“The true character of a society is revealed in how it treats its children”
New York State
Better for All of Us
The New York State Citizen Review Panels for Child Protective Services (the Panels) examine the policies, procedures, and practices of the State and social services districts and, where appropriate, specific cases. The Panels evaluate the extent to which the agencies are effectively discharging their child protection responsibilities.
Panel members, appointed by the Governor or the New York State Legislature, are volunteers with a breadth of experience and knowledge in child welfare practice, policy, law, social work, education, and technology, among other areas.
The Panels also advocate for legislation that can have a positive impact on child welfare services in NYS. The Panels are active on social media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter, to raise awareness of the issues surrounding child protective services.
NYS Citizen Review Panels' 2023 Recommendations
For more than two centuries, advocates in New York State have fought for the health of families and the safety of children. That collective voice has shifted perspectives over the years, and often not been unanimous. At this moment in time, it is a strong voice unified with two messages:
Resources must be increased to families in order to strengthen them rather than separating them.
Eliminate or at least reduce family surveillance.
The Panels’ 2023 recommendations are designed to achieve this goal. With the election of a new Governor, the appointment of a new acting commissioner for OCFS, a robust federal commitment to child welfare funding, and a tide of advocacy voices clamoring for change, there is an opportunity to recreate a system that truly supports families.
Reduce the incidence of actual cases of child abuse and maltreatment in New York State.
Reduce harmful practices in CPS investigations.
Reduce unnecessary investigations of children and families by CPS.
Reduce unnecessary article ten petitions and unnecessary placements in foster care.