Roxboro Kiwanians hear about social services

Mar. 22, 2014 @ 10:24 AM

At the Feb, 17  meeting of the Roxboro Kiwanis Club, Person County Recreation, Arts and Parks Director John Hill reminded the club of the April 4 Cyclysm bike ride to benefit the United Way and the June Mud Run sponsored by Parks and Rec as possible service projects which the club could support.

Robin Simpson thanked the club for its contribution to Santa's Helpers, which helped more than 600 Person County children during this past Christmas season.

County Manager Heidi York introduced Carlton Paylor as the new director of the county Department of Social Services.  He has served as interim director for the past three years.  Paylor began his career as a juvenile court counselor and then moved to a position with adult probation.  He has been in human services for 17 years and was in child protective services prior to his present position.  He has just completed a Masters in Business Administration program and reports to the five-member DSS board. 

Paylor commended county and civic leadership for their roles in the county’s social services program and shared highlights of the department’s annual report for 2013.  He emphasized that a Child Protective Services worker is on call around the clock.  When a report is made, it must be screened by a supervisor.  If the report is approved for DSS involvement, a petition is filed in Person County District Court. When the matter is heard in court, all parties must be represented by counsel, and a specially trained volunteer guardian ad litem is appointed to be an advocate for the child.   If a child is found to be dependent, abused or neglected, the court fashions an appropriate remedy.

Paylor noted that there were 573 reports to Child Protective Services in 2013, slightly more than half of which were substantiated.   He informed the club that in those instances where custody of a child is removed from a parent, rooms are provided at DSS for supervised visitation.  This can sometimes create tense situations, occasionally necessitating involvement of law enforcement.  Person County children in the care of DSS are placed in 20 different counties in North Carolina, including 13 DSS-licensed foster homes locally.

It was pointed out that there are also adult protective services available through DSS.  Our aging population has resulted in this becoming an increasingly important part of the work of the department, one of the components of which is to keep persons in their homes as long as possible.   DSS serves as guardian for approximately 30 adults.   This past year 112 reports were made to Adult Protective Services

Medicaid is another program about which Paylor spoke.  896 Medicaid applications were received in 2013, more than 500 of which were approved.  Rest home cost averages $1,182 per month, with skilled nursing care being much more expensive.

Paylor also provided information and statistics about several other aspects of the work of the department. 

Paylor advised that DSS registered 35,519 client visits in 2013 and 71,000 documents were scanned.  The local budget for this past year included $48 million in federal funds, $18 million in state funds and $4 million in county funds.  A total of 4,113 individuals were served in some way.