COLUMBIA, SC (AP) - The director of the Department of Social Services indicates it will take a lot more money to fix the agency's woes.
Director Susan Alford outlined to senators Monday an agency with overworked employees who still operate mostly with pen and paper in offices where they don't feel safe.
Alford took the helm of the troubled agency in February. The previous director resigned last year following hearings that focused on high caseloads and children's deaths.
The Legislature provided money in this year's budget to hire about 180 additional child welfare employees.
Alford says it will be six more months before employees see significant caseload relief, as hiring and training will take time.
She also pointed to a 41 percent increase in cases since January among 20 counties that regionalized call centers.