently in a community (e.g. paying bills, preparing meals, shopping, using the telephone, cleaning house, laundering). Tasks do not involve personal care. (See also Activities of Daily Living ADLs)
Intake: The process of identifying cases of vulnerable adult/child neglect and abuse. It refers to all activities which must be performed to receive reports alleging adult/child maltreatment, assess whether the report meets the definition of adult/child abuse or neglect, determines the Department’s response, the urgency of the response, and begin to assess the safety of the adult/child(ren). Track assignment shall be completed within twenty-four (24) hours of receipt of intake. Allegations of abuse or neglect may be received from any source. (Adult/Child Protection)
Intake: Careful detailed work which lays the foundation for making well-informed decisions throughout the life of a case. The quality and consistency of information gathered at this stage directly impact subsequent interventions. (Juvenile Services)
Intensive Family Foster Care (IFFC): Type of foster home certification which is different from specialized foster care as far as the number and variety of therapeutic services provided to the child and foster family. The requirements for IFFC are the same as for specialized foster care with additional requirements as specified in policy. Receives foster care maintenance payment at a specialized rate.
Intensive Supervision Program (ISP): A Court sanctioned, objective-based supervision strategy consisting of three graduated levels designed to focus on public safety, offender accountability, and long-term behavioral change. It is a balanced approach to supervision that involves a full range of community resources including, the offender’s family, treatment professionals, educators/employers, and additional resources targeted solely toward Wyoming Boys’ School and Wyoming Girls’ School bound youth. (Juvenile Services)
Intensive Supervision Program Agreement: The form that outlines ISP requirements. This form is signed by both the ISP participant and the ISP Officer. (Juvenile Services)
Intentional: A conscious and deliberate attempt to inflict harm, injury or intimidation
Intermediate Sanction(s): A graduated continuum of restrictions to be implemented in lieu of revocation when an individual violates his/her program conditions.( Juvenile Services)
Interstate Compact on Adoption and Medical Assistance (ICAMA): ICAMA was established to ensure that adopted children subject to an adoption subsidy agreement moving across state lines receive medical and other services. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Interstate Compact on Juveniles (ICJ): A federal law which provides the mechanism to effect and regulate the movement of a juvenile across state lines while serving the ends of justice, the welfare of the youth and the protection of the community. The Compact has been adopted by every state to provide uniform procedures to permit the return of juveniles who run away and a system under which juvenile offenders can be supervised in other states. Wyoming enacted legislation in 1957, W.S. 14-6-101, Articles I to XVI, and became a member state shortly thereafter. (Juvenile Services)
The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC): ICPC is an agreement among all the states which provides a process to move children across state lines for the purposes of foster care and/or adoption while protecting their safety. It is also used to place children into Residential Treatment Centers. The Compact has been adopted by every state to establish orderly procedures for placement of minors and to fix responsibility for those involved in that placement. Wyoming enacted legislation in 1965, W.S. 14-5-101 through 14-5-108, and became a member state shortly thereafter. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Intervention: An action taken by DFS on behalf of or with a child(ren)/youth, adult, and family having an open case with the department.
Intimidation: The communication by word or act to a vulnerable adult that he, his family, friends or pets will be deprived of food, shelter, clothing, supervision, prescribed medication, physical or mental health care and other medical care necessary to maintain a vulnerable adult. (Adult Protection)
Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI): The goal of Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative is to eliminate the inappropriate use of juvenile detention through alternatives to incarceration. Implemented by the Annie E. Casey Foundation (AECF) utilizing eight core strategies. Wyoming distanced itself from AECF regarding JDAI in 2010 however Wyoming still replicates practices regarding the eight core strategies. (Juvenile Services)
Juvenile Detention Risk Assessment (JDRA): The assessment used by law enforcement when citing a juvenile or taking a juvenile into custody. This assessment helps the law enforcement official make an educated decision on whether to detain the juvenile, release to a parent/custodian, or to place the juvenile in a detention alternative. (Juvenile Services)
Juvenile Assessment: The juvenile risk assessment tool used by DFS JS probation officers to assess youth’s level of risk to re-offend.
