6302. Administrative Incident Reporting

Approval: Jennifer Strus, Assistant Secretary

Original Date:

Revised Date: July 1, 2016

Sunset Review: July 1, 2020


Establish requirements for the timely notification, documentation and management of administrative incidents. Administrative incidents are serious and emergent situations involving Children’s Administration (CA) clients, staff and providers, and include:

  • Critical incidents (Near-Fatality or Fatality of a Child)
  • Client related incidents
  • Provider related incidents
  • Staff safety
  • Theft, vandalism or property damage

Documentation of these incidents in the Administrative Incident Reporting System (AIRS) is used to identify issues, patterns and trends, and determine needed actions to address the safety of children, clients, and staff.


This policy applies to CA staff.


Executive Order 96-01

RCW 74.13.500 Disclosure of child welfare records

RCW 74.14A.020 Services for emotionally disturbed and mentally ill children, potentially dependent children, and families-in-conflict

RCW 74.14A.025 Services for emotionally disturbed and mentally ill children, potentially dependent children, and families-in-conflict

RCW 26.44.020 Definitions

WAC 388-06A-0170 Will a criminal conviction permanently prohibit me from being licensed, contracted, certified, or authorized to have unsupervised access to children?

WAC 388-06A-0180 Are there other criminal convictions that will prohibit me from being licensed, contracted, certified, or authorized to have unsupervised access to children or from working with children

WAC 388-70-095 Foster care for Indian children — Serious injury, death, abandonment, child abuse, neglect, incarceration.


