The mission of the Department of Human Services is to provide prevention, protection, advocacy and support services to families, children and adults so they can maximize their quality of life, well-being and potential.
La Plata County's Human Services Department is dedicated to serving people. It consists of ten units responsible for administering a variety of programs, many of which are mandated and regulated by state and federal law. These programs offer a wide-range of public assistance to children, elderly, disabled and low-income residents.
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A Quick Guide
Human Services Department Programs
As of July, 2014 certain professionals are mandated to report abuse, neglect, and exploitation of At-risk Elders (any person 70 years or older) to Law Enforcement within 24 hours of observing or becoming aware of mistreatment. Mandatory Reporting expanded in July, 2016 to include At-Risk Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disability (IDD). An at-risk adult with IDD is a person who is eighteen years of age or older who has an onset of an intellectual and developmental disability before the person is 22 years old. An adult with IDD has an I.Q. of 70 or below and/or has significant limitations in the ability to socialize, provide self-care, or communicate. IDD includes autism spectrum disorders, epilepsy, cerebral palsy, developmental delays, Down Syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome, and other disorders. all reports of self-neglect are to be made to APS.
The Colorado Department of Human Services, Adult Protective Services (Colorado APS) unit has made available an on-line training program for mandatory reporters and other members of the community. This training will take approximately 30-40 minutes to complete with access to printing results of the completed course.
You can access the training from the Colorado Department of Human Services Adult Protection https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdhs/report-abuse-older-adult
Child and Family Services:
The purpose of the Child and Family Services program is to provide protection, support and therapeutic services to at-risk children and their families so they can have a safe and permanent home.
Child Support Services:
Assists parents in locating non-custodial parents, establishing paternity, establishing court orders for financial and medical support and support payment collections.
Foster Care and Adoption Services:
The purpose of foster care is to place at-risk children in caring, supportive foster families and provides resources to foster families to promote successful and positive relationships.
The office of La Plata County Senior Services is located at the Durango/La Plata Senior Center, 2424 Main Avenue in Durango. The Durango/La Plata Senior Center offers a variety of services including nutritional meals, a home chore program, recreational and social activities, information, referral and outreach.
The Home Chore Program provides assistance to seniors for minor safety, heavy cleaning, yard work and snow shoveling. Please call (970) 382-6445 for more information and coordination of services.
Nutritional meals are served at the Senior Center at 12:00 noon daily. The suggested donation price is $3.00 for adults age 60 and over. Meal reservations are required. Please call (970) 382-6445 by 10:00 daily for meal reservations.
For additional information about senior services please call the Durango/La Plata Senior Center at (970) 382-6445.
Veterans Services Office:
Provides assistance in accessing veterans benefits and programs, including providing information and referral services to veterans with regard to medical assistance, pension awards, home loans, and other benefits.
For additional information, please call Greg Dotson, Veteran Services Officer at (970) 759-0117 or via email.
For additional information about any of these programs, please call the Human Services Department (970) 382-6150.
To make a complaint about Human Services, please call the La Plata County office at 970-382-6150 and ask to speak with the Office Manager. A complaint can also be filed with the Colorado Department of Human Services by calling 303.866.3275 or by using one of the forms linked here
La Plata County prohibits discrimination against or harassment of any person on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability, veteran’s status, political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender identity, or marital status.