WHO IS ACCREDITED?

Private Organization Accreditation

Catholic Charities alleviates human suffering and improves the quality of life of 100,000 people annually, regardless of religious background. A staff of 600 provides support and services related to housing, food, mental health, children's services, addiction treatment, and domestic violence services.
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ORGANIZATION TESTIMONIAL

Domestic Violence Intervention Services, Inc.

Donna Mathews, Associate Director

Becoming accredited and maintaining our accreditation through COA has helped us increase our professionalism and thereby provide better services to domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and dating violence survivors.
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Purpose

Family Preservation and Stabilization Services improve family functioning, increase child and family well-being, ensure child safety, reduce the need for CPS intervention and/or the removal of children from the home, and strengthen families with children returning from out-of-home care.

PA-FPS 3: Screening and Intake

The agency’s screening and intake practices ensure that families receive prompt and responsive access to appropriate services.

Rating Indicators
1
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the agency's practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  
  • All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions; exceptions do not impact service quality or agency performance. 
2
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance
A rating of (2) indicates that an agency's infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement. 
  • The majority of the standards requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented.  
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality or agency performance.  
3
Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
A rating of (3) indicates that the agency's observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement.  
  • The agency has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part of this framework.   
  • Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner. 
  • Service quality or agency functioning may be compromised.   
  • Capacity is at a basic level.
4
Unsatisfactory Implementation or Performance
A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all.  
  • The agency’s observed service delivery infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.  
Please see Rating Guidance for additional rating examples. 

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
    • Screening procedures
    • Procedures for determining tribal membership and facilitating tribal involvement in cases involving American Indian and Alaska Native children
No On-Site Evidence
    • Interview:
      1. Program director
      2. Relevant personnel
      3. Families served
    • Review case records

  • FP
    PA-FPS 3.01

    The agency responds to referrals or requests for service by directly contacting families within:

    1. 72 hours, if providing family preservation and stabilization services; or
    2. 24 hours, if providing intensive family preservation and stabilization services.

    Interpretation: Response time should be appropriate to the urgency of family needs and the level of concern for child and/or family safety. Agencies providing intensive services should be able to respond immediately, if necessary. When special circumstances result in the postponement of contact, the agency should document these circumstances, as well as its efforts to initiate contact, within the first 24 hours of referral or request for service.


  • PA-FPS 3.02

    The family is screened and informed about what services will be available and when, and works with the agency to determine how well family members’ needs and risk factors match the agency’s services.

    Interpretation: The agency should consider both the intensity and duration of the services it provides and recommend the most appropriate and least intrusive service alternative that will preserve child and family safety and well-being.

    NA Another provider is responsible for screening, as defined in a contract.


  • FP
    PA-FPS 3.03

    Prompt, responsive intake practices:

    1. are culturally responsive;
    2. are trauma-informed;
    3. ensure equitable treatment;
    4. give priority to urgent needs and emergency situations;
    5. support timely initiation of services; and
    6. provide for placement on a waiting list, if applicable. 

    Interpretation: To ensure that transgender and gender non-conforming service recipients are treated with respect and feel safe, intake forms and procedures should allow individuals to self-identify their gender. Additionally, service recipient choice regarding their first names and pronouns should be respected. 

    Interpretation: Trauma-informed intake practices explore whether a service recipient has been exposed to traumatic events and exhibits trauma-related symptoms and/or mental health disorders. A positive screen indicates that an assessment or further evaluation by a trained professional is needed.
     


  • PA-FPS 3.04

    Families who cannot be served, or cannot be served promptly, are referred or connected to appropriate resources.

    NA The agency accepts all clients.


  • FP
    PA-FPS 3.05

    The agency identifies American Indian and Alaska Native families and collaborates with the tribe or Indian organization to the greatest extent possible and appropriate to:

    1. determine the most appropriate plan for the family; and
    2. maintain connections between the family and tribe when desired by the family.

    Interpretation: The agency is responsible for having established procedures for identifying American Indian and Alaska Native families who are members of an Indian tribe or eligible for membership. Physical appearance, blood quantum, and perceived presence or absence of cultural cues within the family, are not sufficient for identification purposes. In some cases, such as with reunification following out-of-home placement, tribal membership may already be established. 

    Note: Evidence of efforts to identify and contact the family’s tribe and of tribal participation should be documented in the case record.

    Research Note: Early identification of American Indian and Alaska Native families supports delivery of culturally responsive services and is critical to ensuring that the requirements of ICWA are followed should children later be removed from the home. To facilitate accurate determinations of tribal membership, agencies should provide tribes with: parents’ genograms or family ancestry charts; parents’ maiden, married, and other known former names or aliases; parents’ current and former addresses; and parents’ places of birth and birthdates.


  • PA-FPS 3.06

    During intake, the agency gathers information to identify critical service needs and/or determine when a more intensive service is necessary, including:

    1. personal and identifying information;
    2. physical and mental health status, and emergency health needs;
    3. developmental histories; and
    4. safety concerns, including imminent danger or risk of future harm.

    Research Note: According to the National Council for Behavioral Health (NCBH), Mental Health First Aid and Youth Mental Health First Aid are federally recognized evidence-based practices and training programs designed to empower direct service providers with the skills needed to identify and respond appropriately to mental health distress and crises at the point of initial screening. These practices promote early detection and intervention, especially in cases where the service recipient may pose a threat of physical harm to self or others. 

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