Child and Family Ombudsman

Child and Family Ombudsman Position Summary:

Job Overview:
This position serves as the Child and Family Ombudsman for the Montana Department of Justice (DOJ). The position is responsible for evaluating Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) and other state agency operations, policies, and practices to identify opportunities to better protect the interests and rights of Montana’s children and families and to identify persistent, continuing or systemic concerns and issues that may merit attention, prevention, and resolution; investigating and addressing complaints of maladministration or violations of rights and resolving them through recommendations, mediation, administrative or legal action; and administering a statewide public education and information program about services available through the Office and to pursue and promote the legal, civil, and special protections of children.

A.   Advocacy
Evaluate Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) and other state agency operations, policies, and practices identify opportunities to better protect the interests and rights of Montana’s children and families and to identify persistent, continuing or systemic concerns and issues that may merit attention, prevention, and resolution.

B.   Investigation
Investigate and address complaints of maladministration or violations of rights to resolve them through recommendations, mediation, or administrative or legal action.

C. Outreach & Education
Develop and administer a statewide public education and information program to inform interested parties of the services available through the Office of the Child and Family Ombudsman and to promote and pursue the legal, civil, and special protections of children

Required knowledge, skills, and abilities:
The position requires education and experience equivalent to a bachelor’s degree in Human Services, Social Services, Criminal Justice, Psychology or a closely related field with a masters degree preferred and five (5) years progressively responsible experience in child protective services and/or a related field in child welfare.

The 2013 Montana Legislature passed House Bill 76 to create a Child and Family Ombudsman position in the Montana Department of Justice. The legislation directs Attorney General Fox to appoint the position.
This position serves as the Child and Family Ombudsman for the Montana Department of Justice (DOJ). The position is responsible for evaluating Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) and other state agency operations, policies, and practices to identify opportunities to better protect the interests and rights of Montana’s children and families.
Montana residents interested in submitting their names for consideration for the Child and Family Ombudsman appointment are requested to provide the following information to the Attorney General’s office by 5:00 on Friday November 15, 2013. Information will be accepted by e-mail to JulieJames@mt.gov or by mail to:

Ombudsman Position
Attn: Julie James
PO Box 201401
Helena, MT 59620-1401

  1. A Letter of Interest to Attorney General Fox limited to 3 pages. The letter should include a description of how the applicant’s education, skills and experience meet the Ombudsman position summary responsibilities of Advocacy, Investigation and Outreach & Education. The position summary including responsibilities is posted on the DOJ Website  https://doj.mt.gov/
  2. A current Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  3. Two professional references

The Child and Family Ombudsman must be a Montana resident, is subject to a comprehensive background check and can be located anywhere in Montana. Compensation for the Ombudsman will include standard state employee benefits and a salary in the range of $45,000.00 to $68,000.00 depending upon education and experience. This is a temporary appointment as House Bill 76 terminates the funding on June 30, 2015.

For more information, contact Dana Toole, Director of the DOJ Children’s Justice Center.