HARRISBURG — July 31, 2019 — In response to Governor Wolf’s announcement of Executive Order 2019-05 and directives intended to increase protection of vulnerable populations, Senator Lisa Baker (R-20th) and Senator Judy Schwank (D-11) said they were pleased the administration is building on legislative efforts to address deficiencies in Pennsylvania’s child welfare system. For more than a year the Senators have been working to establish the Interbranch Commission on the Child Welfare System (SB 297) to advance remedies.
“Given the unacceptable number of tragedies experienced in recent years, and the documented shortcomings in the child protection system, there is a need for the sort of initiatives the governor is advancing,” Baker said. “We also need the thorough and extensive inquiry that an independent interbranch commission can provide, so that will continue to be a priority.”
“I’m very encouraged by Gov. Wolf’s initiative in addressing the delivery of critical children’s services,” Schwank said. “We need to continue to pursue our efforts in the legislature. The children in our care must be kept safe, and I am hopeful that at the end of this process we are ensuring their better future.”
“We have heard the troubling stories and profound questions from survivors of abuse and from family and friends of those lost to abuse. These come from our districts and many places across Pennsylvania. We owe them answers in the way of effective and lasting reform of state law and practices,” they said.
Andrew M. Seder