Governor Signs Executive Order Creating Michigan Department of Human Services

Contact: Heidi Hansen 517-335-6397

State of Michigan Flag

November 12, 2004

LANSING- Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today signed Executive Order 2004-35 creating the Michigan Department of Human Services. The order renames the Family Independence Agency to more accurately reflect the department’s current mission.

“This executive order renames one of our largest and most progressive departments of state government," said Granholm. "It better reflects this administration’s commitment to reach out to all of those in Michigan who need a helping hand.” 

Department of Human Services director Marianne Udow said the name change has been under consideration for many months and was made only after careful deliberation.

 “Our new name better reflects the comprehensive range of programs we provide,” said Udow. “The name also better represents our mission to reduce poverty, give every child a great start in life, and help our clients achieve their full potential.”

“Changing the name of our agency is the result of our ongoing strategic planning effort,” Udow added. “In this months-long effort, we involved our staff, local communities, our partners outside government and many inside government to evaluate our direction and the way we do business.”

Udow said there will be no direct administrative costs related to changing department products such as new letterhead, business card templates, forms, etc., since these items are managed on-line. The department will phase-in new office signs on an ongoing basis, as funds are available.

The Department of Human Services employs about 10,300 people in more than 100 offices across the state and provides assistance to nearly 1.5 million Michigan citizens every year. The department offers a broad range of assistance to adults and children including:

- A range of cash assistance programs including the federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) grant, the federal Food Stamp Program (Food Assistance Program).

- The federal-state child support program.

-  State child protection, adoption and foster care services.

-  Juvenile justice services for youths referred from courts.

-  Adult protection, community placement and home help services.

-  The Office of Adult and Child Licensing that licenses and regulates child caring institutions, child placing agencies, children's camps adult foster care camps and inspecting juvenile court-operated facilities.

- Other independent units of state government including Children’s Trust Fund, Michigan Domestic Violence Prevention and Treatment Board and Bureau of Community Action and Economic Opportunity.

The department was known as the Department of Social Services from 1965-96, when the state Legislature renamed it the Family Independence Agency. It was known as the State Welfare Department from 1939-65. The order changing the name takes effect on January 30, 2005 unless rejected by both houses of the Michigan Legislature.