About the Westchester County Department of Social Services (DSS) Manual
In 2006, WIHD was asked to help the Westchester County Department of Social Services create an online policy manual for the purpose of training, orienting, and guiding Westchester County child welfare staff in three program areas: Child Protective Services, Preventive Services, and Foster Care and Adoption. The new edition of the Manual has become a cornerstone of Westchester DSS’s infrastructure, a dependable and critical resource for caseworkers, supervisors, and managers seeking better outcomes for children and families.
The Manual has received the presigious NSDTA Quality Award for its “outstanding performance in the training and development field. Click here for Press Release.
- Over 1,000 pages of text, including protocols and procedures to promote best practice
- Accessible to DSS staff 24 hours per day, seven days per week
- New policies or changes are immediately integrated into the manual (usually within one day of reaching the program and policy office). Users can depend upon the fact that the information they use to guide their practice is always complete and up-to-date.
- Over 300 online, fillable forms. Each form can be completed, saved, e-mailed, and printed without the user ever having to leave his/her desk. This represents a true time-saver for child welfare staff that, until now, had to search high and low just to locate the appropriate form, then hope that it was indeed the correct and most updated version, complete it by hand, and then make multiple copies and manually send them to multiple recipients.
- Hundreds of online resources – from desk aids to directories – that can easily be printed.
- A customized Google functionality, which allows users to search for highly specialized topics and receive only the most relevant search results, which have been designated as such by members of the Manual team who are intimately familiar with the topics at hand.
- Text is written in clear, easily-understood language. The material is organized logically, to match the flow of a typical case.
WIHD has worked collaboratively with senior staff at Westchester County DSS from the very beginning of this project. We have been involved with every aspect of the Manual and have proudly worked to transform it from an overwhelming mass into a cohesive, cogent, and indispensible resource for child welfare staff.
VIEWS OF THE WESTCHESTER MANUAL