DFCS Online Policies & Procedures

  DFCS Online Policies & Procedures

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Handbook 10: Contacts and Visitation
10-5.1 Arranging Secure Visitation
Contacts and Visitation
10-5.1  Arranging Secure Visitation
Reference Points
Procedures for Arranging Secure Visitation
Other References

Reference Points
Effective Date: 11/1/08
Last Updated: 11/5/13
 Legal Basis:
Popup Window Legal Basis Text
 Non CWS/CMS Forms:
MS Word Forms Text
 CWS/CMS Forms:
PDF Social Worker I Referral Form (SCZ20)


It is the policy of the Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) that parents and children have a safe and secure setting for visitation.  When a parent poses a safety or security risk, arrangements for a secure visit may be necessary to facilitate visitation. 

Safety or security concerns may include risks such as the possibility of a parent carrying a weapon, absconding with the child, or otherwise behaving in a volatile or dangerous manner.  Secure visits may be considered if a parent has threatened another visitation participant or social worker.

Secure visits are held at a DFCS office where a safety officer or Deputy Sheriff is present.  The visits may be supervised by either the case carrying social worker or social worker I.  Other security visitation venues may be arranged after a staffing and administrative approval. 

A court order is required if the visit requires the presence of the Deputy Sheriff.


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Procedures for Arranging Secure Visitation  




Determine the need for secure visitation.


Confer about visitation and safety concerns with the social work supervisor and Deputy Sheriff.

Primary Social Worker

Complete the Social Worker I Referral Form (SCZ20)

Prepare and submit directly to the social work supervisor via hard copy and email (CC SSPM)

Provide the following information about the proposed secure visitation:

  • Name(s) of child(ren)
  • Name(s) of parent(s)
  • Brief background of risk/safety factors necessitating secure visitation.
  • Existing restraining orders and warrants
  • Name and phone number of Social Worker who will be supervising the visits
  • Preferred weekday(s) start time and duration for visits
  • Frequency of visits

Primary Social Worker

Notify the Program Manager, Deputy Sheriff, and Social Worker I Supervisor of the need for the secure visitation


At least seven (7) days prior to the start of the requested visitation date:

  • Provide the Social Worker I referral form to the Social Worker I Supervisor to begin to arrange coverage.
  • Provide to the Deputy Sheriff all necessary identifying and prescriptive information such as:
    • Name of the child
    • Name of the visitor
    • Date and time restrictions
    • The nature of the security issue

Primary Social Worker and Social Work Supervisor

Coordinate with the Sheriff’s Deputy to provide coverage for the visits.

Call the Deputy Sheriff located at 373 W. Julian St. to notify him of the request for secure visits.

Primary Social Worker

If the visit is to be supervised by a SWI, coordinate with the SWI and Deputy Sheriff.

Ensure that the SWI and the Deputy have a coordinated plan in place for the facilitation of the visit. 

Primary Social Worker

Complete quarterly assessments of the visitation arrangements

See OPP Chapter 10-5: Visitation Protocol

Primary Social Worker

Review secure visitation.

Assess the need for continuation of secure visitation:

  • After the first visit
  • Once a week as the visitation continues

SSPM, Social Work Supervisor, Social Worker, Deputy Sheriff

Terminate secure visitation when appropriate.


Notify the:

  • Sheriff's Deputy or Security Officer
  • SSPM
  • Social Work Supervisor
  • Social Worker I Supervisor and
  • Social Worker I if supervising the visits

that secure visitation arrangements are no longer needed.


Primary Social Worker



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Other References  



OPP Chapter 10-5: Visitation Protocol

OPP Chapter 20-1: Security and Incident Reporting

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Dept of Family & Children's Services Santa Clara County SSA