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DHS Children's Services

DHS Children and Family Services

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) provides health care, economic assistance and other services for people who do not have the resources to meet their basic needs. As the state’s largest agency, DHS:

  • Works with counties and other partners on welfare reform and critical aging and children’s issues;
  • Oversees the state’s four publicly funded health care programs;
  • Licenses child care and day care facilities, manages budgets and distributes grants;
  • Provides state operated services through residential treatment centers and community-based facilities;
  • Measures performance and outcomes of programs;
  • Applies technology to make its work more effective and efficient;
  • Develops its internal workforce to assure quality work; and
  • Conducts projects to respond to special needs or issues.

Within DHS is Children and Family Services, which helps keep children safe and provides families with supports to care for their children. It also helps families and individuals transition to work and economic stability.

The Child Safety and Permanency Division works with counties to prevent child abuse and neglect, and to intervene when child maltreatment occurs. It provides a statewide competency-based training system in partnership with counties. The division oversees early intervention services, adolescent services, emergency and transitional housing for homeless youth, family preservation services (including crisis nurseries and services to minor parents), child protection services (including the Alternative Response Program, a voluntary assessment service to help families reported to the child protection system), out-of-home placement (including foster care), Indian child welfare and adoption.

It also includes the Social Services Information System, which is an automated child welfare targeted case management system for child protection, foster care, children's mental health and out-of-home placement. This automated system helps frontline staff manage their cases, helps counties manage their programs and helps the state make better-informed policy decisions.

Click the link below to learn more about DHS Children and Family Services:
DHS Children's Services

Ann Ahlstrom
Court Services
Staff Attorney- Children's Justice Initiative
Send an email via our contact form

Minnesota Judicial Center (MJC)
25 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55155