1100. Child Safety

Purpose Statement

Providing for child safety is part of CA's core mission. Safety is the primary and essential focus that informs and guides all decisions made from Intake through case closure. This includes removal and reunification decisions. Assessing the safety of children is essential in all placement settings (in-home and out-of-home).


Public Law 93-247 (as amended)

45 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 1340

45 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 1357.20

RCW 13.34

RCW 74.13

RCW 26.44

WAC 388-15

WAC 388-70


  1. Decisions on child safety are based on comprehensive information, logical reasoning and analysis (not incident-based or reactionary).
  2. The safety decision making process must include a continuous assessment of present and impending danger throughout the life of the case.
  3. A focus on safety must be maintained from the initial assessment through case closure using required tools to assess, control and manage safety threats.
  4. Every social worker will assess the safety of the child for present or impending danger. If present danger exists the worker will take an immediate protective action.
  5. A decision that a child is unsafe does not mean the child must be removed.
  6. A decision to place a child in out-of-home care is a safety decision. This level of intervention is only justified when it is clear that child safety cannot be controlled and managed in the home.
  7. Conditions for return home are designed to ensure that children are returned when no safety threats exist or an in-home safety plan can be implemented and sustained. Also there is indication that the parents are moving towards change to control and manage child safety.