  1. CA staff will immediately notify his or her supervisor when learning of an Administrative Incident .
  2. The supervisor will immediately notify law enforcement when there is reason to believe an Administrative Incident involves a crime.
  3. Employee Misconduct (Not documented in AIRS)
    1. CA staff will:
      1. Immediately notify his or her supervisor when learning of allegations of employee misconduct or criminal conduct. 
      2. Refer to Administrative 18.62 and 18.64 policies located on the DSHS intranet.
    2. The supervisor will immediately notify his or her chain of command up to the regional administrator (RA) or Division of Licensed Resources (DLR) administrator.
    3. The RA or designee or DLR administrator or designee, will notify the director of Field Operations or designee of the alleged misconduct within 48 hours; the director will notify the assistant secretary.
  4. Critical Incidents
    1. Critical incidents include
      1. Child fatalities or near-fatalities
        1. That occurred on an open case at the time of the fatality or near-fatality or there was CA history on the family within 12 months of the fatality or near-fatality, including intakes screened out for investigation.
        2. That occurred in a CA or Department of Early Learning (DEL) licensed, certified, or state operated facility.
      2. High Profile incidents that may generate significant interest by the media, the legislature or the Governor's Office.
    2. The regional designee will document critical incidents in AIRS within one hour of being notified of the incident. If one hour is not possible, the designee must notify his or her chain of command up to the director of Field Operations or designee.
    3. CA staff will notify intake to create a new intake when:
      1. A child fatality or near-fatality is suspicious for child abuse or neglect.
      2. A child dies and there is an open case on that child or while placed in a CA licensed or state operated facility.
    4. The intake or unit supervisor will update AIRS and document in a case note if a near-fatality becomes a fatality due to the circumstances described in the original intake. A new intake is not required.
    5. CA intake will inform an Indian child’s tribe when there is a fatality or near-fatality within 24 hours of learning of the incident.
  5. Other Administrative Incidents
    1. The supervisor will document all other administrative incidents in AIRS within 24 hours of receiving notification. Other administrative incidents include:
      1. Client Related Incidents  serious injury of a child client on an open case requiring professional medical treatment (beyond first aid treatment) alleged to be the result of:
        1. A serious injury of a child client on an open case requiring professional medical treatment (beyond first aid treatment) alleged to be the result of:
          1. Physical abuse
          2. Sexual abuse
          3. Neglect
          4. Unexplained injury
          5. Injury that is not consistent with parent or caregiver(s) explanation.
        2. Allegations of molestation or rape by an adult caregiver of a child client who is in the care and supervision of CA.
        3. A suicide, suicide attempt or a near-fatal injury of a child client.
        4. Placement of a child in any of the following:
          1. DSHS office due to no placement resource available.
          2. Detention facilities for children in CA care and custody.
          3. Apartments or hotels
        5. Placement is not allowed in an institution not designed for children, such as adult mental hospitals and detoxification facilities, or institutions or homes with caregivers who don’t have the specialized training required to care for a child with sexually aggressive or physically assaultive behaviors per 4536. Sexually Aggressive Youth, 45362. Physically Aggressive Youth and 4413. Placement Services policies.
        6. Any other client-related incident that does not fall into one of the previously identified categories believed to require administrative notification or attention.
      2. Provider-Related Misconduct Incidents occurring in a facility licensed or subject to licensing by DSHS or DEL or other facilities certified by DSHS. Misconduct includes:
        1. Alleged criminal activity
        2. A conviction disqualifying a licensed provider from providing care to children.  WAC 388-06A-0170 & 388-06A-0180
        3. Any arrest or pending arrest for:
          1. Child abuse or neglect
          2. Spousal abuse (domestic violence)
          3. A crime against a child
          4. A crime involving violence (including rape, sexual assault, or homicide but not including other physical assault or battery)
          5. Felony physical assault or battery offense
        4. Felony drug-related crimes including:
          1. The Imitation Controlled Substances Act. RCW Chapter 69.52
          2. Illegal sale and distribution of prescription drugs. RCW Chapter 69.41
          3. Selling, transferring, or otherwise furnishing to any person substances used in making controlled substances. RCW Chapter 69.43
          4. Illegal drugs or substances use. RCW chapter 69.50
          5. Unlawfully manufacturing, delivering or possessing a controlled substance with intent to deliver.
        5. Incidents involving multiple victims or patterns of molestation or rape between child clients placed by CA.
        6. A pattern of high-risk child abuse or neglect referrals.
      3. Safety Incidents involving CA staff, licensed caregivers and contracted providers. Follow DCYF Administrative 7.01 Employee Safety and Security policy.
        Incidents include:
        1. An assault, safety threat or a perceived safety threat to staff, a licensed caregiver or contracted provider by a child client, parent or individual related to the case.
        2. Staff involvement in a traffic accident while on the job, in a personal or state-owned vehicle when any of the following apply:
          1. A child client was a passenger.
          2. The staff or child client was injured and required medical treatment.
          3. The staff was at fault for the accident.
      4. Property Damage or Loss of Client Information
        1. A theft, or incident involving vandalism or damage to state property estimated to be in excess of $750.00.
        2. Incidents resulting in any loss of client information, e.g., loss of case file, printed case documents or on thumb drives, etc. 
  6. Additional AIRS Documentation Requirements
    1. The supervisor of the assigned caseworker will ensure documentation about a client related placement exception includes:
      1. Detailed attempts to locate a more permanent placement for the child.
      2. Reason for placement.
      3. Approving authority.
      4. CA staff providing care of the child if applicable.
    2. The supervisor will include the following information about a safety incident:
      1. Identification of the subject of an AIRS report by job title and office (not by name) when he or she is a CA staff.
      2. The jurisdiction and police report case number in the AIRS "Community" section.
      3. Information about an incident resulting in a serious injury requiring professional medical treatment (if applicable).
    3. The intake or DLR area administrator or designee will document alleged misconduct in a facility or foster home and complete the Facility-Foster Home section.


  • DSHS Administrative policy 18.62 and 18.64 are located on the DSHS Intranet titled Inside DSHS, Click Resources, Other Employee Resources, and Administrative Policies and Rules.
  • AIRS Companion Guide located under Computer Help tab on the CA intranet.
  • Critical Incident Protocol located under the Supervisor tab on the CA intranet.
  • Washington State Patrol Protocol and DSHS Interagency Agreement