Kin/Kinship (Affinity): Individuals whom the child/youth, family or individual recognizes as "family" and who may or may not be related by blood, marriage or adoption. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services/Adult Protection) Also refer to Affinity and Relative
Kinship Care: Individuals whom the child/youth, family or individual recognizes as "family" and who may or may not be related by blood, marriage or adoption. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services) Also refer to Affinity and Kin/Kinship
Lack of Supervision: Any act or omission resulting in harm or potential harm to a child(ren) due to inadequate supervision, including putting a child(ren) in a situation that requires judgment or actions beyond the child(ren)'s level of maturity, physical condition, or mental abilities that results in bodily injury or the likelihood of harm to the child(ren). (Child Protection) Any act or omission resulting in harm or potential harm to a vulnerable adult who is in their home or placed in a group home or facility.
Least restrictive: The placement of a child(ren) at a level of care where the child(ren)’s treatment and safety needs can be met while still providing the most integrated services and community setting possible. The recommended placement is in the family home or a home- like setting in the closest proximity to the child(ren)’s family’s current living arrangement. Least restrictive also means making a placement decision that gives consideration to the families financial and transportation situation, as well as their ability to visit frequently. This provides the opportunity for the family to participate in the child(ren)’s treatment plan. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Least Restrictive Intervention: Acquiring or providing services, including protective services, for the shortest duration and to the minimum extent necessary to remedy or prevent situations of actual mistreatment, abandonment or self neglect.
Legal Custody: A legal status created by court order which vests in the custodian the right to have physical custody of a minor, the right and duty to protect, train and discipline a minor, the duty to provide him/her with food, shelter, clothing, ordinary medical care, education and in an emergency, the right and duty to authorize surgery or other extraordinary medical care. The rights and duties of legal custody are subject to the rights and duties of the guardian of the person of the minor and to residual parental rights and duties. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Child Placing Agency (Licensed). Any entity that arranges for the placement or temporary care, maintenance, and supervision of children in a place other than the home of their parents or relatives. A CPA recruits, train, approves and provides oversight for its own foster homes. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Local Office: The nearest office of the Department through which Department programs and services are administered
Long-Term Group Home Care: In order to pay for long-term care, there must be a court order stipulating the child(ren) be placed at a group home. The child(ren) must also be placed into DFS custody. Basic rates for maintenance and services vary and are approved and negotiated by/with the State Department of Family Services Financial Services Division. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Major Injury: Any harm, including disfigurement, impairment of any bodily organ, skin bruising, laceration, bleeding, burn, fracture or dislocation of any bone, subdural hematoma, malnutrition, dehydration or pressure sores.
- Major injuries include:
a) Major burns, central nervous system injury, abdominal injury, multiple fractures or any life threatening abuse.
b) Major injuries also include inflicted injuries or neglect which require hospitalization for treatment.
Major Life Activities: The functions such as, but not limited to, breathing, seeing, hearing, walking, caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, learning and working. (Adult/Child Protection)
Maltreatment: An act or omission that threatens the health, safety or welfare of a vulnerable adult or child, or which exposed the adult/child to a situation or conditions that poses an imminent risk of death or serious bodily injury.
Medical Care Neglect: The refusal or failure to obtain and maintain treatment services necessary as determined by a licensed physician or dentist, placing a child(ren)’s health at substantial risk (Child Protection)(CPS Rules, Chapter I, Section 4(s)(ii.)).
- Failure to Thrive (FTT): is generally a medical diagnosis used to describe a growth rate or pattern. The caseworker role is to gather the social history, seek the medical evaluation, and assist with a treatment plan.
- Organic FTT is when clear-cut medical reason accounts for the poor growth.
- Non-organic, or psychosocial FTT is described as growth failure related to parent-child(ren) pattern of interaction that fails to meet the child(ren)’s nutritional needs. Most cases of FTT are a combination of organic and non- organic causes that combine to form a “mixed” type of FTT.
- Nutritional Deprivation: is underfeeding (caloric deprivation) causes over fifty percent (50%) of the cases of failure to thrive (underweight) in infancy.
➢ This is usually documented by a weight gain in the hospital of over two (2) ounces per day sustained for at least a week;
➢ A smaller gain is diagnostic if it far surpasses the gain during an equivalent period of time at home;
➢ These cases do not include failure to thrive secondary to organic causes or a feeding error.
