If you become concerned that a child is being abused or neglected, please call the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline at 800-392-3738. If a child is in immediate danger, please contact 911 or local law enforcement first, then call the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline.
OCA is not a first responder agency for child abuse and neglect. When citizens are concerned that appropriate actions to protect a child or to provide needed services to children and their families are not being taken, OCA serves in an ombudsman capacity to investigate and evaluate whether appropriate action has been taken and whether or not an appropriate plan is in place to help resolve concerns with a family.
No. OCA operates under the Office of Administration and is independent of the Department of Social Services, Children’s Division, the Department of Mental Health, and the Juvenile Court.
Possibly. OCA provides oversight of open and unsubstantiated Children’s Division cases. Once your complaint is received, it will be reviewed, and a decision will be made concerning how the issue will be addressed. Depending on the specific circumstances, OCA may be able to assist you in resolving your concern.
No. Due to confidentiality laws, OCA staff cannot disclose any information they read in a Children’s Division case file.
There are two ways to file a complaint with OCA.
Absolutely not. OCA staff will NOT reveal the source of the complaint to Children’s Division. Additionally, complaints can be anonymously submitted to OCA.
If you are not ready to involve OCA to resolve your concern, you can attempt to resolve the concern directly with the County Children’s Division office that has caused the concerns. We would suggest contacting a supervisor, a circuit manager, or constituent services as necessary.
OCA is charged with providing assistance to the public to resolve concerns with cases involving children who have been abused or neglected. Though we are unable to provide direct help with other matters, we are happy to help you find the an organization that can assist you.