Interim Leader of Department of Children and Families Esther Jacobo Tells Staff to Refocus in Wake of Deaths

She urged staffers to look at every case in careful detail, realizing each one could be the next tragedy.

Wednesday, Jul 24, 2013  |  Updated 12:35 PM EDT
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Florida's new interim child welfare leader asked staff to refocus and regroup in the wake of a handful of recent deaths of children involved with the agency.

Department of Children and Families Interim Secretary Esther Jacobo told staff in Tallahassee on Tuesday the deaths should "inspire all of us in child welfare to question just how such a terrible thing should happen."

She urged staffers to look at every case in careful detail, realizing each one could be the next tragedy.

She encouraged employees to voice their concerns about cases and to rise above the bureaucratic mentality of not doing something because it doesn't fall under their job title.

Jacobo was selected as interim chief after Secretary David Wilkins abruptly resigned last week.

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