➢ The following physical characteristics may be evidence of FTT include but not limited to:
- ❖ The child(ren) is thin and emaciated;
- ❖ The child(ren)’s height is below the one third (1/3) percentile for his age and birth weight;
- ❖ Cold, dull, pale, and mottled skin is characteristic;
- ❖ The child(ren) is apathetic and withdrawn, avoiding personal contact and not responding emotionally or verbally, may avoid eye contact or have a staring gaze;
- ❖ The child(ren) may have short temper tantrums;
- ❖ Many appear to be insensitive to pain and have self-inflicted injuries;
- ❖ Some are encopretic and enuretic;
- ❖ Insomnia and disrupted sleep are common;
- ❖ Some eat and drink inappropriate substances (garbage, toilet bowel water, pet food).
- Withholding needed medical treatment from infants with disabilities, often referred to as Baby Doe, and is prohibited. Withholding medical treatment means failure to respond to the infant's life threatening conditions by providing treatment which, in the treating physician's reasonable medical judgment, will most likely improve or correct such conditions. Appropriate nutrition, hydration and medication (palliative care) shall be provided in all cases.
- Providing treatment to infants with disabilities is not required when, in the physician's reasonable medical judgment, any of the following circumstances exist:
- The infant is chronically and irreversibly comatose;
- Provision of treatment would merely prolong dying; or
- Provision of treatment would be virtually futile in terms of the infant's survival and the treatment itself would be inhumane.
Medicaid Facilities: Freestanding psychiatric residential treatment centers have been accredited by CARF, COA, and JCAHO and have not been licensed as a hospital. Admissions must meet “medical necessity” criteria and pre-authorization, among other Medicaid rules. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Mental Disability: A condition causing mental dysfunction resulting in an inability to manage resources, carry out the activities of daily living or protect oneself from neglect, abuse, exploitation or hazardous situations without assistance from others. Whether or not a mental dysfunction of such degree exists is subject to an evaluation by a licensed psychologist, psychiatrist or other qualified licensed mental health professional or licensed physician, if disputed. (Adult Protection)
Mental Injury: An injury to the psychological capacity or emotional stability of a child as evidenced by an observable or substantial impairment in his ability to function within a normal range of performance and behavior with due regard to his culture (Emotional/Psychological Abuse) (Child Protection)
Motivational Interview (MI): A client-centered, directive interview method for enhancing intrinsic motivation to change by exploring and resolving ambivalence.
Multidisciplinary Team (MDT): A court-ordered team whose responsibility is to provide recommendations to the court for the purpose of making service planning decisions. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Munchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy: An abusive parenting disorder in which the parent or caretaker relates fictitious illnesses in the child by either inducing or fabricating the signs or symptoms. (Child Protection)
Neglect: The deprivation of, or failure to provide, the minimum food, shelter, clothing, supervision, physical and mental health care, other care and prescribed medication as necessary to maintain a vulnerable adult’s life or health, or which may result in a life- threatening situation. The withholding of health care from a vulnerable adult is not neglect if (Adult Protection):
- Treatment is given in good faith by spiritual means alone, through prayer, by a duly accredited practitioner in accordance with the tenets and practices of a recognized church or religious denomination; or
- The withholding of health care is in accordance with a declaration executed pursuant to Wyo. Stats. §§ 35-22-401 through 35-22-416.
- Care is provided by a hospice licensed in accordance with and pursuant to Wyo. Stats. §§ 35-2-901 through 35-2-910.
Neglect: As related to a child means a failure or refusal by those responsible for the child’s welfare to provide adequate care, food, clothing, safe shelter, maintenance, supervision, guidance, education, medical care, surgery, or any other care necessary for a child’s well- being. Treatment given in good faith by spiritual means alone, through prayer, by a duly accredited practitioner in accordance with the tenets and practices of a recognized church or religious denominations is not child neglect for that reason alone. Neglect may include, but is not limited to “Educational Neglect” and “Medical Care Neglect.” (Child Protection) (CPS Rules, Chapter I, Section 4 (s)).
Next of Kin: (Adult Protective Services) is the vulnerable adult’s spouse, closest adult child, closest adult sibling, or closest adult grandchild, or, in the case of younger vulnerable adults, the adult’s parent.
Noncustodial Parent: A biological parent not residing in the home who may or may not have legal custody of the child. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Non-Relative Family Foster Care: Type of foster home certification. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Non-Therapeutic Group Home: Twenty-four (24) hour awake supervision for child(ren) who are unable to return to their homes and who respond better to a group situation than a family placement and who attend their neighborhood school who have minor or no identified mental health or substance abuse treatment needs. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Nursing Facility Care: A level of care provided in a licensed facility for individual who require nursing services as well as personal care and supervision.
