"Colorado's child welfare system is out of compliance with federal regulations on child safety and well-being, according to a review released Friday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The review found Colorado did not meet standards for abuse in home care and placement stability. The state is also not in compliance with standards measuring child safety and well being.

Gov. Bill Ritter created a task force following a state investigation into the deaths of 13 children whose families had previous contact with social workers. State officials said there is no way to know if those were among the 65 cases reviewed by the federal government for its report, but they said the report was a wake-up call for reform.

"The results of the review are pretty sobering," said Liz McDonough, spokeswoman for the state Department of Human Services.

The review also noted significant themes in Colorado's overall performance: lack of consistency, lack of service accessibility, and lack of accountability.

Karen L. Beye, executive director of the Colorado Department of Human Services, said the review demonstrates that the state needs to greatly improve its system of protecting vulnerable children... Read More