INDIANAPOLIS – Today, the Indiana Senate Committee on Family and Children Services unanimously approved Senate Resolution (SR) 14, calling for a legislative committee to review issues within the Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS). State Senator Eddie Melton (D-Gary), the author of SR 14, presented the resolution and stressed the need for the study committee.
“We need to ensure that we’re doing the best for our most vulnerable children,” Sen. Melton said. “We need to prioritize our children’s safety, and not put it on the back burner.”
Sen. Melton’s resolution comes amidst last year’s sudden resignation of DCS director Mary Beth Bonaventura, who justified her resignation by saying she could not in good conscience stand by and watch Hoosier children be “systematically placed at risk, without the ability to help them.” Governor Holcomb has hired a third party to administer a study of how DCS can be improved, but legislative leaders have not moved forward on this issue, instead yielding to the direction taken by the executive branch.
“The Indiana General Assembly is an equal branch of government, and therefore the legislature should also be investigating ways to properly protect our children and appropriate funds to support the agency and the providers,” Senator Melton said.
Senate Resolution 14 now moves to the Senate floor where the entire body will consider its passage