Advocate & Collaborate
The Ombudsman responds to questions, concerns or complaints regarding children involved with the state’s child welfare and juvenile justice systems. Referrals are accepted from anyone. A mediation approach is used to resolve disputes in the best interests of the child and the safety of the community
TCCY has administrative responsibility for the Council on Children’s Mental Health (CCMH) charged with designing a plan for a statewide system of mental health care for children. The Council, composed of a broad range of stakeholders from all across the state, is co-chaired by the commissioner of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services and the executive director of TCCY.
The Council was created to develop a youth-driven, family-focused, culturally and linguistically competent service delivery system that includes a core set of services and supports appropriately and effectively addressing the mental health needs of children and families.
TCCY has intensified its advocacy of and collaboration for Early Child Well-Being/Adverse Childhood Experiences. This work, including training, collaboration and advocacy on a number of levels, is being overseen by Jennifer Drake Croft.
TCCY has administrative responsibilities over the Home Visiting Leadership Alliance (HVLA) through a grant agreement with the Department of Health (TDH) and is charged with developing a sustainability plan for evidence-based home visiting programs in Tennessee. The HVLA is co-chaired by TDH and TCCY and includes leadership from home visiting programs, state departments and stakeholders from across the state.
Administered by TCCY, the Second Look Commission (SLC) was established to review a sampling of cases involving a second or subsequent incident of severe child abuse and provide recommendations and findings to the General Assembly regarding whether or not severe child abuse responses provide adequate protection for the children of this state.
The SLC is co-chaired by Senate and House members, and includes representatives from the Department of Children’s Services (DCS), law enforcement, courts, child abuse service providers and the advocacy community. It reports annually to the General Assembly.
The Youth Transitions Advisory Council (YTAC) brings together young people and other stakeholders from across Tennessee who work with youth aging out of DCS custody and transitioning from child-serving to adult services systems. YTAC makes recommendations to DCS, courts, schools, higher education and service providers to improve outcomes for successful transition from adolescence to adulthood for young people who often do not have supportive families.