Safety Organized Practice (SOP) Toolkit


Child's drawing of a family outside the home on a partially cloudy day.

Safety Organized Practice (SOP) is a collaborative, culturally respectful, trauma-informed and evidence-informed best practice approach that utilizes skillful engagement, meaningful partnerships with families and their networks, and development of plans that build on a family's strengths and foster behavior change within a family system to ensure child safety, permanency and well-being. SOP is both a framework for practice and a set of tools and strategies that help child welfare staff achieve the Integrated Core Practice Model (ICPM)/California Child Welfare Core Practice Model (CPM) behaviors of engagement, assessment, teaming, transition, and service planning and delivery with a family and their network.

SOP provides on-the-ground practice tools intended to support achievement of federal child welfare outcome measures, including improved timely permanency and placement stability and reduced recurrence of maltreatment and re-entry to foster care.

Goals of the Toolkit

The goal of this statewide SOP toolkit is to support consistency and fidelity of Safety Organized Practice across California, and to ensure social workers, supervisors and leaders in all counties have access to the same resources to support the practice.

Since 2008, SOP has evolved in California as a grassroots effort, with the goal of building a skills-based approach to child welfare practice that emphasizes meaningful involvement of families and their networks of support to ensure child safety, permanency and well-being. The strength of this grassroots approach is that many resources have been developed at local and regional levels to support implementation and use of SOP.

This toolkit aims to ensure that all counties have access to the same rich array of resources to support the practice, implementation and evaluation of SOP. The tools in this toolkit were created, edited and/or compiled by the contributing members of the SOP Backbone Committee.

About the SOP Backbone Committee

The SOP Backbone Committee is a collaborative workgroup that takes a statewide collective impact approach to implementation and fidelity of SOP in California. The Committee is made up of members from the California Department of Social Services (CDSS), the Regional Training Academies (RTAs; Northern, Bay Area, Central, and Southern), CalSWEC, Casey Family Programs and county representatives from each region, including Butte, Contra Costa, Fresno, Los Angeles, Placer, Sacramento, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Santa Cruz and Ventura counties. The Northern Academy at UC Davis Human Services has primary responsibility for SOP Backbone Committee coordination. For SOP regional contact information, see the SOP Regional Contacts page.

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