Administration for Children's Services311Search all NYC.gov websites

ACS Divisions

Commissioner’s Office
Office of the First Deputy Commissioner, Division of Coordination and Integration of Services
Administration
Communications and Community Affairs
Child and Family Well-Being
Child Welfare Programs
Child Protection
Family Court Legal Services
Family Permanency Services
Financial Services
General Counsel
Policy, Planning & Measurement
Preventive Services
Youth and Family Justice

Commissioner’s Office

The Commissioner’s Office is the central management point for the daily operations of the agency and the first point of contact for external partners.

The Commissioner’s Office includes:

  • The Office of Equal Employment Opportunity ensures compliance with applicable Federal, State and City employment laws that prohibit discrimination based on color, creed, religion, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, alienage or prior record of arrest or conviction (under some circumstances).

  • The Investigative Consultants program, a team of former law enforcement investigators, provides training, consultation and support to ACS investigative staff.

  • The Office of Safety First assists mandated reporters to resolve concerns about the progress of a current or closed child protective investigation.

  • The Office of Information Technology (OIT) provides IT solutions to address the agency’s overall business and operational needs. OIT to implements and oversees compliance with city and state IT policies and procedures.

Back to Top

Office of the First Deputy Commissioner, Division of Coordination and Integration of Services

The Office plays a significant role in implementing agency goals and carries out ACS’ mission to foster a collaborative, community-based, integrated approach to child and family safety, permanency, and well-being. The First Deputy Commissioner serves as the Commissioner’s senior delegate and represents the Commissioner when necessary.

The Division includes the following offices:

  • The Office of Family Engagement & Youth Advocacy works to ensure that the youth and families we serve in have a voice in ACS policy development and program planning. Advocates provide support to youth and families and gather information to understand the impact of ACS’ interventions. In order to receive input from young people and families involved in our systems, the Office meets regularly with youth and families to hear concerns, thoughts, and ideas for system improvement.

  • The Office of In-Kind Contributions and Pro-Bono Resources works with ACS leadership and external stakeholders to identify needs and provide programming and resources to our children, youth, and families.

  • The Office of Children and Family Health manages health care issues throughout the agency, providing expert technical assistance to our child welfare, juvenile justice, and child care programs. The Office also develops and implements strategies to enhance the understanding of medical issues throughout our systems in order to improve case practice and outcomes.

  • The Office of Development and Special Project is ACS’ liaison to the philanthropic community. The Office also manages private and government funding for several strategic initiatives. This Office also serves as the agency’s primary point of contact with New Yorkers for Children, ACS’ non-profit partner.

  • The Office of Advocacy responds to the concerns of parents, youth, foster parents, and others affected by the child welfare juvenile justice systems, and other ACS services. The Office also responds to questions from the general public.

Back to Top

Administration

The Division of Administration ensures that ACS has the resources and support necessary to function efficiently and effectively.

Offices within the division include Procurement, Facilities, Personnel, Administrative Services, and Accountability and Audit.

The division’s functions include personnel management as well as building maintenance, workplace safety, health, and security, transportation, purchasing of goods and services, graphic services, and records management.

Communications and Community Affairs

The Division of Communications and Community Affairs comprises of the Office of Communications and the Office of Intergovernmental and Interagency Affairs.
  • The Office of Communications works with both internal and external stakeholders to ensure that the agency speaks with one, consistent voice regarding the priorities of ACS and also promotes and supports all ACS divisions with their programs and initiatives.

  • The Office of Intergovernmental Affairs and Interagency Affairs is the main point of contact for elected officials within the agency, and is responsible for working with elected officials and other stakeholders to advance the mission of ACS.

Back to Top

Child and Family Well-Being

The Division of Child and Family Well-Being (CFWB) works to ensure critical supports to families and children, and is rooted in the belief that all New Yorkers should have health resources, and educational, cultural and social opportunities that support their capacity to thrive. Using a two-generation framework and equity lens, CFWB focuses on leveraging resources, eliminating disparities and barriers, and creating critical connections to valuable information and services that will enhance whole family social capital, health and well-being, education and economic supports. Our work includes the provision of quality early care and education services, as well as public education campaigns, an equity-focused framework, and a place-based approach via the Community Partnership Programs.

The Division has the following units:

  • The Child Care Operations Unit supports eligibility determination and resolving enrollment issues. Further, this unit staffs a hotline which receives almost 10,000 calls per month from families and child care providers.

  • The Programs Unit oversees the EarlyLearn contracted care system. Within the unit, there are teams that provide technical assistance, training support, and monitoring of the 149 contracted EarlyLearn NYC programs, which serve more than 38,000 children in 380 center-based programs and via 30 Family Child Care Networks. Further, the teams manage all aspects of the EarlyLearn NYC contracts, including governance and performance evaluation.

  • The Performance Unit works across the entire Division to provide vital supports. Within the Unit are: the Policy and Procedure team, which performs all tasks to ensure compliance with regulations that govern our city, state, and federal funding streams; the Data Management and Systems unit, which oversees the data collected through ACCIS (Automated Child Care Information System), the centralized database for subsidized early care and education services; and the Administrative Services team.

