STATEHOUSE – State Rep. Kevin Mahan (R-Hartford City) authored House Bill (HB) 1142, which addresses staffing needs for the Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS). The legislation passed out of the Committee on Family, Children and Human Affairs with a 12-0 vote today.
HB 1142 requires DCS to hire additional employees by Jan. 1, 2014. This will include 50 intake specialists, 10 intake specialist supervisors, 80 family case managers and 16 family case manager supervisors.
“Hiring additional DCS staff will help reduce the employee turnover we have seen at the centralized call center,” said Rep. Mahan. “It will also lessen the amount of time callers are on hold to report an issue.”
HB 1142 also requires DCS to assign a report of child abuse or neglect, received by the centralized call center, to the local office in the county where the child is located.
“Returning some of the local control back to the counties is being addressed in this piece of legislation,” said Rep. Mahan. “This will allow the intake specialists to funnel calls from the centralized call center to the local DCS offices.”
HB 1142 also states that a local DCS office must investigate a report of child abuse or neglect from certain professionals including medical personnel, school personnel, social workers, law enforcement personnel and judiciary personnel.
The bill will now move to the House Ways and Means Committee for further discussion and debate.
To find the most up-to-date bill status, visit www.in.gov/legislative.