• DSS: 5 social workers fired, manager demoted after child abuse case


    UNION COUNTY, N.C. - There's more fallout Monday from a Union County child abuse case.
    The Department of Social Services has been firing some of its workers after an internal investigation which followed the arrest of one of its own.
    The Union County Board of Commissioners is discussing a response plan to improve the county's children's welfare program.
    A consultant was brought in to help with the internal investigation earlier this year.
    So far, five Social Service workers have been fired and a top manager demoted after last year's arrest of one of its supervisors.
    One of those employees fired is social worker Charles Durrah. The DSS director said he continuously put clients at risk.
    Durrah investigated claims of abuse for the agency. He was hired in December 2011 and let go last month. Records show he was making just more than $44,000 a year.                       
    Jennifer Rowland was also fired in May for unacceptable personal conduct.
    She worked as a part-time income maintenance caseworker.
    The county did not explain the actions that led to her firing.
    Rowland was hired in March. She was making $15.75 an hour.
    Kevin Williams was demoted from social work program manager to social worker in May.
    As program manager, Williams oversaw treatment. He also investigated supervisors and other employees in the child protective services unit.
    Williams worked on and off at the agency since 1988.
    He was making $48,000 a year. His salary dropped $13,000 after being demoted.         
    In November, deputies charged former DSS supervisor Wanda Sue Larson and her partner Dorian Harper.
    Deputies said they found an 11-year-old boy in her care, handcuffed to the porch with a dead chicken hanging around his neck.
    Since then, the DSS has been making major changes.

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    DSS: 5 social workers fired, manager demoted after child abuse case