About Child Welfare Services (CWS)
Child Welfare Services includes a broad spectrum of programs that serve to protect the children in our community. The philosophy and focus of Child Welfare Services is to provide services to protect children from abuse and neglect. Most parents want to be good parents, and they do their best under sometimes stressful circumstances. The Department's first concern is to help the parents find ways to keep their child safely in his or her own home with services and/or supervision when possible and appropriate.
The goal of CWS is to provide for the safety and stability of children who are at risk of abuse or neglect.
Resource Family Approval Process
San Luis Obispo County is an early implementer of the Resource Family Approval process. For more information about this new process, please see our Resource Family Approval page.
How to Contact Child Welfare Services
Call the Department of Social Services at the telephone numbers below if you are concerned about the welfare of a child or suspect a child is neglected or abused.
Child Welfare Services Division
To report suspected child abuse or neglect in San Luis Obispo County call:
24-Hour Child Abuse Reporting Hotline
(805) 781-KIDS (5437)
Information for Mandated Reporters
The following State form is used for Suspected Child Abuse Reporting (SCAR) in California:
Suspected Child Abuse Report: SS 8572
Click here for more Mandated Reporter information and resources.
Emergency Response provides in-person response, 24 hours a day, seven days a week to reports of abuse, neglect, or exploitation.
Family Maintenance/Family Preservation
Family Maintenance provides time-limited protective services to prevent or remedy neglect, abuse, or exploitation while the child remains at home.
Family reunification provides time-limited foster care services to prevent or remedy neglect, abuse, or exploitation, when the child cannot safely remain at home, and needs temporary foster care while services are provided to the family.
Permanency Planning provides an alternative permanent family structure, such as adoption, guardianship, or long-term foster care, for children who, because of abuse, neglect, or exploitation cannot safely remain home and who are unlikely ever to return home.
Our licensed public Adoption Agency recruits and evaluates families for adoption of children whose parents have relinquished the child or whose parental rights have been terminated by Juvenile Court.
Would you Like to become a Foster Parent or Adopt a Child?
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a foster parent, adoptive parent or resource parent, click here to go to the Adoptions page for more information.
More Help for Families with Children
Child Welfare Services partners with the Children's Services Network to help ensure the safety of children in the county. Click here to go to the Children's Services Network web page which provides information and resources for families and children living in San Luis Obispo county.
Safely Surrender a Baby
The Safely Surrendered Baby law encourages mothers of newborn children that are unable or unwilling to care for the infant to be able to surrender the baby within 72 hours of birth with no shame, no names and no blame. Click here for more information.
California Child & Family Services - Peer Quality Case Review (PQCR) 2010
Click here to view the 2010 Peer Quality Case Review Report for San Luis Obispo County.
California Child & Family Services Review - 2011 County Self-Assessment
Click here to see the San Luis Obispo County Child & Family Services Self-Assessment Report for 2011.
California Child & Family Services Review - 2012 System Improvement Plan (SIP)
Click here to see the California Child & Family Services SIP Report for San Luis Obispo County for 2012.
Click here to see the 2011 SIP Update.
Click here to see the 2009 SIP Update.
Click here to see the 2008 SIP Report.
Click here for CWS Statistics.
Click here to go to the Department of Social Services home page.