Human Services Department
Washington County Human Services Department will, with dignity and respect, offer responsive and effective community programs to individuals and families challenged by disability, economic hardship and safety concerns. Our commitment is to help facilitate self-sufficiency for those we serve and enhance the quality of life in our community.
Through our four divisions of Access and Outreach, Behavioral Health, Children and Families and Economic Support, the dedicated staff of the Human Services department strives to support individuals and families as they achieve self-sufficiency and social well being.
Jim Strachota, Director of Human Services
Manager Ruth Reines 262/335-4583
Partnering with the Community to
Protect Those in Need
Mental health emergencies; Child abuse/neglect; Juvenile Justice; Concerns about the functioning of an individual or a family are the focus of the two units of the Access & Outreach Division. Acute Care Services - Crisis Intervention Team and Family Intake and Assessment staff work closely with community partners such as law enforcement, schools, medical staff and others to promote safety and quality of life for individuals and families. By providing immediate assessment and safety planning Access & Outreach staff will negotiate the dialogue and services necessary to solve the issues that challenge those in our community. Access & Outreach helps to empower people to make essential changes.
Professionals are available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week to:
Serve as the INITIAL POINT of contact for emergency mental health needs, crisis intervention, child abuse and neglect, and parent/child conflicts.
Address IMMEDIATE SAFETY CONCERNS, including suicide assessment, child abuse and neglect, safety planning, and juvenile justice.
Assess INDIVIDUAL AND FAMILY NEEDS, including counseling, parenting, mental health, alcohol/drugs, inpatient or detoxificaiton needs, parent/child conflicts, and family and juvenile court issues.
Help individuals and families DEVELOP PLANS OF ACTION that promote problem-solving and positive choices, including assessment, safety planning, short-term case management, treatment and follow-up referrals.
PROVIDE COMMUNITY EDUCATION AND OUTREACH to promote an increased understanding of Washington County Human Services.
FAMILY INTAKE AND ASSESSMENT
Supporting families to provide safe, nurturing environments that prevent child abuse and neglect. Family and Juvenile Court Intake services. For more information, contact Sue Thornton, Intake and Assessment Supervisor by calling 262/335-4610 or at Sue.Thornton@co.washington.wi.us or
TO REPORT CHILD ABUSE OR NEGLECT CALL
ACUTE CARE SERVICES - CRISIS INTERVENTION TEAM
A State-certified 24/7 Emergency Mental Health Program that provides support to empower individuals and families during a crisis. For more information contact Deb DuFour, Acute Care Services Program Manager by calling 262/335-4583 or at
CRISIS LINE 262/365-6565
TOLL FREE 1-866/906-6565
Additional services available to the community include:
- Critical Incident Stress Management Debriefing;
- Educational Presentations;
- Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training - ASIST www.livingworks.net
OR IN A LIFE-THREATENING EMERGENCY CALL 9-1-1
To learn more about suicide prevention in Wisconsin go to
W I S C O N S I N
P A R T N E R I N G T O S A V E L I V E S I N O U R S T A T E
For 24/7 crisis help you may also call the
NATIONAL SUICIDE PREVENTION LIFELINE
If you are in need of housing or shelter resources, contact the
WASHINGTON COUNTY HOUSING HOTLINE at 262/334-4912
Homeless Partnership Includes:
Family Promise of Washington County
Friends of Abused Families
The Youth & Family Project
Washington County Human Services
St. Vincent DePaul
West Bend 262/334-7291
NEW!! Beginning April 23, 2013
Survivors of Suicide Loss Support Group
4th Tuesday of every month
6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
The Public Agency Center (PAC)
Call 262-365-6565 for more information
Manager Eric Diamond (262) 335 - 4583
Recovery Oriented, Person-Centered and Strength-Based Treatment and Support
Mental health and substance abuse issues can interfere with health, family, work and/or education. Our Behavioral Health professionals are trained to provide effective prevention, early intervention and treatment services to assist individuals and their families along the road to recovery.
- Lifespan Clinical Services - Assessment, psychotherapy, psychiatry
To schedule an appointment call (262) 335 - 4545
- Community Treatment Services - Service facilitation, groups, psychotherapy, psychiatry
For more information call (262) 335 - 4600
- Prevention - Reducing risky behavior and lifestyle choices
- Counseling - Supporting people in making healthier choices
- Alcohol and other drug abuse (AODA) - Outpatient and residential treatment
- Peer Support - Engaging with others
- School-based Therapy - In-school support for children challenged by emotional and mental health issues
- Residential Services - Supportive living services
- Vocational - Supported employment services
- Inpatient/Detoxification - Inpatient mental health and alcohol detoxification services
For more Information (262) 335 - 4583
If you are in crisis and need emergency mental health or detoxification services, 24 hours per day call
(262) 365 - 6565
For more information regarding Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse education, family support, and community prevention efforts, contact The Council on alcohol and other drug abuse.
