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(1) The legislature finds that:
(a) The state of Washington and several Indian tribes in the state of Washington assume legal responsibility for abused or neglected children when their parents or caregivers are unable or unwilling to adequately provide for their safety, health, and welfare;
(b) Washington state has a strong history of partnership between the department and contracted service providers who currently serve children and families in the child welfare system. The department and its contracted service providers have responsibility for providing services to address parenting deficiencies resulting in child maltreatment, and the needs of children impacted by maltreatment;
(c) Department caseworkers and contracted service providers each play a critical and complementary role in the child welfare system;
(d) The current system of contracting for services needed by children and families in the child welfare system is fragmented, inflexible, and lacks incentives for improving outcomes for children and families.
(2) The legislature intends:
(a) To reform the delivery of certain services to children and families in the child welfare system by creating a flexible, accountable community-based system of care that utilizes performance-based contracting, maximizes the use of evidence-based, research-based, and promising practices, and expands the capacity of community-based agencies to leverage local funding and other resources to benefit children and families served by the department;
(b) To achieve improved child safety, child permanency, including reunification, and child well-being outcomes through the collaborative efforts of the department and contracted service providers and the prioritization of these goals in performance-based contracting; and
(c) To implement performance-based contracting under chapter 205, Laws of 2012 in a manner that supports and complies with the federal and Washington state Indian child welfare act.


Effective date2017 3rd sp.s. c 6 ss 102, 104-115, 201-227, 301-337, 401-419, 501-513, 801-803, and 805-822: See note following RCW 43.216.025.
Conflict with federal requirements2017 3rd sp.s. c 6: See RCW 43.216.908.
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