The Conditions for Return describe what must exist or be different with respect to specific family circumstances, home environment, caregiver perception, behavior, capacity and/or safety service resources that would allow for reunification to occur with the use of an in-home safety plan.
Impending danger threats do not have to be reduced or eradicated in order for children to be reunified with their families if an in-home safety plan can sufficiently control the threat.
What is necessary for children to return to their families is the establishment of well-defined circumstances within a child’s home that mitigates threats to child safety.
The basis for Conditions for Return is the In-Home Safety Analysis and Planning section of the Family Functioning Assessment and Progress Update and the five questions located there.
Conditions for Return are the explanations of how answering “No” to Safety Analysis questions can be changed to a “Yes”.
Once all five questions are answered with a “Yes” the child must be returned to the home with an In-Home Safety Plan.
The 5 In-Home Safety Analysis Questions
1. Are the parents willing and cooperative?
2. Is the home environment calm and consistent enough?
3. Are sufficient safety services available?
4. Can danger be managed without professional evaluations? (i.e.- psychological)
5. Do parents have a residence/stable home?
Case Info: Fred and Wilma’s home is near being condemned because of the physical structure, faulty wiring and unhealthy living conditions. There is no heat and the plumbing is inadequate. The couple is mildly developmentally disabled and makes poor choices about use of money and care of home.
Impending Danger: The child’s physical living conditions are hazardous and a child has already been seriously injured or will likely be seriously injured. The living conditions seriously endanger a child’s physical health. (This is one of the 11 standardized impending danger threats)
Conditions for Return:
- Fred and Wilma accept and follow the instructions and guidance of a homemaker safety service provider related to money and home management (Safety Services).
- The home is sufficiently clean and cared for so that no hygiene problems exist (Calm and Consistent).
- A plan for proper maintenance and adequate repair to make sure the home is livable day by day (Safety Services).
- Fred and Wilma set aside money for and make good decisions about the upkeep of their house (Willing and Able).
The conditions for return must be addressed and discussed at all staffings and hearings.