Adult Protective Services (APS)
The primary goal of Adult Services is to assist elders (persons 65 years or older) and dependent adults when they have been or are currently being victims of abuse or neglect. Adult Services may assist in keeping elders and dependent adults in their homes and communities if determined to be a safe situation by making the proper referrals.
Social worker supervisors receive and review referrals for elder or dependent adult abuse and/or neglect. The social worker supervisor determines if there is a situation occurring and a need to protect the elder or dependent adult. If the person does meet the APS criteria, the referral is assigned to a social worker. The assigned social worker then does a face-to-face investigation and, based on the findings, determines if abuse exists. If it does, the client may not be interested in changing the circumstances. The client is an adult and has the right to self-determination, thus having a right to choose how, where, and in what conditions he/she wants to live in. In most cases, referrals and a cross report is made to the appropriate law enforcement agency based on the residence/location of where the abuse/neglect is occurring. If it has been determined that an elderly person/dependent adult may need protection or other assistance, then the social worker takes steps to make sure that person is kept safe. There is a referral line available to leave messages and an APS worker will return your call. The steps may be as simple as making a referral to the appropriate agency or if more difficult, a plan can be developed between the parties involved to correct the situation, possibly taking several months to complete. Unfortunately, APS is not an emergency response unit.
An Adult Services social worker looks for these things when they respond to calls:
- Physical and/or sexual abuse
- Abandonment, abduction, isolation, neglect
- Financial abuse
- Self neglect
Some of the things an Adult Services social worker does are to:
- Review and investigate calls/reports of abuse/neglect within 24 hours of the report
- Link elders and dependent adults to other agencies where they can get help with their emergency needs
- Locate a friend or a relative of the elder or dependent adult to provide support
- Provide help in completing application packets for conservatorship and assisting with referrals to the Public Guardian’s Office
Some of the things an Adult Services social worker cannot do are:
- Take into our custody any persons over the age of 18 years old
- Force a person over the age of 18 into moving into a Skilled Nursing Facility
- Force a person over the age of 18 into living differently than they choose.
In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS)
The In-Home Supportive Services Program (IHSS) assists Medi-Cal eligible aged, blind and/or disabled individuals so they may safely stay in their own homes. Aged, blind or disabled adults may receive the services of a care provider if they are eligible. IHSS is an alternative to out-of-home care. The Personal Care Services Program (PCSP) provides personal care services, such as assistance with feeding, bathing and dressing, and accompaniment to medical appointments. IHSS does not serve as a 24 hour a day program. If the need for 24 hour care is present, the potential client may need a care facility to accommodate such needs.
Social workers receive referrals. The Social Worker Supervisor then reviews each referral. A social worker is then assigned to the case or the referral is evaluated (if the potential client did not meet the IHSS criteria.) Normally when the initial referral is incomplete the Social Worker Supervisor will contact the Reporting Party to attempt to gather additional information that would assist in determining the actual need for services before evaluating out the referral.
Once assigned to a case carrying social worker they schedule the home visit with the client or relative. The face to face investigation to the applicant’s home is then completed; various people may have a role in this home visit. The home visit may be with the social worker, an agency translator (when needed), the applicant, the applicant’s friend, relative, etc. The IHSS application paperwork is completed during this home visit, including medical certification, a Universal Release of Information Form, and any additional paperwork that assists the social worker in determining true needs of the applicant. If a social worker determines that a person needs and is eligible for IHSS, the social worker will determine how many hours of IHSS the person will need each month.
In-Home Supportive Services may be any of the following: housekeeping, meal preparation, meal clean-up, laundry, shopping for food and running errands. Personal care services include bladder and bowel care, respiration, routine bed baths, feeding and dressing. Personal Care Services also includes help with getting in and out of bed, moving around, bathing, oral hygiene, and grooming. PCSP may also provide help with medications, travel to medical appointments, paramedical services and protective supervision.
First 5 In-Home Visiting Program
Family advocates provide support, advocacy and referrals to treatment services for families with children that are between the ages of 0 and 5. Education and information about various states of child development, including access to a public health nurse who ensures health and safety of the children being served under this program. Nurses also provide health education, case management and assessments for family members. All First 5 services are provided through classes and activities at the Family Resource Center and during home visits.
Family Preservation & Support (PSSF)
The Family Preservation & Support Program provides one-to-one case management with parents. Services include family self-sufficiency planning, in-home services, and life skills classes. Case managers work with Child Protective Services and the referred family needing services for family reunification or for family maintenance.
Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS): The Family Self-Sufficiency Program is designed to assist families who are currently participating in the Section 8 Program. The Self-Sufficiency Program helps program participants find employment, teaches parenting and life skills while becoming independent of all government assistance over a 5 year period. As family income increases, a portion of the increased rent is deposited into an escrow account that can be accessed in five (5) years at the successful completion of the contract for a down payment on a house.
The Victim/Witness Program is designed to assist people who have been involved in a violent crime. People face many problems after becoming a victim of a crime. Victims often suffer from a physical injury or emotional trauma. Victims often feel alone and confused. HHSA staff assists victims with their immediate safety needs, their understanding of the criminal justice system and their financial and emotional needs. Financial awards for up to $7,000 are available to victims/witnesses who meet eligibility guidelines. Victim/Witness services include: crisis intervention and on-going support; emergency assistance; referrals to additional services; advocate services for the family, friends and employers; orientation and education of the victim of the criminal justice system; temporary restraining orders; victim of crime compensation and restitution.