Offender/ISP Participant: A juvenile, court placed on supervised probation and identified as high risk/high need by the Department. (Juvenile Services)
Older Americans Act (OAA): The federal legislation, enacted originally in 1965, that supported planning and development of certain services for people age 60 and older, regardless of economic status. These services have included, for example, community services employment, congregated and home delivered meals and a variety of other home and community services.
OPPLA/APPLA- Other Planned Permanent Living Arrangement: Refer to APPLA
Parent: the legal guardian or custodian of the minor, his/her natural parent or if the minor has been legally adopted, the adoptive parent; including mother and father (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)-
- Absent parent - a biological parent (non-custodial) not residing in the home;
- Acknowledged father - a man who has legally established a father-child relationship;
- Adjudicated father - a man who has been adjudicated by a court of competent jurisdiction to be the father of a child;
- Alleged father - a man who alleges himself to be, or is alleged to be, the genetic father or a possible genetic father of a child, but whose paternity has not been determined. (Family Service plan, Diligent Search)
- The following may constitute proof that the person is the legal father:
- Birth certificate listing person as father;
- Order from court establishing paternity; or
- Signed and notarized acknowledgement of paternity from individual.
- The following may constitute proof that the person is the legal father:
- Presumed Father (W.S. § 14-2-402(a (xv)) - a man who was married to the mother of the child on the date the child was born; the man and the mother were married to each other and the child is born within 300 days after divorce/annulment; or the man resided in the same household with the child for the first two years of the child’s life and openly held out the child as his own.
Permanency: An individualized, most appropriate, permanent home for the child, including but not limited to family reunification, relatives, adoption, guardianship, or APPLA. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Person Responsible for a Child's Welfare: Includes the child's parent, noncustodial parent, guardian, custodian, stepparent, foster parent or other person, institution or agency having the physical custody or control of the child. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Personal Representative: An adult person with legal authority to make health care decisions on behalf of the individual. Examples are a health care power of attorney, court appointed legal guardian, general power of attorney, durable power of attorney or an executor of an estate on behalf of someone deceased.
Physical Abuse -Non-accidental traumas which are deliberate physical injuries inflicted by parent(s), caretaker(s) or baby-sitter(s) or physical injuries resulting from indifference, negligence or improper supervision. The injuries can be:
- Numerous significant bruises; Minor and major burns;
- Single and multiple fracture(s);
- Central nervous system injury;
- Abdominal injury;
- Injuries to the genital area;
- Any life threatening abuse;
- In its extreme, the result is death;
- Major injuries also include inflicted injuries or neglect which require hospitalization for treatment;
- Kicking and hitting a child with a closed fist;
- Use of an instrument to strike a child and causing significant bruising and /or major injuries;
- Rough-handling, spanking, yanking or pushing causing significant bruising and/or injuries;
- Even when there are no signs of injury, an incident that resulted in imminent danger, but does not result in injury to the child(ren), is physical abuse. Acts which constitute a serious risk to a child(ren)’s physical or mental health, safety or welfare include, but are not limited to:
- Severely shaking a child(ren) five (5) years of age or younger
- Choking, gagging or interfering with a child(ren)’s breathing;
- Banging a child(ren)’s head against a wall or other object;
- Electric shock;
- Using physical discipline on an infant;
- The reckless use of lethal weapons in the proximity of a child(ren);
- DUI arrest with a child(ren) in the vehicle;
- A baby born with a controlled substance in his/her body as documented and reported by a medical professional.
- A violation of Wyo. Stat. §6-4-405, endangering child(ren) controlled substances.
Physical Injury: Any harm to a child/adult including but not limited to disfigurement, impairment of any bodily organ, skin bruising if greater in magnitude than minor bruising associated with reasonable corporal punishment, bleeding, burns, and fracture of any bone, subdural hematoma or substantial malnutrition. “Physical Injury” is also known as "Physical Abuse.")
- Non-accidental traumas: Refer to Physical Abuse/Physical Injury Deliberate physical injuries inflicted by parents, caretaker or baby-sitter or physical injuries resulting from indifference, negligence or improper supervision. The injuries can be rated as: Mild injuries: a few bruises, welts, scratches, cuts, scars.
- Moderate injuries: numerous bruises, minor burns, a single fracture
- Major injuries include:
- Major burns, central nervous system injury, abdominal injury, multiple fractures or any life threatening abuse.
