Wood County Children's Services director says levy renewal crucial

Wood County Children's Services director says levy renewal crucial

WOOD COUNTY, OH (WTOL) - The statistics of the opiate epidemic are a sobering reminder of how many the crisis affect.

The Wood County Children's Services says they are on track to see a record number of cases of children being victims to the epidemic. And with a levy renewal up for a vote, the organization could lose more than 30 percent of their staff.

"We would not be able to respond as quickly as we currently respond, and some of the issues we deal with like shaken baby are life or death issues," said director Dave Wigent.

Last year, Wigents says the center received more than 200 cases, and that number may rise.

"At our current rate this year we anticipate doing approximately 1,000 investigations this year which would be another record for us," Wigent said. "And that makes the levy support even more critical."

Wigent says about a quarter of their case load is a result of the opioid epidemic, but there is also a jump in other cases.

"Some of the abuse cases are more severe than it used to be, and we've seen a slight jump in sexual assaults," Wigent explained.

There has been a 1.3 mil levy for the Wood County Children's Services for 30 years, and because Ohio ranks last in the country in funding for children's services, the funding is crucial.

The renewal will go to voters in November.

Follow WTOL:  

Download our app here

Copyright 2017 WTOL. All rights reserved.