Behind the scenes | Arkansas Blog

Friday, August 29, 2008

Behind the scenes

Posted By on Fri, Aug 29, 2008 at 4:54 PM

Last night, the governor's office issued a response to comments made on the Arkansas Blog taking Gov. Beebe to task for the lack of public accountability in the state agency in charge of taking care of abused children, which will not release information about four kids who've died in foster care over the summer.

"The Governor has ordered a top-to-bottom review of DCFS procedures and personnel, leading to changes in leadership in the division as well as a redeployment of existing division resources to support field operations. For more information on the structural changes already underway at DCFS, call John Selig."

Today, Times reporter Patrick Michels did call Selig, director of the state Department of Human Services, and learned two things:

The top-to-bottom review started in April, prior to the deaths. “I’m not sure there’s been anything in particular that led to [the reforms]. It’s been an issue in this state and others for years,” Selig said, while allowing that the foster child deaths “certainly heighten the tension.”

And Selig has hired two new assistant directors for the Division of Children and Family Services: John Zalenski, a former fellow at the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative, and former state Rep. Lisa Ferrell. They join DCFS Sept. 8.

Selig said he's also formed a task force, made up of the agency's "strongest managers." 

All that reviewing and tasking and reorganizing and scrutiny since April -- and still four children dead and a 2-year-old in Children's Hospital after being turned away by DHS social workers who thought his bruises weren't bad enough to take him immediately into custody.


From the ArkTimes store


Comments (10)

Showing 1-10 of 10

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-10 of 10

Add a comment

More by Leslie Newell Peacock

  • It's 3rd Friday Art Walk in Argenta ...

    It's Third Friday Art Walk in Argenta, and it's beautiful outdoors. So go.
    • Mar 16, 2018
  • Dream comes true: Dreamland Ballroom gets big restoration grant

    The U.S. Department of the Interior and the National Park Service will award a $499,668 improvement grant to Dreamland Ballroom in the historic Taborian Hall building at Ninth and State streets, now the home of Little Rock Flag and Banner.
    • Mar 15, 2018
  • Write your congressmen to support history

    When you're busy cutting the federal budget to the bone so that folks wealthier than God don't have to contribute to the Treasury, no program is too small to ax, right?
    • Mar 15, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments


© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation