Tough Questions: Hamilton County Jobs and Family Services

FOX19 sat down with the Moira Weir, the Director of the Hamilton County Department of Jobs and Family Services, to ask the tough questions surrounding the DeMarcus Jackson case.

The first question surrounded the Attorney General's calls for safety to remain the top priority in cases of reuniting children with their biological parents.

The following and excepts from the interview: 

Do you feel, right now, you are very confident that safety came first in this case?

"Certainly the outcome of this case is tragic. It's awful nobody would have predicted that. But I think it is always wonderful to remind people that safety is certainly the number one priority for all of us." 

Are you convinced it was in this case?

"I think the investigation will unfold, but I can tell you our practice is and has always been that safety is paramount."

Last week in your blog you referenced that you really want to make sure that this agency continues to be transparent and continues to be trustworthy. What you said was 'I knew we could not become the center of that community-wide effort if we did not have your trust. I think we have made progress.' Is this a step backwards?

"One of the things that I think is important, always, is to try to be transparent. We're welcoming anyone that wants to come in and review the case. I think it's always a good thing. I know I leave the office everyday thinking 'I could have learned something today or done something differently'. "

After reading about what happened a viewer wrote in saying 'The people who are supposed to protect our children are obviously not doing their job. I am so disappointed in the system that it makes me sick. These babies depend on these people to protect them & they keep letting them down!!' What do you have to say to that kind of a comment?

"I am sorry that person feels that way but I will tell you from my experience people do care and they really want to do a good job."

Do you feel right now that you have the community's trust?

"I would like to say that we hope so but does anybody always have the community's trust? All I can do is keep saying that we are here and we want to be as transparent as we can."

So you feel like you're doing the job?

"I think our staff are doing a good job. Obviously we'll wait to see what the outcome of the investigation is."

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