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Colorado Department of Human Services

Colorado Department of Human Services
Colorado Department of Human Services

Colorado’s governor funds new programs to add more youth psychiatric beds amid mental health crisis

$12 million in emergency funding follows an onslaught of criticism aimed at the state Department of Human Services and is expected to create 45 additional youth treatment beds

Health

Colorado begins to reckon with racial bias in child welfare, where Black kids are way overrepresented

The inequity, experienced not just in Colorado but in child welfare systems across the nation, surfaced for scrutiny last spring as the country protested the murder of George Floyd.

Equity

Charges against 2 Colorado women accused of killing their newborns point to need for more awareness of Safe Haven law

Only three babies were given up at fire stations or hospitals last year under the law, which is intended to prevent infant homicide.

News

It’s now illegal in Colorado to send kids to lockup for non-serious crimes. But what if they can’t go home?

Nearly every district attorney in the state signed a letter asking the state Department of Human Services to provide shelter beds for juveniles

News

A federal deadline for Colorado to redesign its child welfare system has arrived

Under the Family First law, states are rewarded for keeping children in family settings instead of institutions

Politics and Government

Colorado county leaders blast state officials over mental health, claim 69 foster kids are missing

In a letter to state officials, county human services directors say their caseworkers have had to sleep in office buildings with children because they can’t find them a bed.

Health

Colorado’s child protection ombudsman announces new program to review child deaths

The first death reviewed will be that of a 12-year-old who died after running away from Tennyson Center for Children.

News

Colorado hires private investigators to find teens who went missing when the state abruptly closed a youth center

Amid criticism about the state’s handling of the shutdown, the Human Services Department is paying private investigators $100/hour to find them

News

Colorado child welfare panel begins work on preventing abuse at residential youth centers

The process is likely to take a year and includes state and county child protection staff, plus foster family groups and residential treatment centers.

Politics and Government

Colorado may toughen probes into institutional child abuse claims following Colorado Sun/9News investigation

Two children were struck by cars and died after running away from youth residential treatment centers in the Denver area.

Sun Investigation

For incarcerated youth in Colorado, the coronavirus pandemic isn’t over yet

Colorado ranks among the 12 states with the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 diagnoses in juvenile detention facilities.

Health

Families kept in the dark about children’s safety in Colorado’s child welfare system

Colorado's child fatality review team did not investigate the death of a 12-year-old boy who ran away from a residential center. State officials refuse to release numbers of abuse allegations.

Sun Investigation

The deadly consequences when kids run away from Colorado residential treatment centers

So many children run away from residential treatment centers in Colorado that police departments are overwhelmed by the calls. Two kids have died.

Sun Investigation

Opinion: Colorado has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to change child welfare

We have the tools we need to strengthen families and prevent child abuse and neglect. Together, we can enrich our communities so that children and families flourish.

Opinion Columns

Kids aren’t getting school lunches as they learn from home. A plan will get money for missed meals to Colorado families.

But credits for buying groceries won’t hit their pockets until late May, and rollout will extend into the summer

Education

Foster youth who leave the system as teens could return until age 21 under new Colorado proposal

About one-third of foster kids who leave the system to live on their own end up homeless within three years. A proposed change would let them go back until their 21st birthday.

Politics and Government

Denver’s Tennyson Center to close its residential program after runaways, overdoses and child’s death

State child welfare officials were investigating neglect, lack of supervision and safety issues when Tennyson Center for Children decided to close its residential program.

News

Opinion: To recover from COVID-19’s impact, Colorado must invest in the workers who are getting us through it

Our elected leaders must commit to investing in essential services to make them sustainable and be better prepared for future crises.

Opinion Columns

Calls to Colorado’s child abuse hotline fell during coronavirus, but harm to kids likely didn’t

Child welfare officials have been concerned throughout the coronavirus pandemic that kids were out of sight of teachers, doctors who must report abuse

News

On Edge: Heightened anxiety, depression are testing Colorado’s already-frayed safety nets

As coronavirus makes another virulent run through Colorado, a silent epidemic of mental health challenges is feeding on the anxiety and isolation of the pandemic.

Health
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