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Blindsided: American families face increasing odds against international adoption

By Katie Stancombe TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS–After 11 months of paperwork and preparation, Natalie Young was ready to jumpstart her potential son’s adoption from Guatemala. All she needed was approval from his birth country. One day shy of getting the green light to move forward, Young and her family were blindsided. “I got the email Tuesday morning […]

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Federal judge strikes down Indiana’s latest abortion law

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS—A federal judge Thursday issued an injunction barring Indiana from enforcing a law requiring doctors to report abortion complications to the state beginning July 1. U.S. District Judge Richard Young ruled that the Indiana law, enacted in the 2018 legislative session, was too vague.  Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky sued in […]

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Lawmaker proposes using federal money to help DCS

By Brynna Sentel TheStateHouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS—A state lawmaker is recommending that Indiana tap into a federal child care fund to help more than 500 foster care parents who are on a waiting list to receive assistance. The Child Care and Development Fund, a federal-state partnership to provide low-income families with child care help, has an extra […]

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Governor taps surplus to improve DCS

By Janet Williams and Brynna Sentel TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS—Gov. Eric Holcomb is tapping the state’s surplus to immediately implement some of the changes to the state’s Department of Child Services recommended by an outside assessment of the agency. The $25 million will go toward increasing the pay of employees of the troubled state agency as well […]

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Miss Heart of the Midwest shares personal story of child abuse

By Quinn Fitzgerald TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS–A childhood of sexual, physical and emotional abuse is the reason Miss Heart of the Midwest fights to end the pain other children suffer. Jessica Hopper spent her childhood either at her grandmother’s home or her parents’ home. For nine years, her grandmother’s boyfriend sexually abused Hopper. When she became aware […]

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Hoosiers commemorate 50th anniversary of King assassination, Kennedy speech

By Quinn Fitzgerald TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS—For U.S. Rep. John Lewis, a civil rights pioneer, the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Indianapolis holds 50-year-old memories that have made it difficult for him to return to. Lewis was one of many at the park when Robert F. Kennedy shared the news that Dr. Martin Luther King […]

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Staffing issues, over-centralization revealed in latest DCS report

By Quinn Fitzgerald TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS ­– The latest report on the Department of Child Services shows top-heavy decision-making, trouble with keeping qualified and experienced workers, and a shortage of specialized services to deal with substance abuse or mental health issues. Thursday, DCS shared preliminary findings of the Child Welfare Policy and Practice Group, which has […]

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Study committee to examine Department of Child Services

By Quinn Fitzgerald TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS ­– A Senate committee on Monday passed a resolution to have a study committee investigate the state’s Department of Child Services this summer. Senate Resolution 14, authored by Sen. Eddie Melton, D-Merrillville, will bring legislators from both sides of the aisle together to study recent issues that led the former […]

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Senator proposes study committee to examine Department of Child Services issues

By Abrahm Hurt TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS — Sen. Eddie Melton, D-Merrillville, is urging his Senate colleagues to create a study committee to look into recent allegations against the Department of Child Services. Senate Resolution 14, which was heard in the Family and Children Services Committee Monday, calls for a two-year committee to study issues related to […]

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High percentage of Hoosier children end up in state care

By Abrahm Hurt TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS—Children in Indiana end up in out-of-home care at more than twice the rate of children in other states, an independent agency investigating conditions in the state’s Department of Child Services found. That and an antiquated data system are two of the issues called out by the Child Welfare Policy and […]

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