DCFS Spokesman Dave Clarkin says the money will help implement a reorganization plan to protect kids in West Central Illinois and the rest of the state.
“That reorganization plans ensures faster and more thorough child abuse investigations, addresses a shortage of foster families to provide a safe haven for abused and neglected kids, and will enable us to move more quickly to reunite children with their families or find permanent living homes through adoption," says Clarkin.
Clarkin says some of the money will be used to license daycare centers.
“We’ll be able to add some daycare licensing representatives who do those licensing certifications and also investigations, which is allowing Illinois to implement new educational standards for all early childhood providers," says Clarkin.
The $25 million makes up for just half of the $50-million that was cut from the DCFS budget this year. That'll help keep front-line workers on the job but Clarkin points out that their biggest resources aren't even on their payroll. He says everyone should call their hotline when they see or suspect abuse. Clarkin says the cases typically go unreported until it's too late.
That number is 1-800-ABUSE.