Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Officials to seek funds to beef up Kentucky social services

(AP) — Kentucky's commissioner of social services has announced that her agency will seek millions of dollars to address problems affecting social workers that they she acknowledges have been overworked and underpaid.

Teresa James announced Monday that the Cabinet for Health and Family Services plans to present a substantial request for funds to the Kentucky General Assembly when it meets in 2016 to begin drafting the state's next two-year budget. James says she wants to hire more workers, boost salaries and improve working conditions.

James' agency, the Department for Community Based Services, has undergone about $50 million in budget cuts since 2009.

Child advocates have long argued the state's social service system needs more money and more workers to better manage increasingly complex child abuse and neglect cases.