Manager Sandy Hoefert (262) 335 - 4610
Strengthening Families, Protecting Children and Enhancing Our Community
The services of the Children and Families division support and enhance safe, responsible family functioning and the protection of children and our community. We help families to identify unsafe/risky behaviors and overcome struggles that limit ability to properly care for their children, including those challenged by disabilities. Our juvenile supervision services hold young people accountable for their behavior and assist them in developing the skills and abilities necessary to lead a safe productive life.
Assistance is provided through:
- Child Abuse and Neglect Services - Supervision, safety, case management, counseling, out-of-home placement
The Department has statutory responsibility for investigating situations where it is suspected that children have been physically, sexually or emotionally abused or neglected. Safety intervention services are provided to the child while family assessment and services are initiated. While providing protection for the children, the focus is on assisting the family to successfully manage stressful situations and enhance their ability to function as a responsible, nurturing unit. Coordination with mental health services, parent education programs, law enforcement, schools, and substance abuse programs is important to ensure the needs of the children and parents are met.
Services may include:
-Investigation & Assessment for Physical, Sexual or Emotional Abuse or Neglect Situations
-Safety Services & Plans
-Family Based Counseling
-Parenting Skills Training
-Supervision & Case Management
-Out of Home Placement
To report possible child abuse or neglect situations call Family Intake at (262)335-4888.
- Juvenile Justice Services - Supervision, restitution, community service, out-of-home placement
The primary goal of Juvenile Justice Services is to prevent or reduce uncontrollable and/or delinquent behavior. In addition to redirecting the juvenile's behavior, attention and intervention efforts are given to strengthen parental control and functioning. The balanced approach of juvenile justice addresses community protection, youth accountability and the development of youth's and parents' competencies. Services are court ordered and frequently utilize collateral resources. Close coordination with law enforcement, schools, Court System, District Attorney's Office, and other counseling service agencies are maintained.
Family Court - Legal custody and physical placement studies
- Foster Care Services - Recruits, licenses and trains foster parents and ensures a safe, suitable foster or adult family home when needed
Foster care is a temporary alternative to a child's natural home when that home becomes socially, emotionally or physically inadequate for the child's needs. Foster children range in age from infant to 18. All foster children have unique backgrounds, experiences, personalities, strengths and weaknesses. Some may require extensive care for physical or emotional handicaps or disabilities. Many foster children have been victims of physical or sexual abuse, some have suffered neglect and some children and infants require medical care. Here are some basic questions answered about foster parenting:
-The basic requirements to be a foster parent are that you must 21 years of age or older and a responsible, mature individual. You, your family and a social worker will meet several times to discuss foster parenting and your background.
-Foster parents receive money for the room, board and other living expenses from the placement agency. There are also supplemental payments for the care of children with special needs.
-Foster children are covered by Title XIX (medical assistance) or the insurance of their parents.
-Usually the children will have visits with their parents. Your social worker will help schedule the visits and make travel arrangements. You can take a foster child on vacation, however you must get prior approval from the supervising agency.
-Most foster children are not available for adoption. If a child does become adoptable, the foster family may apply.
-There are certain sleeping arrangements for a foster child. Children over one year old may not share a bedroom with an adult. Children over six years old may not share a bedroom with a child of the opposite sex and each foster child must have his or her own bed.
Any other questions call Pam at (262)335-4665.
Long-term Support Services - For children age birth to three, families and those with children with intensive care needs
Child Care Certification - Certification of day care providers for care of children whose parents are working and are eligible for day care subsidy or day care as part of a protective service plan.
Call Human Services at (262)335-4687 for
more information regarding:
-Information About Certification
-Criminal Background Checks
For more information on any
of the programs please call (262)335-4610.
Manager Sandy Potter (262)335-4610
Providing Help to Make It Through Challenging Times
Limited incomes and unexpected financial problems can make it difficult to provide a healthy, safe environment for individuals and their families. Our Economic Support division offers financial assistance programs to help financially troubled residents of Washington County to sustain or improve their quality of life. Our experienced staff will work with you, guiding you through the process to ensure best results.
Effective January 3, 2012 the Moraine Lakes Consortium will open a Call Change Center to handle questions regarding BadgerCare Plus, Medicaid, FoodShare and Child Care. This call center will be staffed by experienced workers from all 5 counties in our consortium including : Fond du Lac, Ozaukee, Walworth, Washington and Waukesha.
To apply for benefits, report changes, complete renewals or check on benefits, members are encouraged to use the online system at www.access.wi.gov.
To contact our Call Change Center the phone number is 1-888-446-1239. The hours are 8:00am to 4:00pm Monday through Friday. Wednesday the Call Change Center opens at 10am.
