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Executive Budish Announces Plan to Implement Coordinated Strategy to Prevent Child Abuse in Cuyahoga County


Media Contact: Mary Louise Madigan: 216-698-2521; mlmadigan@cuyahogacounty.us

CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH - At a meeting today of the Cuyahoga County Children and Family Services Advisory Board, County Executive Armond Budish announced his intent to endorse and implement the Board’s recent report calling for a coordinated approach to protecting children in Cuyahoga County.

In Addressing and Preventing Child Abuse in Cuyahoga County: Toward a Coordinated Approach (April 2021), the Board called for the creation of:

Cross-system collaboration with early warning mechanisms for child abuse detection and identification, improved referral, protection, and follow-up of cases, and coordinated information sharing across medical institutions and social service agencies would create a critical network to help prevent and reduce child abuse and neglect.

The collaboration described in the report refers to a “multi-disciplinary team” (MDT) and a “medical child protection team” (CPT) that would coordinate the work of law enforcement, child protection, prosecution, medical and mental health services, social work, and victim advocacy, all working closely with the Canopy Child Advocacy Center (Canopy CAC).

The report also notes that the creation of the CPT and further support for the existing MDT would reflect a well-established best practice, and that the county’s extensive hospital resources and the current operation of Canopy CAC is a strong foundation for this work.

“We have the right partners, tools and resources to get this done in our community,” said County Executive Armond Budish. “Our conversations with health care providers, advocates and other partners show a willingness to move forward. A successful implementation of these strategies will help to prevent child abuse and deaths in Cuyahoga County, which is our most important priority.”

The County will work with the Advisory Board and other community advocates to identify budget figures and the mechanics of collaboration and will provide a progress report to the Board at its October 2021 meeting.