Early Retirement

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About 100 state employees who protect abused children will take the early retirement program offered by the state.

This marks the first time that the Family Independence Agency (FIA) has released the numbers. The employees that are leaving amounts to about 12 percent of the 800 so called child protective services workers.

FIA director Doug Howard says he intends to replace every one of the CPS employees but he is not sure how long that will take. In the interim he says he can not promise that some children may be abused again, but he does promise to use overtime and whatever else it takes to protect the children of abused families.

State Senate Mike Goscha, who chairs the FIA budget, says he is concerned about the brain drain saying the early out may have been good for the state budget but it could be bad for Michigan children.

The list of 175,000 abusive parents is confidential and not available to the general public. It is used by state officials and law enforcement officials to keep track of abused children and the adults who harm them.