- Major injuries also include inflicted injuries or neglect which require hospitalization for treatment.
Physical Custody or Control: Having responsibility for the health and welfare of a child with the knowledge and/or consent of the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the child. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Physical Disability: Any condition which would limit a person in their ability to independently manage resources, carry out activities of daily living, or carry out independent activities of daily living. (Adult Protection)
Policy Overrides. After completing the risk assessment, WYCAPS will score the entries. The caseworker determines whether any of the policy override reasons exist. Policy overrides reflect incident seriousness and/or child(ren) vulnerability concerns and have been determined to warrant a risk level designation of very high regardless of the risk level indicated by the risk assessment tool. Policy overrides are entered into WYCAPS and require supervisor approval.
Portfolio: A packet or Life Story Book that contains personal information about the child(ren)/youth. The packet should contain:
- Certified birth certificate.
- Identification card and/or driver’s license
- Placement history.
- A brief summary of how, when and why the child(ren)/youth first came into foster care, and why he or she is there now.
- A court order stating that DFS had custody of child(ren)/youth through his/her 18th birthday or a court document indicating an adoption or guardianship was established.
- School history.
- Medical records.
- Family health history.
- Social Security card and other benefits.
- Personal mementos: pictures, letters, baptismal certificate, awards and other mementos from case files or foster parents, including family members' names and whereabouts.
- Work history: resume or jobs held and vocational training received
- Change of address card
- Credit Reports (if applicable) for youth age 14 years or older
- Tribal registration (Family Service Plan, Independent Living, Family Foster Care
- Life book(s).
Preponderance of the Evidence: The standard of proof which is met when evidence, based on the facts, indicates that it is more likely than not the child(ren)/vulnerable adult was abused or neglected (CPS Rules, Chapter 1, Section 4(k)). (Adult/Child Protection)
Presumed Father (W.S. § 14-2-402(a (xv)) : A man who was married to the mother of the child on the date the child was born; the man and the mother were married to each other and the child is born within 300 days after divorce/annulment; or the man resided in the same household with the child for the first two years of the child’s life and openly held out the child as his own.
Preventive Services: An accepted referral where there are no allegations of abuse or neglect, but there are identified risk factors that might indicate the need for services to prevent abuse or neglect. (Adult/Child Protection)
Probation: A legal status created by court order following an adjudication of delinquency or of a status offense where a child is permitted to remain in his home subject to supervision by a city or county probation officer, the department or other qualified private organization the court may designate. A child is subject to return to the court for violation of the terms or conditions of probation provided for in the court order
Professional Reporter: An individual whose vocation or employment requires specialized knowledge and training such as a member of the staff of a medical or other public or private institution, facility or agency. (Adult/Child Protection)
Program Analyst: The DFS state office staff member whose duties include the provision of consultation and technical assistance in specific program areas (i.e., child protection, adult protection, foster care, private residential programs, etc.) to local DFS office personnel, providers, and clients.
Protective Actions: Actions or behaviors of the caregiver that begin to mitigate the danger but have not been demonstrated over time.
Protective Services: Emergency services provided by the Department to assist vulnerable adults to prevent or terminate abuse, neglect, exploitation, intimidation or abandonment until the vulnerable adult no longer needs those services. These services may include social casework, case management, emergency, short term in home services such as homemaker, personal care or chore services.es consistent with the Adult Protective Services Act, Wyo. Stats. §§ 35-20-102 through 35-20-116. (Adult Protection)
Protective Services Agency (DFS): The state, district or regional offices of the Department of Family Services which includes Adult Protection, Child Protection, Adoption, Foster Care, and Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children and Juvenile Services.
Protective Supervision: A legal status created by court order following an adjudication of neglect, whereby the child is permitted to remain in his home subject to supervision by the department of family services, a county or state probation officer or other qualified agency or individual the court may designate
Protected Health Information (PHI) means any individually identifiable health information, whether oral or recorded in any form or medium that is created for or received by a covered entity and relates to the past, present, or future physical or mental health or condition of an individual; the provision of healthcare to an individual; or the past, present or future payment for the provision of healthcare to an individual. Examples include all oral communication, computer screen print-outs, faxed documents, hard copy birth or death certificates, paper records or printed e-mails that have identified individual’s health information, claim or billing information.
