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Health department restores funding for child abuse prevention contracts

Oklahoma State Department of Health

OKLAHOMA CITY – After budget cuts caused several state agencies to take a closer look at their expenses, the Oklahoma State Department of Health was forced to cut funding for the Office of Child Abuse Prevention.

Officials say funding had been cut by former agency leadership from the 2018 fiscal budget, terminating contracts with partner organizations involved in the Parents as Teachers home visiting program.

On Monday, the agency announced that it was able to restore $2 million in contract funding for the office for the upcoming fiscal year.

“I am pleased that we are able to restore the OCAP to its previous level of funding,” said Interim OSDH Commissioner Tom Bates. “We must focus on delivering core public health services and fulfill mandates required by the legislature. This is an important piece of our statewide effort in child abuse prevention.”

“OCAP contracts are just one part of our overall effort to prevent child abuse,” said Beth Martin, interim director for OSDH Family Support and Prevention Service. “A continuum of services including the Parents as Teachers program, allows us to reach families that might otherwise fall through the cracks.”

The restored funding will provide for up to 10 contracts that will be awarded following the review of Requests for Proposals.