About OCFS

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Mission Statement

The Office of Children and Family Services serves New York's public by promoting the safety, permanency and well-being of our children, families and communities. We will achieve results by setting and enforcing policies, building partnerships, and funding and providing quality services.

Agency Overview

OCFS is dedicated to improving the integration of services for New York’s children, youth, families and vulnerable populations; to promoting their development; and to protecting them from violence, neglect, abuse and abandonment. The agency provides a system of family support, juvenile justice, youth development, child care and child welfare services that promote the safety and well-being of children and adults. Among the operating principles across all program areas are that services should be developmentally appropriate, family-centered and family-driven, community-based, locally responsive, and evidence and outcome based.

OCFS is responsible for programs and services involving foster care, adoption and adoption assistance, child protective services including operating the Statewide Central Register for Child Abuse and Maltreatment, preventive services for children and families, services for pregnant adolescents, and protective programs for vulnerable adults. OCFS is also responsible for the functions performed by the State Commission for the Blind and coordinates state government response to the needs of Native Americans on reservations and in communities.

The agency provides oversight and monitoring of regulated child care (family day care, group family day care, school-age child care and day care centers outside of NYC), legally exempt child care, child care subsidies, child care resource and referrals, and the Advantage After School Program, and also provides services and programs for infants, toddlers, pre-schoolers, and school-age children and their families.

The agency is responsible for all elements of the state’s juvenile justice programs, transformation of the juvenile justice system, administering and managing residential facilities, and for juvenile delinquents and juvenile offenders placed in the custody of the OCFS Commissioner.

The agency operates a residential care system consisting of a total of 10 facilities comprised of three secure facilities, six limited-secure facilities and one non-secure facility, for youth placed in the custody of OCFS by family and criminal courts. In addition, OCFS operates Community Multi-Services Offices (CMSOs) that are responsible for provision of services to the youth and family from day one of OCFS placement. OCFS works closely with municipalities such as local departments of social services and county youth bureaus so that adequate youth development services and programs are available at the local level.

The Executive Office of the New York State Office of Children and Family Services, encompassing the Office of the Commissioner, the Office of the Executive Deputy Commissioner, the NYC Executive Office, the Office of the Ombudsman, and Executive Services, provides overall leadership, management, coordination, and administration of agency operation and mission-driven priorities.

OCFS divides its responsibilities into two main areas: program and support. The program divisions/offices include: Division of Child Care Services (DCCS), Division of Child Welfare and Community Services (DCWCS), Division of Juvenile Justice and Opportunities for Youth (DJJOY), Division of Youth Development and Partnerships for Success (YDAPS), and the Commission for the Blind (NYSCB). The support divisions/offices include: Division of Administration (Admin), Division of Legal Affairs (Legal), Office of Communications (Communications), Office of Strategic Planning and Policy Development (SPPD), and the Office of Special Investigations (SI).

OCFS maintains regional offices in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Albany, Valhalla, Long Island, and New York City to support agency programs and partnerships with stakeholders and providers.