When a Case Manager (CM) conducts, or attempts to conduct, a face to face contact with any case participant they must ensure that all people present - household members that are not active case participants, foster siblings/parents, visitors, service providers, etc (‘other people present’) - are included in the Florida Safe Families Network (FSFN) face to face contact.
The CM details observations of interactions between the active case participants and all ‘other people present’; ensuring to detail the children’s interactions with and reactions to these ‘other people present’ in the narrative note. Any tension, verbal arguments or guarded body language is also detailed as to all people present during the face-to-face contact. These observations are critical in accurately assessing risk and bonding; as well as detecting possible threats of harm to the children.
FSFN Documentation of ‘other people present’
When creating a Face-to-Face Contact in FSFN the CM selects all active case participants that were seen or attempted to be seen; then clicks on the blue ‘Add Face to Face Contacts’ hyperlink; which inserts data fields for each of them into the Narrative. Below the active case participants there is an ‘Other Contacts’ header and an ‘Insert’ button. The CM clicks on this ‘Insert’ Button to add each ‘other person present’.
When creating a Face-to-Face Home Visit – Child’s Current Residence in the Mindshare application, CM selects the ‘Add Other Contact’ button, which allows information to be entered in regarding others present during the home visit.
The CM enters the ‘other person present’ name, affiliation, title and date/time the Face to Face occurred in the inserted data fields for that person. Guidelines the CM follows when entering information into the ‘other person present’ data fields are:
• For a Foster Parent or Foster Parent’s child the first name and last initial are entered in the Name box (never entering the last name to respect confidentiality). Example:
Suzy S. SCC Foster Parent 01/11/2019 12:30 PM
John S. (8 y.o.) SCC FP’s Child 01/11/2019 12:50 PM
• For another Foster Child living in the home, only the child’s initials and age are entered. Example:
J.J. (2 y.o.) SCC Foster Child 01/11/2019 12:30 PM
• For a neighbor, family friend, etc demographics and relationship information are obtained and entered into the narrative note as well as ensuring the data fields are filled in Example:
Betty Boop Neighbor Neighbor 01/11/2019 12:55 PM
Notice neighbor is listed twice. The data fields in these inserts are all mandatory so sometimes the affiliation and title will be the same thing.
• For a Service Provider or Professional Agency Involved all information is obtained and entered. Example:
William Jones Helping Hand Social Worker 01/11/2019 1:15 PM
The CM also includes any contact information in the narrative notes for these ‘other people present’ and obtains business cards whenever possible if it is a professional. The CM has the parent sign a release of information for any ‘other person present’ so future communications with said person can occur.
Why is it important to include ‘other people present’ in documentation?
These other people, whether neighbors or professionals, are potential witnesses during the court hearings. They also may be able to assist in locating a parent or child who is missing in the future. They are excellent collateral sources to aide in accurately assessing risk as well.
Note: These same protocols detailed above apply whether the face to face contact is at the home or out in the field such as; the office, a school meeting, a doctor’s appointment etc.