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Family Assessment Response (FAR)

The Family Assessment Response approach was made a permanent option, pursuant to Chapter 45 of the Laws of 2011, for local social service districts throughout New York State. Those districts who may have an interest in participating or are looking to expand their existing program should contact the applicable OCFS regional office.

Pursuant to Chapter 452 of the Laws of 2007, counties interested in using a differential response/Family Assessment Response (FAR) approach for handling some portion of their child maltreatment reports were invited to submit an application to OCFS seeking approval. Then, in accordance with Section 427-a.8 of the Social Services Law, OCFS shall post the plan contained in the application approved for implementation of a differential response program within sixty days of such approval.

Trauma Informed Care

During New York's first federal CFSR and program improvement plan, there was recognition of the risk associated with models of residential care that focused on controlling children's behavior, rather than enhancing skills for self-regulation and control. Interventions that were intended to control and direct the behavior of young people were found to have unintended consequences, including the potential for injuries and sabotaged treatment gains. The framework of trauma informed practice was identified as a mechanism to move residential care to a more collaborative, therapeutic and relationship driven modality. New York is committed to the continued expansion of trauma informed practice as a means to reduce and prevent abuse or maltreatment, as well as to reduce physical restraints in residential foster care settings.