Senators: High DSS caseloads mean children still at risk

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Despite hiring 170 more child welfare workers, high caseloads persist in South Carolina’s troubled Department of Social Services.

DSS deputy director Taron Davis told a Senate panel this week there are still 73 caseworkers in the state who have caseloads of more than 50 children.

She said one Anderson County caseworker is responsible for 120 children and it’s startling that caseloads have grown in some counties during the past six months.

Davis says the agency is evaluating how many more caseworkers it needs and whether grants will pay for temporary positions. The agency is also working with county directors on determine how to better distribute cases.

Senators commended DSS for progress in retaining caseworkers. Last year, the turnover rate was 27 percent statewide, down from 39 percent in 2014.

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