Private Organization Accreditation

Children's Home Society of Florida delivers a unique spectrum of social services designed to protect children at risk of abuse, neglect or abandonment; to strengthen and stabilize families; to help young people break the cycle of abuse and neglect; and to find safe, loving homes for children.


Barry Gourley

Volunteer Roles: Endorser; Peer Reviewer

It is an honor to be a COA volunteer. I’ve had a great opportunity to work with fabulous COA volunteers, I’ve grown professionally in the COA accreditation process and I’ve met some wonderful people across this nation who are working hard to help and support children and families.
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The agency’s human resources practices attract and retain a competent and qualified workforce that is capable of supporting the agency’s mission and strategic goals. 

PA-HR 1: Work Environment

The agency provides an equitable work environment that is supportive of agency productivity, diversity, and stability.

Rating Indicators
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. 
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.
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.
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 administration and management 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
    County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
    • Policies related to: 
      1. Non-discrimination/EEO
      2. Anti-harassment
      3. Nepotism (PA-HR 1.01, PA-HR 1.02)
    • Procedures for:
      1. Non-discrimination/EEO reporting and investigation
      2. Anti-harassment reporting and investigation (PA-HR 1.01)
    • Training curricula for non-discrimination/EEO and anti-harassment training (PA-HR 1.01)
    • Aggregate reports of discrimination/harassment complaints, investigations, and corrective action for the past year (PA-HR 1.01)
    • See letter signed by the agency head verifying legal and regulatory compliance in PA-RPM 1 (PA-HR 1.01)
    State Administered Agency (Regional Office)
    • No Self-Study Evidence
    All Agencies
    • Training files, database, or personnel files that demonstrate attendance at non-discrimination/EEO and anti-harassment training (PA-HR 1.01)
    • Relevant legal and regulatory documents, as applicable to the agency (PA-HR 1.01)
    County/Municipality Administered Agency, State Administered Agency (Central Office), or other Public Entity
    • Interview:
      1. Agency head
      2. HR Director
      3. Supervisory personnel
      4. Direct service personnel
      5. EEO officer, if applicable
    State Administered Agency (Regional Office)
    • Interview:
      1. Regional director
      2. Agency leadership
      3. Regional HR personnel
      4. Supervisory personnel
      5. Direct service personnel

  • FP
    PA-HR 1.01

    The agency promotes a workplace that is free of discrimination and harassment by: 

    1. adhering to relevant policy and procedures;
    2. providing relevant training to personnel at all levels on an annual basis;
    3. establishing an accessible, clearly-defined reporting process that is communicated to all personnel;
    4. conducting timely, thorough, and unbiased investigations following a complaint; and
    5. taking immediate and appropriate corrective action when discrimination or harassment has occurred.

    Interpretation: Non-discrimination policies apply to all aspects of employment practices including, but not limited to: recruitment, hiring, promotion, termination, transfer, compensation, benefits, and working conditions. 

    Interpretation: Non-discrimination and anti-harassment procedures must allow personnel to bypass the alleged offender in the reporting process.
    Interpretation: Agencies should review guidance from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and other federal, state, or local entities to determine the legally protected classes applicable to their jurisdiction. See PA-HR 5.01 for more information on ensuring compliance with applicable laws.

  • PA-HR 1.02

    The agency adheres to human resources policies that prohibit preferential treatment and nepotism with regard to hiring, supervision, and promotion.

    Interpretation: This standard permits the hiring of relatives, provided that relatives are qualified and do not work within the same hierarchy of supervision.

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