About DCS


DCS Mission, Vision, and Values

Mission:  The Indiana Department of Child Services engages with families and collaborates with state, local and community partners to protect children from abuse and neglect and to provide child support services.

Vision: Indiana children will live in safe, healthy and supportive families and communities.

We believe:
• Every child has the right to be free from abuse and neglect
• Every child has the right to appropriate care and a permanent home
• The best place for children to grow up is with their own families
• Children and older youth have the right to permanent and lifelong connections
• Parents have the primary responsibility for the care and safety of their children
• In personal accountability for outcomes, including one’s own growth and development
• Every person has value, worth and dignity


The Department of Child Services was established in January 2005 by an executive order of Governor Mitch Daniels. The Department was charged with providing more direct attention and oversight of two critical areas: protection of children and child support enforcement. James W. Payne, a juvenile court judge in Marion County for 25 years, was named the Agency's first Director.

DCS protects children who are victims of abuse or neglect and strengthens families through services that focus on family support and preservation. The Department also administers child support, child protection, adoption and foster care throughout the state of Indiana. The DCS Central Office is located in the Indiana Government Center South at 302 West Washington Street, Room E306.