The Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA) through its Disaster Management Committee, has activated its National Emergency Disaster Protocol as well as its Regional and Location Committees, in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19).

The CPFSA, which has oversight of 54 child care facilities, including transitional living complexes, places of safety and children’s homes, is operating in active disaster mode to protect the health and well-being of children in State care, staff and their families.

Chief Executive Officer of the entity, Rosalee Gage-Grey, said that effective Friday (March 13), all visits to childcare facilities have been suspended for the 14 days.               “Parents or guardians wishing to visit their child/children are being asked to make contact with their caseworker.  Adjustments have been made to our telephone policy at all child care facilities to allow for children to remain in frequent contact with their relatives,” she pointed out.

She said that sensitisation sessions are being held with children and caregivers about personal hygiene and mandatory periodic handwashing. Sanitation stations are now in place and a special disaster fund was disbursed to all child care facilities to aid with the purchase of emergency supplies.

Persons entering the CPFSA offices will now be required to sanitise their hands at the sanitation stations.

For further information, persons can call 876 948-2841-2 or email: [email protected] .  Other contact numbers are listed on CPFSA’s website; childprotection.gov.jm or social media pages (twitter, Instagram and twitter) – @cpfsajm.

The National Children’s Registry continues to accept and receive child abuse reports.

The public is being reminded that all child abuse cases are to be reported by calling 888-PROTECT (776-8328), whatsapp 876-878-2882 or email [email protected].

The CPFSA remains in constant dialogue with the Ministry of Health and Wellness and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information and is adhering to the safety guidelines.

The agency provides care and protection to over 4000 children in the child protection sector, more than 2000 of which are in residential child care facilities and the remainder are in family-based care programmes, such as foster care, supervision order, and family reintegration.