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Department of Social Services

Children Services

Foster Care/Permanency Planning Service for Children

This service provides counseling and treatment services for children, birth families, or foster families to remedy personal problems, behavior, or home conditions that lead to the need for out-of-home care for children.

Adoption & Foster Care Services

What is Foster Care?
Foster care is a temporary living arrangement for abused, neglected and dependent children who need a safe place to live when their parents or caretakers cannot take care of them.

What Foster Parents do…

  • Provide basic necessities
  • Encourage positive relationships
  • Protect the child
  • Discipline in a positive way
  • Help the child to grow
  • Work as part of a team
  • Help support and prepare the child for their future

Children available for Foster Care and Adoption are children separated from their parents because of:

  • Physical or sexual abuse
  • Neglect or abandonment
  • Physical or mental illness of a parent
  • Death of parents
  • Child’s emotional or behavioral problems
  • Children from all backgrounds
  • Children with specific needs

General requirements for Foster Parenting and/or Adoption in Pasquotank County:

  • Be a resident of Pasquotank County
  • Attend a 30-hour training course
  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Have a stable income
  • Be in good physical and mental health
  • Have the ability to provide good physical, emotional and spiritual care
  • Have a stable family relationship
  • Have enough room for a child
  • Have a telephone
  • Be fingerprinted and have a criminal records check completed
  • Have a home study completed

Who can adopt or become a Foster Parent:

  • People who are single, married, divorced or widowed
  • People who have children and people who don’t
  • People with high and low incomes
  • People who did or did not finish school
  • People who own their home or rent

Protective Services for Children

This service provides for the investigation of: reports of neglect, abuse or dependency of children under the age 18; evaluation of the degree of damage or risk to the child; cooperation with law enforcement agencies to obtain suitable care and services for children in or out of their own homes; and initiation of court action where necessary. Case management services aimed at alleviating problems causing neglect, abuse, or dependency are also included.

To make a Child Protective Services referral, call (252) 338-2126. When the DSS offices are closed, a recording will provide instructions on how to make a report.


Child Care Services

Assistance with the cost of child care is available to parents who are working or going to school, and fall within the income guidelines.

For more information, visit the Albemarle Smart Start Partnership website at: http://www.wecare4kids.org/.

Work First Employment Services

Provides assessment, counseling, and supportive services that enable Work First Family Assistance parents/caretakers to participate in educational and training activities leading to self-sufficiency. Supportive services may include assistance with day care and transportation, and also emergency assistance funds that can be utilized for emergency situations such as cut offs and evictions.

Visit http://www.dhhs.state.nc.us/dss/workfirst/index.htm for more information.

Work Permits
Click here to download the Youth Employment Certificate form.

Proof of Age and Required Age for Legal Employment:
Generally, youths must be at least 14 years of age to be employed in non-farm work. Limited exceptions exist. Proof of age includes a birth certificate, driver's license or learner's permit, school, insurance or Bible records, or other documents approved by the Department of Social Services and/or the N. C. Department of Labor.

Prohibited Hazardous and Detrimental Occupations

State and/or federal regulations prohibit the employment of youths under 18 in these occupations:

  • Manufacturing and storing explosives
  • Motor-vehicle driving and outside helper (Limited exemption for driving under state law only)
  • Logging and sawmilling
  • Power-driven woodworking machines
  • Exposure to radioactive substances
  • Power-driven hoisting apparatus
  • Power-driven metal forming, punching and shearing machines
  • Welding
  • Any process where quartz or any form of silicon dioxide or asbestos silicate is present in powdered form
  • Any work involving exposure to lead or any of its compounds in any form
  • Mining
  • Slaughtering or meat-packing, processing or rendering
  • Power-driven bakery machines
  • Power-driven paper products machines
  • Manufacturing brick and tile
  • Power-driven circular saws, band saws, and guillotine shears
  • Wrecking, demolition and shipbreaking operations
  • Roofing operations
  • Excavation operations
  • Any work involving exposure to benzol or any benzol compound which is volatile or can penetrate the skin
  • Spray painting
  • Handling of unsterilized hides or animal or human hair

*Limited exceptions exist for 16 and 17 year old apprentices and student learners in these occupations. Contact N. C. Wage and Hour Office for details.

Work Restrictions at Businesses with an ABC On-premises License:

No youth under 16 years of age may be employed in any job on the premises of an establishment holding an ABC license for the on-premises consumption of alcoholic beverages. A limited exception exists for children of the sole owner of the establishment. Youth ages 16 and 17 years old may be employed at such establishments so long as they do not prepare, serve, dispense, or sell any alcoholic beverage.

Hours/Time Restrictions for 14 and 15-year-olds:

Youths 14 and 15 years old may not be employed:

  1. during school hours (except as provided for in Work Experience and Career Exploration Programs);
  2. before 7 a.m. or after 7 p.m. except 9 p.m. during the summer when school is not in session;
  3. more than 3 hours per day on school days;
  4. more than 18 hours per week during the school week;
  5. more than 8 hours per day on non-school days;
  6. more than 40 hours per week during non-school weeks.

NOTE: No youth under 16 years of age shall be employed for more than five consecutive hours without an interval of at least 30 minutes for rest. No period of less than 30 minutes shall be deemed to interrupt a continuous period of work. This restriction applies to employers who are only subject to state youth employment laws and not to employers who are subject to federal child labor laws.

Hours/Time Restrictions for 16 and 17-year-olds:

During the regular school term, no youth under 18 years of age who is enrolled in grade 12 or lower may be employed between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. when there is school for the youth the next day. This restriction does not apply to youths 16 and 17 if the employer receives written approval for the youth to work beyond the stated hours from the youth's parent or guardian and from the youth's principal or the principal's designee, nor does it apply to any youth who has dropped out of school and who is only enrolled in a GED program or a community or technical college.

Contact Information

Melissa Stokely, Director
Administrative Officer (Personnel and Fiscal)-Sheri Raynor
Income Maintenance Program Administrator(all economic services)-Janet Sawyer
Social Work Program Administrator (including child care)-Kathy Ford

Elizabeth City, NC 27909
Phone: 252-338-2126
E-mail: melissa.stokley@pcdss.com

The Department of Social Services is located at 709 Roanoke Ave. Click Here for a Map.

Office Hours

Monday – Friday
8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.


Economic Independence
Medical Assistance
Adult Services
Children Services

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