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Issues with state social services concerning to lawmaker

PIERRE, SD – A South Dakota lawmaker says he is concerned about the Department of Social Services because he is hearing more accounts of child abuse and truancy.

House Representative Ryan Cwach observes, “When it comes to child protection services, they have a hard time keeping employees because of the wages and because it’s a demanding job.”  He adds, “Child protective service employees are going into these houses and finding abused and neglected children. They are the only resource protecting kids.”

Cwach says he does want to hear more from the Department. “We do have a new person in charge there and I do want to give them the benefit of the doubt,” he says.  “But I think we do need  to look at what’s going on in that department.

“Are we underfunding it?, he asks.  “Is that the issue?  Are we being wasteful in the department?  Is there money that we’re spending on something that isn’t effective anymore?”

Cwach says employee pay is a critical issue. “Whatever we do with it, it needs to be something where we have employees where we compete in the market place of child protective services and other facilities.

Cwach says it could be a suggested study topic this summer.

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