Kelly Knutson

Kelly Knutson

Minnesota Department of Human Services

Kelly Knutson is the Continuous Quality Improvement Supervisor in the Child Safety and Permanency Division at DHS.  The Continuous Quality Improvement unit is responsible for the ongoing review of the locally-administered child welfare agencies across the state, including the review of fatalities and near-fatalities. Before becoming supervisor of the Continuous Quality Improvement Unit, Kelly was a trainer of new child protection workers for several years. Kelly has a master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Minnesota, Duluth, and worked as a child welfare worker in Wisconsin prior to coming to the Department of Human Services. While in Wisconsin Kelly was involved in the initial rollout of the Trauma Project in Wisconsin that was implemented to develop and support a trauma-informed child welfare system in Wisconsin.

In response to Governor Dayton’s Task Force on the Protection of Children and legislation passed in 2015, Kelly worked with a team from Tennessee to bring a new model that is trauma informed and based in safety science for reviewing critical incidents to Minnesota. That work began early in 2017 and implementation of this model for use with reviews of fatalities and near-fatalities has begun; the Child Safety and Permanency Division continues to explore how to grow the model, including key components related to the creation of a safety culture, and advance the work into all areas of Minnesota’s child welfare system.

Collaborative Safety and Multi-Disciplinary Teams

Room 204

Download session presentation Collaborative Safety is based in Human Factors and Systems Safety (Safety Science) used by other Safety Critical Systems such as Aviation, Healthcare, and Nuclear Power. Collaborative Safety moves away from blame and toward a system of accountability that focuses on identifying underlying systemic issues to improve Human Services systems. Child welfare is […]

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