Documents, verification and paper applications must be sent to:
Centralized Document Processing Unit (CDPU)
PO Box 5234
Janesville WI 53547-5234
or by fax:
Badger Care Plus
-Children (under age 19)
-Dependent 18 year old children who attend high school
-Children living with relatives
Since February 1, 2008, all children in Wisconsin have been able to get the health care they need at a price their families can afford through BadgerCare Plus. BadgerCare Plus allows every Wisconsin family, regardless of income, to have access to affordable, comprehensive health care coverage for their kids. In addition, BadgerCare Plus also offers coverage for more pregnant women, self-employed parents and farmers, and youth aging out of foster care. Low income families can enroll their children into BadgerCare Plus at no charge. Family must cooperate with Child Support in order to be eligible. Co-payments for health care services range from $.50 to $3.00 for families with lower incomes. Families with higher incomes will be required to pay reasonable monthly premiums and co-payments for certain services. Co-payments for health care services range from $5.00 for prescription drugs and $100.00 for a hospital stay. Under both plans, there are no co-payments for well child checkups and other preventive services. It is easy to apply for BadgerCare Plus. Simply go to www.badgercareplus.org and fill out the online application for this program and other health and nutrition programs. The online application is a convenient way for families to access the health and nutrition benefits they need. For more information about BadgerCare Plus call 1-800-362-3002.
Go to www.access.wi.gov or contact our Call Change Center at 1-888-446-1239 to apply.
To find out if you qualify or want to apply for the Core Plan for Childless Adults visit www.access.wi.gov.
Apply for BadgerCare Plus
Child Care Assistance – Helps working families
offset the cost of day care
Help is available for low income families who need child care for employment. Families must meet financial guidelines to be eligible. The childcare provider must be a licensed group or family center or be a certified provider. Parents pay part of the cost of day care based on family size, the number of children in day care, the type of provider used and family gross income. Payments are made directly to the day care provider through a state payment system.
Go to www.access.wi.gov or call 1-888-446-1239 to apply.
National Child Care Information and Technical Assistance Center
Choosing Child Care
Energy Assistance – Assists low income families and individuals to pay heating bills during the heating season, October 1 through May 15
The Wisconsin Home Energy Assistance Program (WHEAP) helps eligible households pay for heating costs. Eligibility is determined by the total gross income received three months prior to application, the number of persons in the household, and heating costs. Emergency services are available during the heating season (Oct-May). Emergency services may include purchasing heating fuel or services, providing a warm place to stay, or providing help with furnace repair or replacement. Proactive services are available on a year-round basis to provide help in budgeting for energy expenses and information on how to reduce heating costs. There is also weatherization service available to qualified households.
To get an application or make an appointment call Client Registration at (262)335-4677.
More Energy Assistance Information
FoodShare – Enables those with limited income to buy food necessary for good health
Food Share is issued monthly to eligible persons to purchase edible items. The food share household must pass both non-financial and financial eligibility tests in order to receive food share. Eligibility is based on household size, income, assets, shelter and child care expenses, and also, for elderly and disabled persons, medical expenses. Food Share is issued through an EBT card (like a debit/credit card) called a Quest Card.
Go to www.access.wi.gov or call 1-888-446-1239 to apply for a family with children under the age of 19.
Call 1-888-446-1239 or click on the ACCESS website to apply online for an adult age 19-64.
ACCESS Application to apply online
Printable Food Share Application
Check your benefits or report a change in your case
Frequently asked questions
Medicaid – Medical Assistance (T-19) for elderly, blind or disabled individuals including nursing home and family care
Potentially eligible income adults:
- Persons 65 or older or blind or disabled
- Persons residing in institutions or nursing homes
- SSI Recipients
The Medical Assistance Program pays for medical care for
eligible people. Eligibility is based on your family's gross
(before taxes) income. There is an asset limit for some
Medical Assistance Programs. Eligible recipients receive an
EBT card called a Forward Card (like a debit/credit card)
which is used to pay for all necessary medical expenses.
Some services require co-payment. If you are under-
insured and/or don't have health coverage you may be
eligible for Medical Assistance.
Go to www.access.wi.gov or call 1-888-446-1239 to apply.
Wisconsin Medicaid Providers
Wisconsin Works (W-2)
The primary purpose of Wisconsin Works (W-2) is to prepare eligible parents, who are not job ready to help them provide for their families and become self sufficient members of the community in which they live. Participants receive wages from employment or a monthly payment for performing assigned work activities. Participants may also receive assistance in paying for childcare, transportation and other employment related needs. Cooperation with the Child Support Agency is a requirement of the W-2 program. Families must pass an income and asset test.
Call Joy at Arbor E & T (262) 335-5310 to apply or to receive more information.