Provider: DFS provider: 24-hour substitute care for children placed away from their parents or guardians and for whom DFS has placement and care responsibility (i.e., foster care, group home, residential treatment center). (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Psychological/Emotional Abuse: an injury to the psychological capacity or emotional stability of a child as evidenced by an observable or substantial impairment in his ability to function within a normal range of performance and behavior with due regard to his culture. “Psychological and Emotional Abuse” is also known as “Mental Injury.”
No Terms At This Time
Reasonable and Prudent Parent Standard: The careful and sensible parental decisions that maintain the health, safety, well-being and best interests of a child(ren)/youth while encouraging the emotional and developmental growth of the child(ren)/youth. The standard allows foster parents to make certain decisions regarding a child in their care when following state statutes and policy requirements.
Reasonable efforts: The term "reasonable" generally means fair, proper, just, moderate, or suitable under the circumstances. Reasonable efforts means doing what is reasonable; it does not mean doing everything that is possible.
Recklessly: A person who consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that the harm he/she is accused of causing will occur, and the harm results. The risk shall be of such nature and degree that disregarding it constitutes a gross deviation from the standard of conduct that a reasonable person would observe in the situation.
Relative: Individuals of specified degree who had a legal relationship with the child at the time the child entered care, as follows (Child Protection/Juvenile Services):
- Any blood relative (including adult siblings) or half blood relative, including persons of preceding generations denoted by the prefixes of grand, great or great-great who is related to the child through the biological or adoptive mother or the legal or adoptive father of the child.
- Aunts, uncles, adult first cousins and adult first cousins once removed who are related to the child through the biological or adoptive mother or the legal or adoptive father of the child.
- Stepparent(s) or ex-stepparents who had a personal relationship with the child prior to the child entering foster care.
- Adoptive parents of the sibling of the child or persons who have been designated the adoptive resource for a sibling of the child, and the adult biological and adopted children of the adoptive or designated adoptive parents.
- Also refer to Affinity, Kin/Kinship, IV-E definition of Relative
Relative Foster Care: Relative Family Foster Care – Issued to individual(s) who are related by blood, marriage or adoption to the child(ren)/youth in care and who is/are solely interested in caring for their own relative(s). Foster care maintenance payment rate is the same as for non-relative family foster care.
Relative Foster Care (Certified/Non IV-E Eligible): The approval process is similar to Family Foster Care, except the requirement to complete PRIDE training has been waived. Since the relative is not considered fully certified, IV-E reimbursement is not allowed. Foster care payment is the same as family foster care. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Relative Care (Non Certified/Non IV-E Eligible): Relative care that is not considered to be certified and as a result, are not qualified to receive a foster care maintenance payment. Families providing relative care may receive a caretaker-relative POWER payment and medical coverage for the child(ren)/youth. The relative(s) must meet certain minimum requirements. Per WS 14-3-208, no adult household member living in the home may have been convicted of a crime involving serious harm to children or have a substantiated case listed on the Central Registry established pursuant to W.S. 14-3-213. (If the child(ren) is in DFS custody, reviews, case plans, minimum contact, etc., are still required.) (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Residential Treatment Facility: In order to pay for residential care, there must be a court order stipulating that the child(ren)be placed at a residential level of care. Basic rates for maintenance and services vary and are approved and negotiated by/with the State Department of Family Services Financial Services Division. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Residual Parental Rights And Duties: Those rights and duties remaining with the parents after custody, guardianship of the person or both have been vested in another person, agency or institution. Residual parental rights and duties include but are not limited to:
- The duty to support and provide necessities of life;
- The right to consent to adoption;
- The right to reasonable visitation unless restricted or prohibited by court order;
- The right to determine the minor's religious affiliation; and
- The right to petition on behalf of the minor.
Resources: Having access to or the ability to pay for community services or programs.
Respite Care: A family support service offered to foster families. Respite care is typically one foster family caring for the foster children of another foster family to give them a short break. Respite can enhance the treatment and care of children in foster care and prevent unnecessary placement disruptions due to foster parent exhaustion and burnout. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services) Respite is also available for adults under the emergency services policy.
Risk Assessment: A process and an instrument used by the caseworker which considers the likelihood of subsequent abuse or neglect.
