Date of Defense:
April 30, 2010
Objectives: Differential Response (DR) is an alternative approach taken by Child Protection Services (CPS) that draws a distinction between child abuse and child neglect cases in order to provide a family-centered approach to families in a way that more closely matches the severity of the situation while engaging them in the assessment and improvement process. Parents’ Voices was a program evaluation designed to assess the satisfaction of participants who were referred to different family resource centers in the City of San Francisco as part of DR.
Methods: This evaluation used a mix of qualitative and quantitative data collection methods to assess participants’ satisfaction by conducting telephone based surveys and focus groups.
Results: Overall, DR participants were satisfied with the DR process and the services they received from the different agencies.
Conclusions: Nonetheless, this evaluation makes the following recommendations to improve the DR program: 1) training and educating providers on relevant topics such as relationship building, communication skills, how to work with diverse populations, and how to overcome obstacles in working with DR clients; 2) producing a written manual that includes procedures and protocols on how to effectively work with DR clients; and 3) redesigning intake paperwork to better reflect clients’ situations and needs.