by Sharon Hofer, Esq., Senior Staff Attorney
It has been eight long months since we began our “new normal.’ Many of us are still working remotely, including our MCAP Staff. We have been very busy because, sadly, this new normal still includes child abuse. We have received many questions regarding which cases are “live” and which are being held via the Zoom platform.
Currently the Juvenile Court is holding all Dependency cases via Zoom, and this will continue at least through December. Dependency matters are being scheduled four days a week in front of Judge Ferman, a floating Judge, and Juvenile Court Hearing Officer Gibbons. This schedule has been well-received by our MCAPs – everyone really appreciates having a set time for their hearing. Additionally, our Orphans’ Court continues to hold all Termination of Parental Rights proceedings via Zoom as well. This will also continue through December.
Protection from Abuse (PFA) cases are being held “live” at the Court House. Everyone must submit to a temperature check in order to be admitted into the Court House. Everyone must also wear a mask while in the Court House. Each PFA has a scheduled time and the participants are not allowed into the court room until that time. This has been working very well and is keeping contact to a minimum.
If you have any questions about a case you have taken, please feel free to reach out to me (shofer@MCAPkids.org), Mary (marypugh@MCAPkids.org) or Eileen (firstname.lastname@example.org). We can’t thank our MCAP volunteers enough! We truly appreciate each and every one of you as we manage these challenging times together.