  • The Office of Community Engagement and Partnerships manages ACS’ Community Partnership Program, which develop external relationships with community partners and city agencies in order to strengthen ACS’ work with children and families throughout NYC.

  • Safe Sleep Unit oversees the Safe Sleep campaign across all of NYC, providing vital information to ensure that babies are put safely to sleep and that sleep-related injuries and deaths.

  • The Office of Equity will offer a framework for data review, program development and evaluation along key equity indicators including race, gender and sexual identity.

Back to Top

Child Welfare Programs

Child Welfare Programs is an umbrella group which integrates and aligns the work across the Divisions of Child Protection (DCP), Family Permanency Services (FPS) and Preventive Services (DPS). Additionally, CWP oversees the following areas:

  • The Nicholas Scoppetta Children’s Center is the temporary residence for children coming into care until a permanent placement is found.

  • The Office of Placements Services coordinates with foster care agencies to help ensure that children are placed in the best possible setting in foster care.

  • The Office of Education Support and Policy Planning supports the agency’s education-focused policy and planning matters for all children and youth who are receiving ACS services through consultations, training, policy development and advocacy services.

  • The Developmental Disabilities Unit assists agencies to move children in care with developmental disabilities through the New York State Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) eligibility determination process, and supports OPWDD referrals for children who require lifelong supports and adult residential care when they age out of foster care.

  • The Office of Clinical Practice, Policy and Support is responsible for the planning, development and oversight of clinical policy and practice in the areas of mental health, substance use, and domestic violence issues affecting children and families.

Back to Top

Child Protection

The Division of Child Protection (DCP) investigates all allegations of child abuse and neglect that the City receives from the New York Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment. Each year the division investigates about 55,000 reported cases. The division is comprised of approximately 3,500 employees spread across the five boroughs at nineteen sites.

The Division includes the following offices:

  • Child Protective Borough Offices made up of teams of child protective specialists who investigate reported cases of abuse and neglect.

  • Emergency Children’s Services provides 24-hour investigative coverage, including on evenings and weekends.

  • The Office of Special Investigations investigates reports that involve foster parents, child care providers, and ACS staff.

  • Family Preservation and Family Services Units provide case management services when a New York State Family Court Judge prescribes court ordered supervision for a family as a result of a child abuse investigation.

Back to Top

Family Court Legal Services

The Division of Family Court Legal Services is responsible for representing Children's Services in child welfare proceedings in the New York City Family Courts. The division provides legal assistance for the agency and foster care provider agencies and training for attorneys and caseworkers on Family Court practice.

The following units are part of FCLS:

  • Family Court Litigation Units located in the five New York City Family Courts represents Children’s Services in court proceedings.

  • The Legal Support and Training Unit provides training for attorney and child welfare staff as well as litigation support for the FCLS court units. In addition the unit provides legal advice to other Children’s Services program areas. The unit also develops policies and procedures for the division and provides input into agency policies and legislation.

  • Legal Compliance Unit assists FCLS attorneys with issues involving compliance with court orders, expediting provision of services, guidance on agency policies, federal and state regulations, immigration issues, and other issues impacting permanency and well-being of children.

  • Title IV-E Management Unit assists the Central Eligibility Unit by obtaining court orders and legal documents to support claims for Federal and State Reimbursement for foster care and adoption.

  • Court Document Dissemination Unit obtains and distributes court orders to Children’s Services and provider agency staff.

  • Contract Management Unit manages the contracts for process service, expert witnesses and court transcripts.

Back to Top

Family Permanency Services

The Division of Family Permanency Services ensures that high quality services are provided to children in foster care by providing partner agency staff with technical assistance and services support.

The Division includes the following offices:

  • Older Youth Services and Residential Care Monitoring unit provides technical assistance and supportive services to older youth as well as special populations who are in foster care.

  • Provider Agency Consultation and Engagement provides technical assistance and support to the network of provider agencies serving youth who are in family foster care, treatment family foster care and in specialized settings by promoting better, more informed case decision-making and service delivery outcomes.

  • Child and Youth Initiatives Unit develops and manages new initiatives and programs in the areas of employment, housing, health and education to help promote permanency for youth in care.

  • Central Operations manages all process related matters dealing with children and youth who are in foster care, as well as support to those families seeking housing, child care and access to vital records.

Back to Top

Financial Services

The Division of Financial Services is responsible for planning, implementing, and monitoring the fiscal functions of the agency in accordance with City, State and Federal oversight guidelines.

DFS is comprised of five major departments:

  • Budget department is responsible for planning and monitoring the agency budget, working closely with ACS executive management to ensure that agency priorities and initiatives are adequately funded and for acting as liaison with budgetary oversight entities including the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget.

  • Claiming & Revenue Accounting is responsible for planning, implementing and verifying the receipt of all appropriate revenues for the agency from the City, State and Federal governments.

