Children's Advocacy Group says Arkansas System Near "Crisis"

AUGUST 19, 2005 - Posted at 11:18 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - A children's advocacy group says Arkansas has made progress in protecting children from neglect and abuse but still is approaching a "crisis" in delivering much-needed services.

The Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families has released the first in a series of reports on the state's child welfare system.  The report includes findings based on data from the state Division of Children and Family Services.

The division serves about 3,000 children a day in neglect and abuse cases, foster care, and those with other child welfare concerns.

The group noted that the state agency has attained accreditation from the Council of Accreditation for Children and Families and improved its ability to track cases.  It also said the agency employees are "dedicated, hard working and have done their best."

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)