Morale at the Department of Children & Families definitely is low, especially in case management. Many case managers are not [masters of social work], but they have studied criminal justice or other fields and ended up in children’s case management.
A good case worker gets promoted to a managerial position. So, the very people we need out in the field end up supervising. These are very different roles and require different kinds of people to effectively carry out the respective tasks required.
Moreover, case managers are overworked. They have too many cases and too many kids in far too many parts of the county. The salary leaves much to be desired, adding stress to their personal lives and diverting attention from their jobs — a dangerous scenario, as we have sadly seen.
Laura Juncadella, Guardian ad Litem, Miami
Note: We asked members of the Public Insight Network — locals who have agreed to share their insights on current events for Miami Herald and WLRN — how DCF could improve and misconceptions about the agency. How can DCF improve? Tell us. Start informing our newsroom with your thoughts at MiamiHerald.com/insight.