Client & Family Rights


All parents and caregivers involved with the Division of Children and Family Services are entitled to certain rights. They include:
  • The nature of the report regarding your child.
  • How the assessment will be conducted and how long it will take.
  • The suspected harm and /or risk to your child.
  • What was found as a result of the assessment and what will happen next.
  • To receive communication assistance if you have special needs.
  • To request information in your native language and request an interpreter.
  • To refuse any services at any time.

Children also have certain rights, including to be nurtured and live safely in their home. Children who are subject to a court order related to child protection have additional rights.

Click on a topic below for a detailed explanation of your rights

It is against the law to deny or delay any ODJFS service to anyone because of race, color, religion, disability, age, sex, political affiliation or belief, or national origin. Any client, customer or person served by DCFS who believes, he or she has been treated inappropriately because of one of the criteria above is entitled to file a complaint. Complaints may be filed with the CCDCFS Civil Rights Coordinator, directly with the ODJFS Bureau of Civil Rights or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

If you wish to file a civil rights complaint because of a service related issue at DCFS, please contact the DCFS Community Relations Department or the CCDCFS Civil Rights Coordinator, Steve Rusnak at 216-881-4028, Room 215W Jane Edna Hunter Building or Stephen.Rusnak@jfs.ohio.gov. If you wish to file a complaint directly with ODJFS or HHS, the Civil Rights Coordinator will assist the client in obtaining the current information required to file the complaint.

Any employee or perspective employee who feels they have been discriminated against by the Agency or the County should contact the Cuyahoga County Department of Human Resources, Ohio Civil Rights Commission @ 614-466-2785 or the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission @ 1-800-669-4000.