Child Protective Services. HSA Family and Children's Services (FCS) responds to reports of suspected child abuse, neglect and exploitation.

As an internal facilitation and service design resource in the same agency where Child Protective Services (CPS) operates, I led a facilitation remotely to help more then ten employees from four different government and nonprofit organizations understand the process and systemic obstacles from separating children from their families (because of suspected abuse) and then them reuniting with quicker and with greater dignity.

Role: Lead Facilitator

Year: 2021

Challenge: CPS, community partner organizations and other governmental bodies are involved when a child is removed from their home because of reported endangerment. These organizations wanted to improve the family reunification process. However, there was no shared understanding of the (un)connected experiences that a child, their parent/guardian and each stakeholder have in the reunification process. How could I co-produce with the project team each stakeholder’s respective service journey, systemic obstacles experienced and a prioritized list for them to address once the facilitation is done?

FCS Visitation Process | 10 & 11 August 2021 is at the top of the MURAL/online facilitation tool screenshot.
It then includes a space for participants to move and type on the MURAL sticky notes. There is a blurry visual trying to explain the difference between inequality, equality, equity, and justice. 
The "Our Process" visual, explained below in the Alt Text, is then feature.
Below all of that, there are a series of rows with titles/text that are blurred out.
There are five, blurred, column headings spaced out across the MURAL. 
Sticky notes would then fill that space. 
On the far left side is an agenda for the day that states:
1. MURAL (Zoom & follow)
2. Review Deliverables: 
-Map the current state process, include times for longer steps / things to change
-Identify barriers
-(Barriers: Blame the system, not people)
-(Time Permitting) Prioritize barriers & identify possible improvements
3. Equity-Centered Design
4. Breaks (every 50 min.)
5. Finish mapping the child's and family's experience.
6. Allow you to build out your process, aligning with top row of child and family by segments (Start, Onboard, Maintain, Finish, Extend). 
7. Do this solo for ten minutes then review our work, then continue on.
- Map what happens 80% of the time.
- One idea per sticky note.
- Ask any question.
- Share anything unclear or confusing about MURAL, the process or anything else.
1. Review columns and rows
2.Ask questions. Offer insights. You are the SMEs.
3.Describe their power
4.Start w/ families

Strategy: The two managers, a third colleague and I, created a template for the facilitation. The managers identified each of the roles and organizations involved in the child removal and reunification process. We invited all to participate. My request for children and families to be there was unsuccessful. Our two, three-hour, facilitation sessions were followed by another hour-long session to prioritize the obstacles surfaced on the service journey map. The two managers helping to drive the project then learned of a multi-county project to work on this same issue and applied our insights to this broader effort.

Our Process: "(1) Learn (2) Build (3) Test, (4) Learn/Repeat" is written in white lettering on black, small circles. Each of these circles are on the outside of a large, white circle. The smaller, black circles are meant to be equidistant on the edge of the larger, white circle. In the middle of the larger white circle is written, "HSA employees and the public experience services through a historical context of power, privilege, discrimination and trauma. How could we create a more equitable and just future state with this context in mind?" 
Key words in this text are underlined by one of four arrows. Each arrow points to its own yellow box. Each yellow box has the same words, "Example for Employees? For Clients?"
1. "Power" has one arrow.
2. "Privilege" has another.
3. "Trauma" is one.
4. "Discrimination" is the last.

Equity Considerations: Participants came from a variety of demographic backgrounds and experiences working within the CPS system. Our equity-centered design approach attempted to honor their lived experiences as well as the families who were absent regrettably.

Outputs: (1) A hybrid service design blueprint and process map. (2) A prioritized list of obstacles in the service journey.

Impact: The participants had never collectively identified and attempted to fill the gaps in their assumptions about who was helping families and how. Quick wins were identified and made. The managers found the prioritized list from the facilitation provided focus for changes. They committed to working with their teams and families to test and implement improvements iteratively.