Risk-Control Strategies: A planned means of monitoring an offender’s activities through individualized curfews, electronic monitoring, weekly itineraries, and various contacts with ISP Officer(s). (Juvenile Services)
Runaway: A juvenile who has run away from his/her home without the consent of parent, guardian, person or agency entitled to his/her legal custody or supervision. (Juvenile Services)
The Safe and Timely Interstate Placement of Foster Children Act of 2006: (P.L. 109-239) A federal law which became effective October 1, 2006 federally and in the State of Wyoming. The law amends Titles IV-B and IV-E of the Social Security Act, encourages States to improve protections for children and holds them accountable for the safe and timely placement of children across State lines. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Safety: Actions of protection taken by the caregiver that mitigate the danger and are demonstrated over time.
Safety Assessment: The process focusing on identifying threats of harm, evaluating their potential severity, assessing the vulnerability of and adult/child(ren), determining the imminence of the threat, and identifying what protective capacities exist in the adult/child(ren)’s environment. (CPS Rules, Chapter 1) (Adult/Child Protection)
Safety For A Newborn (Safe Haven): W.S. 14-11-101 thru 109 allows a parent or parent’s designee who expresses intent not to return to voluntarily relinquish an infant 14 days old or younger to the physical custody persons at a fire station, hospital or police department/sheriff’s office.
Safety Plan - Detailed plan of action made in response to specifically identified danger that creates clear and observable guidelines regarding the potential danger and how the child/adult/community are to be protected. Identifies and implements specific ways of controlling threats to safety. A safety plan shall become part of the case plan for vulnerable adult/child(ren)/families who are receiving services or have a substantiated allegation of abuse or neglect.
Scored Risk Level: A score for each assessment item is derived from the caseworker’s observation of the characteristics described in the tool. Some characteristics are very objective (such as prior child(ren) abuse/neglect history or the age of the child(ren)), while others require the caseworker to use discretionary judgment based on his or her assessment of the family. Sources of information used to determine the caseworker’s endorsement of an item may include statements by the child(ren), caretaker, or collateral contacts, caseworker observations, reports, or other reliable sources. (Adult/Child Protection) (CPS Rules, Chapter 1, Section 4(z)).
Self-neglect: When a vulnerable adult is unable, due to physical or mental disability, or refuses to perform essential self-care tasks, including providing essential food, clothing, shelter, or medical care, obtaining goods and services necessary to maintain physical health, mental health, emotional well-being and general safety, or managing financial affairs. (Adult Protection)
Selection of Services: The declaration of need of the child which when provided or purchased during the 180 days of eligibility for EA may alleviate the emergency. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
- The provision of services to a child is not dependent on eligibility for the EA or IV E program;
- The federal programs are a funding source only when the child is qualified (determined eligible);
- Ineligibility for either program is not a denial of needed services.
- Understand the date in WYCAPS starts a 30-day time period within which services can be selected which may be purchased or provided during the 180-day eligibility period.
Service provision - The set of activities and the relationships you bring into play to address safety and help the vulnerable adult/child(ren)/youth/families control and manage their lives. Services provided should be least intrusive as possible. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Sexual abuse: Sexual contact including, but not limited to, unwanted touching, all types of sexual assault or battery as defined in W.S. 6-2-302 through 6-2-304, sexual exploitation and sexual photographing (Adult Protection)
Sexual Abuse: In the case of a child means the commission or allowing the commission of a sexual offense against the child as defined by law, which includes any sexual contact or sexual exploitation of a child by parents, caretakers, siblings, or other adults or children living in the home. (Child Protection) (CPS Rules, Chapter 1, Section 4(cc)):
- There are three components to consider in evaluating the child suspected of having been sexually abused:
➢ The history or the child’s statement of what happened;
➢ A behavioral assessment, which assesses the behavioral patterns of the child, and then comparing them with the behavioral indicators typical of abused children, and then deciding which indicators the child is demonstrating, their importance, and their specificity;
➢ The physical examination.
Alert: Neither the physical examination nor the behavioral indicators should be considered separately as evidence; they can only support the history given by the child.
Sex Trafficking: The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining, patronizing, or soliciting of a person for the purpose of a commercial sex act. Sex trafficking in which Commercial sexual act is induced to perform such act through the use of force, fraud, or coercion.
Sexually Transmitted Infections: Infections that are often or usually passed from one person to another during sexual or intimate contact.
Smoke Free: An environment where secondhand smoke is not ingested by another individual on the premises. (Foster Care)
Solution Focused Inquiry: A practice of using questions and having conversations that strengthen an individual or family’s capacity to achieve their own best judgement in difficult times by surfacing and making visible people’s past and present capacities (how they survived trauma), achievements, assets, networks of support, unexplored potentials, innovations, strengths, values, traditions, and visions of valued and possible futures.
