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Wednesday, September 19, 2012 - 11:02am

Child Abuse Hotline To Be Centralized

People reporting child abuse in Georgia may soon be directed to a centralized call center. It’s a decision the Division of Family and Children Services is considering after two state employees were fired this month, charged with falsifying child abuse records.

Currently, there is a DFCS office in each of Georgia’s 159 counties—so any report of abuse or neglect is made to that county’s particular office. But now, DFCS officials have ramped up discussion about creating a centralized, 24 hour intake system that would be statewide.

Duaine Hathaway, Director of Georgia CASA says whether the calls are taken at county offices or through a centralized call system--- what’s crucial is the follow-up investigation for each report to make sure the child or children in question are not in danger.

“It still gets back to, once that call’s made what happens next, and it’s going to go back to that local area and we just want to make sure that child’s safe,” said Hathaway.

The division already operates a call center in Albany that handles after-hours reports of suspected child abuse for most of the state outside of Atlanta.