DSC 1252RWith continued high-profile failures at the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), State Senator Julie Morrison (D – Deerfield) is continuing her efforts to reform the troubled agency that is tasked with protecting neglected and abused Illinois children.

“When our system fails a child, it is a reflection on all of us,” Morrison said. “Simply blaming DCFS for their failures will not enact the change this agency so desperately needs. We will use what we learn to make sure we have not just policies but practices that ensure DCFS will protect children in Illinois.”

Morrison held a hearing recently that focused on 17-month-old Semaj Crosby, who was found dead in late April in her Joliet-area home. The death of Semaj uncovered a host of failures and questionable practices at DCFS, including reports of an incentive program for case workers who closed the most cases in a month.

Acting Director Beverly Walker, as well as a host of high-level DCFS staff, testified at the hearing regarding the Semaj Crosby investigation and corresponding 22-page report released by the agency after Semaj’s death.

“We need change, and I’m calling for immediate reforms for the frontline workers who interact with and investigate these at-risk children. And I also am urging all my colleagues in the General Assembly to join in the work of reforming this agency,” Morrison said. “We need monumental change. That means we must work together.”

Morrison, who is chairwoman of the Senate Human Services Committee, has been working since first being elected on a number of initiatives that would help turn around the troubled agency. She has worked to decrease temporary placements, address abuse and assaults at residential treatment centers, and increase the role of the court system in keeping children safe.

Category: Latest News

wheeling townhallJoin State Senators Julie Morrison and Terry Link for a Legislative Update Town Hall, taking place on Thursday, August 3 at 7 p.m. at the Indian Trails Public Library.

Questions?
Please contact Senator Morrison's office in Deerfield at (847) 945-5200. 

Click on the flyer for more information

Category: Latest News

DCFS Event CropState Senator Julie Morrison (D – Deerfield) joined the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and a host of child welfare advocates recently in announcing the launch of the Illinois Early Childhood Court Team, known as Safe Babies Court.

The new initiative will bring together the court system, DCFS and a host of child welfare organizations, including the Ounce of Prevention and the Erikson Institute, to change outcomes among abused and neglected infants and toddlers.

“Safe Babies Court will transform the way we respond to the abuse of some of our most vulnerable young children,” Morrison said. “Studies have shown the effectiveness of programs that integrate data-driven strategies to fully address and treat exposure to traumatic experiences.”

The Safe Babies Court model was first utilized in South Florida and later adopted by Zero to Three, a national organization devoted to advancing the healthy development of babies and young children.

Read more about Safe Babies Court

Category: Latest News

SenateFloorSPRINGFIELD - State Senator Julie Morrison (D - Deerfield) released the following statement after the Illinois Senate took action on three budget bills yesterday:

"Yesterday, the Senate voted on both a budget and an income tax increase. I voted no on the income tax increase.  

"I have heard from SO many residents telling me that they opposed this increase, especially without any property tax relief. I have voted consistently to support a property tax freeze and to consolidate local governments, both which would provide some relief to our high property taxes. Without that, I didn't believe that it was right to ask the same people to pay more income tax.

"I did vote yes on the budget bills (Senate Bills 6 and 42).  While not perfect, the budget was incredibly necessary to provide some stability for the state.  I have served on the Senate Appropriations Committee and find this budget, which cut $3 billion in state spending, one we can work with. While I do believe there is room for some additional cuts, this was a decent start.

"Please don’t hesitate to contact my District Office in Deerfield at (847) 945-5200 or my Springfield Office at (217) 782-3650 if you have any additional questions."

Category: Latest News

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