- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 16, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) - Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has approved hiring 100 new child protective service workers to help with a recent spike in new cases.

Deal said in a statement Wednesday that the number of child abuse and neglect reports has increased significantly since the Division of Family and Children Services launched a centralized 24-hour child protective services intake center.

The agency reported a backlog of more than 3,300 child protective services investigations in late June. Deal says he’s looking to reach a goal of a 15 to one caseload to caseworker ratio by 2017.

The move is the latest in a series by state officials to improve child welfare services after several high-profile deaths involving children who had been involved with DFCS. Bobby Cagle was recently named as the agency’s Interim Commissioner.

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