  • Finance Audit & Banking monitors the financial health of provider agencies through financial review and audits and maintains all agency bank accounts.

  • Payment Services ensures that provider agencies, vendors, and clients are reimbursed for goods and services in a timely and accurate manner.

  • Revenue Maximization ensures the accurate and timely eligibility review of child welfare cases for the agency and the maintenance of accurate case data for those cases.

Back to Top

General Counsel

The Office of the General Counsel-works closely with the City of New York’s Corporation Counsel to defend ACS in class action lawsuits and coordinates with legal and program area staff to ensure compliance with court orders, consent decrees and other legal and regulatory mandates.

OGC includes the following units/offices:

  • Business Law Unit provides legal counsel on all business, contract, and procurement law matters.

  • Employment Law Unit handles various employment issues including training on disciplinary and other employment issues.

  • Fair Hearings & Compliance Unit represents ACS at administrative hearings before both the NYS Office of Children and Family Services and the NYS Office for Temporary and Disability Assistance, on issues concerning ACS services.

  • Legal Counsel Unit conducts legal research, drafts memoranda, reviews and provides opinions relating to laws, regulations, and policies governing ACS services, pending legislation and regulations, and assists in drafting new policies and procedures.

  • The Labor Relations Unit maintains an effective relationship with union and labor organizations representing ACS employees, and resolving local labor-management issues.

  • The Records & Compliance Unit responds to records requests and acts as the entry point for employment and foster care status verifications.

  • The Special Projects Unit provides legal advice on policy and program issues, and acts as the in-house counsel, conducting legal research, interpreting laws and regulations governing the provision of ACS services.

Back to Top

Policy Planning and Measurement

The Division of Policy, Planning, and Measurement works to assure quality of practice at ACS and its partner agencies, professionalize the frontline workforce, bring knowledge to practice, provide research and analytic support, and plan and develop new programs and policies.

The Division includes the following offices:

  • The Office of Systems Analysis and Improvement conducts critical assessments of operational areas within ACS to identify issues and recommend strategies to enhance practice and streamline systems.

  • The Office of Research and Analysis provides data, reports, and analysis for the agency, as well as for other agencies, the public and elected officials.

  • The Office of Performance Measurement, Monitoring and Improvement is responsible for monitoring the performance, managing quality improvement efforts and corrective actions of provider agencies, and identifying overall trends in practice across the child welfare system.

  • The Office of Program Innovation and Planning is responsible for management ad oversight of policy development, new program development, child welfare contract management, LGBTQ policy and practice innovation, health policy specifically around Medicaid redesign, and the Title IV-E waiver demonstration project.

  • The Office of Training and Workforce Innovation prepares frontline staff across the family and child services systems with professional skills training and practice-related knowledge, including the skills required to promote child safety and well-being.

Back to Top

Preventive Services

The Division of Preventive Services oversees the delivery and monitoring of preventive services for children and families in their community through our contracted providers. DPS aims to reduce the gap between poor infant/child/adolescent developmental and adult outcomes by promoting child and parent well-being, strengthening the ability of parents and guardians to keep their children safe, and reducing the risk of repeat maltreatment, neglect and placements/re-placements into foster care.

The Division includes the following Offices:

  • The Office of Preventive Family Team Conferencing (OPFTC) works with providers to conduct Family Team Conferences, to engage families, community members, and service providers in critical decisions related to safety, risk, well-being and service planning.

  • The Office of Family Home Care oversees the Family Home Care program which provides crisis intervention services to ensure that children remain in their homes and communities when possible.

  • OPTA provides technical assistance to strengthen case practice and improve access to preventive services. In addition to the assessment of the quality and safety of preventive agency practices, OPTA identifies needs and provides support to contracted provider agencies to address and improve performance gaps.

Back to Top

Youth and Family Justice

The Division of Youth and Family Justice (DYFJ) provides a wide range of services and programs for youth at every stage of the juvenile justice process. Our goals are to build stronger and safer communities and advance public safety by preventing juveniles from entering the New York City’s juvenile justice system, to provide therapeutic treatment and services to youth in our custodial care, and to help juveniles develop the tools to leave the justice system for good. We strive to help families and young people by providing supportive services that are responsive to the needs of individual youth and families.

The Division includes the following Offices and program areas:

  • Community-Based Alternatives provides preventive services to youth at risk of getting involved in the system through the Family Assessment Program (FAP). It also oversees alternative programs that prevent youth from being detained or placed in a residential setting.

  • Detention provides secure and non-secure detention services for justice-involved youth whose cases are pending in Family or Criminal Courts.

  • Close to Home provides residential placement services for Juvenile Delinquents in a homelike setting close to their families and communities.

  • The Office of Juvenile Justice Programs and Services provides support across the Division by ensuring that our youth receive comprehensive and consistent medical, mental health, case management, and social services throughout their involvement with the juvenile justice system, and developing and overseeing the Division’s continuum of programming and services.

  • The Office of Planning, Policy and Performance is responsible for monitoring detention, placement, aftercare, and community-based service providers’ performance, and to support the providers through technical assistance.