CHICAGO – To address longstanding racial disparities facing children and families under the care of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and increase the legislature’s oversight of the department, state Rep. Justin Slaughter, D-Chicago, recently supported legislation that requires DCFS to submit an annual report on the state of it to the legislature.
“Far too many of our kids have fallen through the cracks due to DCFS’ poor recordkeeping and monitoring,” said Slaughter. “As a father, it makes my blood boil to read headlines about children under DCFS care who have been abused, assaulted or worse.”
The Slaughter supported House Bill 2914 was recently signed into law by Gov. J.B. Pritzker. The law mandates DCFS to present an annual report on the racial disparities children and families involved with the agency to the General Assembly. The report will include information on the educational, economic, criminal justice and health outcomes of the families under DCFS’ care. These annual reports will present these metrics by race to help the agency and the General Assembly address the effects of systemic racism and discrimination. DCFS is obliged to present its first report in December 2022.
“Protecting our children should be the number one priority of DCFS, and this legislation will help them do just that,” said Slaughter. “Black and Brown youth matter. Black and Brown families matter, and it’s long past time that we demand that our government agencies that serve us realize this too.”