Special Investigators: Designated DFS staff specially trained to conduct special investigations. (Adult/Child Protection)
Specialized Family Foster Care: Designation for specially trained and certified foster family homes for a child(ren)/youth with documented treatment needs who can live in a family setting but require a higher level of care from foster parent(s) with special skills. The objective is to avoid having to place the child(ren)/youth in a more restrictive and more costly residential treatment facilities. Of paramount importance is that the child(ren)/youth lives as close to home as possible and within a family setting. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Specialized Foster Care: Payments are established on the rate schedule of July 1, 2006 to accommodate child(ren) with special needs as identified in policy.
Staffing: A review of strengths/issues/problems regarding a particular case with a Supervisor, a County Manager and/or other Officer(s).
Status Offense: An offense which, if committed by an adult, would not constitute an act punishable as a criminal offense by the laws of this state or a violation of a municipal ordinance, but does not include a violation of W.S. 12-6-101(b) or (c).
Substantiated report (Adult Protection): Any report of abandonment abuse, exploitation, intimidation, or neglect pursuant to Wyo. Stats. §§ 35-20-101 through 35-20-116 that is determined upon investigation to establish that credible evidence of the alleged abandonment abuse, neglect, exploitation or abandonment exists.
Substantiated Report: any report of child abuse or neglect made pursuant to W.S. 14-3-201 through 14-3-216 that, upon investigation, is supported by a preponderance of the evidence
Substantial Risk: A strong possibility as contrasted with a remote or insignificant possibility. (Adult/Child Protection)
Supervision Strategies: A graduated continuum of supervision, rewards and intermediate sanctions to provide a balance of intervention, surveillance and enforcement. (Juvenile Services)
Support Network (family partner(s)): Refer to Family Conference
Team Leader: The person assigned to be the lead special investigator. The team leader is responsible for the coordination of all notifications and activities associated with the special investigation. The team leader is responsible for preparing the report of the investigation. (Adult/Child Protection)
Therapeutic Foster Care: Foster family-based services provided to a severely emotionally disturbed child(ren) in a specially trained family as an alternative to services provided in an institutional setting. Eligibility for this Medicaid service is limited to a child(ren) who cannot be maintained in the individual’s own home and where foster parents are given clinical training and supervision to deal with the child(ren) placed with them. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Transitioning: Helping to reduce the trauma caused by the placement process and to build familiarity with the substitute living arrangement through a series of visits. Transitioning is limited to the degree of risk to the child(ren)’s safety. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Transportation: To convey the child from one place to another by the custodian or someone acting on his behalf in the performance of required duties, but does not require the state to provide incidental travel or to purchase a motor vehicle for the child's own use to travel. (Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Trauma: A deeply disturbing experience that may be;
- Acute: a single traumatic event that is limited in time
- Chronic: experience of ongoing or multiple traumatic events
- Complex: both the exposure to chronic trauma and the complex impact of such exposure
Unsubstantiated Report: Any report of adult/child abuse or neglect which is determined, after an investigation, is not supported by a preponderance of the evidence.
Violation(s): A behavior(s) contrary to Court ordered conditions or behavior contrary to the ISP Agreement. (Juvenile Services)
Visitation: The process of children/youth and families spending time together to maintain and build their relationship.
Vulnerable Adult: Any person eighteen (18) years of age or older who is unable to manage and take care of himself or his money, assets or property without assistance as a result of advanced age or physical or mental disability. (Adult Protection)
Weapons/Firearms - A weapon not limited to, a firearm, explosive or incendiary material, or other device, instrument, material or substance, which in the manner it is ordinarily used, or is ordinarily intended to be used, is reasonably capable of producing death or serious bodily injury. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
Ward: A person who had been adjudicated incompetent (lacks capacity) or for whom a guardian has been appointed by a court of competent jurisdiction
Withholding of medically indicated treatment: The failure to respond to the infant’s life threatening conditions by providing treatment which, in the treating physician’s reasonable medical judgment, will be most likely to be effective in ameliorating or correcting all such conditions. (Child Protection)
WYCAPS (Wyoming Children’s Assistance and Protection System): The automated case management system used by DFS employees. (Adult/Child Protection/Juvenile Services)
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