September 03, 2021
CASA Visitation Policies August 2021
No one is required to DO in-person visits with their CASA child(ren).
The safety of our volunteers is a priority for our program as we continue to advocate for children. This policy has been created to communicate the protocol for in-person visitation with the children and families we serve while focusing on the health and safety of you, our volunteers. We will support all levels of safe and prepared visitation. We will not be mandating our volunteers to do in-person visits. We do ask that each CASA maintain a virtual or in-person visit with their child(ren) a minimum of once every 30 days.
Washington State Governor Jay updated and extended two emergency proclamations that expand the vaccine requirement and the statewide face-covering requirement. The expanded emergency orders are Proclamations 20-25, Washington Ready; and 21-14, Vaccination Requirement.
- Proclamation 20-25 is amended to adopt the most recent face-covering order issued by the Secretary of Health, Order 20-03.4. Under this order, every person in Washington must wear a face covering when they are in a place that is generally accessible to any person from outside their household, subject to specific exceptions and exemptions.
- Proclamation 21-14 (Vaccination Requirement) is expanded to include all employees, on-site contractors, and on-site volunteers at all public and private K-12 schools, public and private 2- and 4-year institutions of higher education, and early learning and childcare programs serving children from multiple households.
If an in-person visit occurs, we highly recommend outdoor visitation with appropriate social distancing and wearing an appropriate face mask.
Please ask the permission of parents and caregivers to in-person visitation. We will leave it up to the CASAs, kids, parents, and placement caregivers to decide if they are comfortable doing outdoor visits or indoor visits when appropriate.
All CASAs must wear face masks when attending an in-person visit and maintain social distancing.
If you do not have Personal Protection Equipment (masks, hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes, disposable tissues), please let us know and we will provide them for you to conduct your visit.
Before the Visit Questions
Please ask the following questions of the caregiver before your visit. You will need to make your own assessment as to whether the in-person visit is safe for you and those attending.
- Has anyone in the household had signs or symptoms of a fever in the last 24 hours such as chills, sweats, felt “feverish” or had a temperature that is elevated for you, or 100 degrees or greater?
- Does anyone currently have any of these symptoms- cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, nasal congestion/runny nose, body aches, diarrhea/nausea/vomiting, or loss of taste or smell?
- Has anyone in your household traveled outside of your local area in the last 14 days?
- Has anyone in the household had contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the last 14 days?
**If the answer is yes to any of these questions, not only for the placement but for you, we recommend that you schedule a visit for 7+ days later.
- Ask if they have access to facemasks and request that they wear one during the visit
- Please request that all those over the age of three attending the visit also wear a facemask
**If the caregivers do not have facemasks, please let us know and we can provide them.
Safety Protocols for Visitation
- Stay home when sick–If you or someone at home has symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home. See a list of symptoms here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html
- If the temperature is over 100.4 degrees, do not attend the visit.
- Cover sneezes or coughs with a disposable tissue, if possible, dispose and wash your hands afterward; or if no tissue, use an elbow or shoulder.
- Visit participants over the age of 2 years old will need to wear a mask or cloth face covering that covers the mouth and nose.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Do not shake hands.
- Sorry, no hugs.
- Create distance, when possible, at least 6 feet.
- Visitation is limited to the person(s) identified in the court’s order on visits. If there are visitors that have been approved by the caseworker, the parent may use their phone or video conference equipment to include any additional participants remotely.
- If the parent wishes to bring toys/items to the visit, the toy/item must be wiped down prior to giving to the child, and the toy/item should not go with the child back to their foster or caregiver home.
- Visit Supervisor (if applicable) needs to practice social distancing during visitation.
- It is not expected that the parent and child(ren) will practice social distancing during a visitation.
- Coronavirus – COVID 19 Updates from DCYF https://www.dcyf.wa.gov/coronavirus-covid-19
After an in-person visit…
For each in-person visitation, please send us an email after your visit with the following information:
- Location (please indicate indoors/outdoors/both)
If safety protocols are not being followed, in-person visitation will be restricted or canceled.