TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
RE: REESTABLISHING THE FAMILY SERVICES CABINET COUNCIL
WHEREAS, Strong Delaware families are the bedrocks of our communities up and down the State; and
WHEREAS, an ever increasing number of Delaware children continue to grow up in poverty, in neighborhoods plagued by violence and drugs, and without adequate child care, housing and health care; and
WHEREAS, many Delaware families lack the necessary resources and skills to ensure that their children can thrive in an ever-changing world; and
WHEREAS, due to difficult home environments, some Delaware children are unable to take advantage of the opportunities that a quality education provides; and
WHEREAS, the Delaware elderly population continues to grow substantially and many Delaware families must contend with the emotional and financial impact of caring for an aging family member; and
WHEREAS, the confluence of economic, social and demographic changes have created immense strain on families, leading to higher levels of domestic violence, substance abuse, and other phenomena which make it very difficult for families to thrive; and
WHEREAS, Delaware has a proud tradition of public and private community partnerships, which improve the lives of families; and
WHEREAS, the expansive network of existing services throughout the State continues to be fragmented, is difficult to navigate, often does not provide convenient services for working parents, and does not provide the full range of services necessary to address the needs of Delaware families; and
WHEREAS, the Family Services Cabinet Council (“Council”) was established by Executive Order Number Six by Governor Carper, dated May 17, 1993; and
WHEREAS, under Governor Carper’s leadership, real and substantial progress was made in coordinating services for young children, expanding school wellness centers in high schools, and expanding parent support through home visiting; and
WHEREAS, the most important accomplishment of the original Council was establishing an expectation among the participating agencies that they must coordinate and collaborate wherever they could to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the services they deliver to Delaware families.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOHN C. CARNEY, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Delaware, do hereby DECLARE and ORDER that:
- The Family Services Cabinet Council is hereby reestablished to develop a statewide family strategy to assure that public and private initiatives are coordinated and focused to provide the support and assistance required for the success of families in today’s society.
- The mission of the Council shall be to design and implement new service alternatives for school and community-based family-centered services, and otherwise act as a catalyst for public-private partnerships to reduce service fragmentation and make it easier for families to get supportive services.
- Specifically, the Council is tasked, but not limited to, developing recommendations for implementing innovative tools and strategies for addressing:
a. Breaking the school-to-prison pipeline.
b. Early childhood education.
c. Increasing affordable housing.
d. Substance abuse and treatment.
e. Prison re-entry issues and its collateral effects.
f. The violence epidemic in neighborhoods.
g. Job training.
- The Council, in conjunction with the Government Efficiency and Accountability Review Board (“GEAR”), shall also make recommendations regarding the appropriate responsibilities of all interagency and departmental boards, commissions, committees and other State governmental entities involved in the delivery or coordination of services to families, with the goal of maximizing their effectiveness by eliminating overlap and clarifying their respective missions.
- The Council shall review and, where appropriate, propose modifications of existing public programs and other initiatives to target present and proposed resources, including general funds, Federal funds, and other sources, so as to provide the most effective assistance to families.
- The Council shall work with its constituent agencies to coordinate their respective budget priorities and requests to best advance the statewide family strategy.
- The Council shall coordinate the State’s efforts to secure Federal grants related to the support of families before such grant proposals are submitted for approval by the Delaware State Clearinghouse and shall advise the Clearinghouse and the agencies involved regarding issues related to coordination and consistency with the statewide family strategy.
- The Council shall be composed of the Governor, the Secretary of the Department of Services for Children, Youth, and Their Families, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Social Services, the Secretary of the Department of Education, the Secretary of the Department of Labor, the Secretary of the Department of Safety and Homeland Security, the Director of the Delaware State Housing Authority, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the Commissioner of the Department of Correction, and such others as the Governor shall appoint.
- The Governor shall be the Chairperson of the Council, and a Vice Chairperson shall be selected by the Governor on a rotating basis from among the other members of the Council.
- The Council shall form such committees, including membership beyond its members, as necessary to do its work. All members will make resources available from their respective organizations as needed to achieve the goals of the Council.
- Administrative support for the Council shall be provided by existing staff within each of the member State government agencies and from the Office of the Governor.
- Executive Order Six, approved by Governor Carper and dated May 13, 1993, is hereby rescinded.
APPROVED this 28th date of February 2017.
John C. Carney
Secretary of State
PDF of the Executive Order