Fla officials revamp child abuse hotline

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Child welfare officials have overhauled the state abuse hotline.

The Department of Children and Families hotline receives more than 400,000 calls a year, yet staff have relied on the outdated procedures and antiquated technology for the past 30 years. Secretary David Wilkins says operators were focusing more on speed than accuracy.

A panel investigating problems leading up to Nubia Barahona's death made several recommendations this week to overhaul the system. The new call center launched last month.

New technology and procedures will help operators provide investigators with more updated information about alleged abuse and a family's background before a home visit.

Wilkins says the new system will allow DCF to respond to cases faster and with significantly more accuracy.

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