When a family receiving TANF indicates that they are receiving intact family services from DCFS:
- contact DCFS to determine what activities they are involved in;
- coordinate the DHS and DCFS service plans through staffings with DCFS to allow the client to cooperate with DCFS and move toward self-sufficiency; and
- maintain ongoing communication and planning with DCFS to ensure the client is assigned appropriate goals.
(DCFS) On an ongoing basis, completes a PACIS inquiry to see if a DCFS client is a TANF client. Inquiries are made:
- within one week of opening a new case, and
- 30 days prior to a 6-month desk review for an existing case.
If the client receives TANF, DCFS initiates a Referral Form (Form 2151) to the liaison at the DHS office.
(DHS) The DHS Family Community Resource Center liaison is the Assistant Family Community Resource Center Administrator (ALOA) responsible for TANF.
(DCFS) In Cook County, the DCFS liaison is the child protection manager. For downstate DCFS offices, the DCFS liaison is the field service manager.
When a family receiving TANF says they are working with DCFS:
- (FCRC Worker) Ask the client for the name of their DCFS caseworker. Tell the client that DHS and DCFS will work together to coordinate services/activities and to ensure that required activities are reasonable.
- (FCRC Worker) Notify the DCFS caseworker using the Referral Form (Form 2151). In the comments section, put the name of your Family Community Resource Center liaison as well as the statement "to confirm service currently provided by DCFS."
- (FCRC Worker) Forward the Referral Form to the DCFS caseworker and provide a copy to your Family Community Resource Center liaison, so they are aware DCFS will contact them about a mutually served case.
- (DCFS) Calls the Family Community Resource Center liaison within 2 workdays of receipt of the Referral Form to discuss the status of DCFS involvement with the family.
- (FCRC Liaison) Link the DCFS worker to the DHS caseworker.
- (FCRC Liaison) Complete the bottom portion of the Referral Form based on the phone call from DCFS.
- (FCRC Liaison) Provide a copy to the DHS caseworker.
- (FCRC) Immediately contact the DCFS caseworker to arrange a joint staffing to coordinate the RSP and the DCFS Service Plan.
- (FCRC) Place the completed Referral Form in the client's case record.
When DCFS identifies a client who receives TANF:
- (DCFS) Notifies the Family Community Resource Center liaison by sending the Referral Form.
- (FCRC Liaison) Refer the case to the appropriate DHS caseworker.
- (FCRC) Call the DCFS caseworker no later than 2 workdays following receipt of the Referral Form to discuss the status of the client's case and to arrange a joint staffing to coordinate the RSP and the DCFS Service Plan.
- (FCRC) Complete the bottom portion of the Referral Form.
- Retain a copy of the Referral Form for the client's case record.
- Provide a copy to the liaison in the DHS office.
Coordinating Service Plans - Staffings
(DCFS & FCRC) When scheduling a joint staffing, the DCFS and DHS caseworkers must attend. Invite and encourage the client to attend. Tell the client that their attendance and participation will aid in their success at
meeting their objectives. The staffing is to proceed even if the client does not attend.
Invite any other worker or service provider (such as TPS, substance abuse, mental health, domestic violence, work and training, etc.) who is working with the family to achieve the self-sufficiency goals.
During the staffing:
- (DCFS & FCRC) Determine activities required by DCFS to retain custody of the child(ren) such as attendance at specific classes, counseling sessions, administrative case reviews, etc. Consider and include these activities
along with activities leading to self-sufficiency when revising or developing an RSP.
- (DCFS & FCRC) Ensure work-related activities and parental activities do not conflict. The coordinated plan must include how conflict will be resolved.
- (FCRC) Don't schedule the client for times or activities which conflict with their DCFS obligations.
Example: A client may be participating in parenting classes from 9-12 on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays through DCFS. Do not schedule any activities for those times. However, the client could be expected to still make job contacts
and attend jobs meetings held on Tuesdays or Thursdays.
- (FCRC) Have the client sign the RSP, whether in attendance or not.
After the initial joint staffing, hold subsequent staffings when a family's situation changes. A staffing must occur anytime a family is in jeopardy of being sanctioned or having a child(ren) removed from the home.
Inform the DHS Family Community Resource Center liaison about all staffings and coordinated case planning activities with DCFS.
(FCRC Liaison) The Family Community Resource Center liaison with DCFS must:
- monitor the case to ensure that activities leading to a coordinated service plan are completed timely and appropriately;
- keep track of all DCFS/DHS coordinated activities; and
- resolve conflicts about the scheduling of meetings and disagreements between workers about the service plan.