Nashville, TN (TN Tribune)–Employees at Tennessee’s Department of Children Services offered an alarming assessment of the agency in a recent workplace survey that brings into question whether the department is fulfilling its core mission to create safe and healthy environments for the vulnerable children in state custody.
“It’s emotionally exhausting to work in such a toxic environment,” one employee at the central office wrote.
“The State of Tennessee has absolutely broken my passion for child welfare work due to its prioritization of data instead of child and family outcomes,” a worker in Northeast Tennessee wrote.
“The position feels like a set up for failure because the caseloads are too high…” a Mid-Cumberland staff member said.
In March, a total of 1,990 workers at the Department of Children’s Services completed the Safety Culture Survey to assess employee morale, job satisfaction and performance.
Employees also answered open-ended questions and their comments concerning workplace morale and high caseloads are alarming, according to Rep. Gloria Johnson (D-Knoxville) and Sen. Heidi Campbell (D-Nashville), both members of the Government Operations Committee, which has oversight authority over state government.
TODAY: Sen. Campbell, Rep. Johnson raise concerns about DCS worker survey
10:30 AM Central Time
Meeting ID: 833 6279 2314
Download the documents
  • DCS Safety Culture Survey employee comments as provided by DCS: Click here to review
  • SAMPLE of DCS employee survey results, compiled by legislative staff: attached as PDF
  • Background information on DCS caseloads: attached as a Word doc