IL for www.theindianalawyer.comA consultant hired by the state says Indiana has more than double the number of children in out-of-home care compared to the national average.The consultant, Child Welfare Policy, and Practice Group, was hired by Gov. Eric Holcomb to review the Department of Child Services after the resignation of former agency head Mary Beth Bonaventura. In her resignation letter in December, she accused Holcomb’s administration of service cuts that “all but ensure children will die.”The contract Holcomb’s office signed with Child Welfare Policy and Practice Group runs from Jan. 2-June 21, 2018. Cost of the work will be capped at $146,630.In a six-page initial progress report, the consultant sketched its plan for reviewing DCS. The work will include interviewing stakeholders such as children and families, foster parents, judges, law enforcement and caseworkers; examining outcomes and internal management data to assess how children are being served; and reviewing policies and case files.Also, the consultant will shadow family case managers and supervisors in Allen, Clark, Lake, Marion, and Vanderburgh counties.The consultant has begun interviewing personnel at DCS, including the incoming director, Terry Stigdon. Thus far the consultant has little to report, although officials said Thursday they found the state needs a better system for tracking cases of child abuse and neglect.The number of children placed in foster care because their drug-addict parents can’t care for them has surged across the country. But the problem is particularly acute in a handful of states including Indiana.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail
Bakery chain Greggs this week reported a 5.6% increase in its like-for-like sales over the Christmas period, the four weeks to 5 January.In a trading update it also revealed that like-for-like sales increased 5.8% in the 28 weeks to 29 December, giving overall growth in like-for-like sales for the year of 5.3%.Group managing director Sir Michael Darrington commented: “Despite the continuation of cost pressures on a number of our key ingredients, we look forward to reporting on a year of satisfactory progress when we make the preliminary announcement of our 2007 results.”Greggs, Britain’s biggest bakery retailer with 1,368 outlets, is due to report its 2007 results on 11 March.
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