Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Last, but not Least, DHS

The Department of Human Services, one of the most incompetent departments in state government, (in my opinion) is seeing a 10% increase in spending (on General Fund Spending) and an increase of 221 full-time employees. Overall, the budget increases by 2.7%.

The effort to privatize foster care failed. Progress was made in privatizing some of the juvenile justice services.

By the way, I do not fault the rank and file case workers in the department. Many, if not most of them do their best, but they work under poor conditions. They have bureaucratic leadership, terrible technology and red tape that makes their job very difficult to perform. There are too many chiefs and, as a result, not enough funding left for the important folks, the front line workers. Of the 221 new FTE's 150 are going to be caseworkers. I guess that means they need 71 more supervisors for the 150 caseworkers. Hmm...thats one supervisor for every two new workers. "Good enough for government work."


wolflady48884 said...

Some things never change and some people never learn. I worked for the State office of DSS, now DHS in the early 70s. They were top heavy with management then and I see nothing has changed. And until there is accountability they will never change.

I am not sure how I feel about privatization but 2 things I do know until something is done about workers who commit perjury and falsify reports to the court in abuse and neglect cases there is going to be an ever increasing need for more workers and children in foster care are going to continue to die, and until workers are required to have the proper education and training for the job and are licensed nothing is going to change other than it will continue to get worse.

Our state is number one in the country for terminating parental rights and number 7 in removing children and dead last in reunification of families. This must mean if you use these figures that Michigan parents are more abusive than parents in other states. I don't believe this for one moment but in order to maintain funding for private contracts the state must maintain close to 20,000 children in foster care at any given time to pay the contracts which are signed for 3-5 years out. And this has been the case for nearly 10 years.

Something needs to change but it won't because we must have those almighty Federal flowing to run this system.

DHS is the financial elephant in our livingrooms and no one is willing to do anything about it while they daily destroy and shred families and children.

Children are the fodder that feeds the bloated system. When will it ever end?

Anonymous said...

So Jack, what's the total? All I've seen from here (and elsewhere) are increases - where are the vaunted $400M in cuts? Of course, we know the answer - there aren't any. The RINOs caved and sold out the taxpayers, and now we'll continue to pay, and pay, and pay. As far as I'm concerned, we can't recall Ward, Gaffney, and the others fast enough. They should know better, but sold us down the river in anyway. I'm simply disgusted with the Michigan Republican Party generally (where is Saul in all this - silent as usual) and beyond disgusted at Mama Jenny and crew.

Anonymous said...

That is why the seasoned staff at DHS are the biggest promoters of the early retirement bill. They are just tired of it all. The front line staff and their managers get the most grief from the rest of the DHS administration. There are some good administrators but not they are few and far between.