NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) - With nearly 1,000 at-risk kids being left unchecked for months, leaders are now calling for a new plan to fix Texas Child Protective Services (CPS).
Governor Greg Abbott, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick and House Speaker Joe Straus are all calling on Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) Commissioner Hank Whitman to develop a new plan to protect foster kids and cut the backlog of those waiting for homes.
Patrick said the state has continued continued to put money into the department -- nearly tripling the budget in recent years. "This is a tough issue. We have a high turnover rate of our social workers, because it is devastating to go into some of these homes and see what has happened and to work with some of these children. It's a very high stress job that we continue to put money in."
The need is so great that Patrick is calling for a Capitol hearing on the matter. "I've always said we had money to take care of everyone, within reason, who's in need. And we should always take care of a child, because a child should not be held responsible to having irresponsible or abusive parents."
Patrick is also reaching out to faith-based groups for help and asking any Texan who can take in a foster child to go to the Department of Family and Protective Services website and sign up.
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