Rock County considers body cameras for child protective service - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Rock County considers body cameras for child protective service workers

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ROCK COUNTY (WREX) - You've heard of police body cameras, but what about social worker body cameras? That's what one county in Wisconsin wants to have. 

A body camera is about the size of a small cell phone. Stephenson County's corrections officers use them regularly. Other law enforcement agencies around the area and the country are considering something similar. Now, Rock County Supervisor Gregory Addie wants them for CPS. 

"It makes it so if that case worker, if they go on to that property it makes them accountable to state statue just like the police officer," Addie says. 

The resolution states that the Rock County Sheriff's Department has evaluated body cameras for its deputies, and the cameras would cost about $1,000 each. That doesn't include the cost of storage servers and software licenses. There is no plan included on how those cameras would be paid for. If every worker was given one, it could cost nearly $70,000. 

Addie believes it would eliminate the need for a second case worker to be in a home to act as an eye witness. He also feels this is not an invasion of privacy but protection for the families social workers are visiting. 

"What this does is give them representation, documented on film so for a mother this is a benefit that everything that is happening to them is documented for their own protection," Addie says. 

13 News reached out to CPS for comment and has not heard back. 

The proposal is currently before the Human Service Committee. They have 60 days to either approve it or reject it. If it does pass, it would go to the full county board for a vote.

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