Politics and Government
6:00 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

DHS Announces Final "Pinnacle Plan" Approval

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The Oklahoma Department of Human Services has announced final approval of its so-called ``Pinnacle Plan'' to improve the care of children in state custody.

DHS announced Wednesday that child welfare experts who've been monitoring the plan have given their approval.

The plan includes placing all children younger than 2 in a family-like setting rather than a group shelter, developing a training program for DHS supervisors and increasing the number of foster parents. It also includes increasing reimbursement payments to foster parents and raising the salaries of child welfare specialists.

The plan is the result of the settlement of a lawsuit by the New York-based child advocacy group Children's Rights over the treatment of children in state custody and is expected to cost about $153 million to implement.