About this resource
Ombudsman is a Swedish word that means "representative" or "agent." Ombudsman or Child Advocates were established within states and/or Child Welfare to investigate complaints, concerns, or violations of children right's while in foster care.
In Arizona, the Ombudsman's job is to investigate all government agencies within the state, not only concerns about the Department of Child Safety (DCS). The Arizona Ombudsman office requires you attempt to solve any concerns/problems you have with DCS first, but if you don't have success, contact their office for assistance.
Arizona DCS recommends you try these steps before reaching out to the Ombudsman:
- Call your case manager and/or their manager if you have not been responded to after a couple of tries
- Read what agencies send you and be mindful of directions and deadlines
- Ask to elevate if the lower-level workers do not understand you
- Keep all documents, letters, emails, etc that have to do with your concern!
- File a written complaint -- this will result in a better reaction and potential results, as well as allows you to provide evidence to your claim
- Confirm this is something the state can help with -- find a list of topics and concerns the Arizona Ombudsman Office cannot investigate, linked here.
If your problem isn't resolved you can contact the Ombudsman Office and they will take it from there!