More than 2,600 state child welfare leaders, advocates to gather in Orlando for annual summit

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ORLANDO, Florida — More than 2,600 child welfare workers from around the state are gathering in Orlando this week for the annual Child Protection Summit.

Department of Children and Families Secretary Mike Carroll will kick off the summit Wednesday, speaking about his vision for Florida's vulnerable children.

The three-day summit will give child welfare professionals the opportunity to learn from leading experts from around the country and fellow professionals, to improve their skills in the protection of children and strengthening families.

The agency has come under fire after hundreds of child abuse-related deaths in the past five years. This year, the Legislature passed a sweeping bill aimed at overhauling Florida's child-welfare system.

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