ILNews

GAL/CASA program teams with retired educators

Jennifer Nelson
January 1, 2007
Keywords
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Children in the Indiana court system are about to have many more allies thanks to the Indiana Retired Teachers Association. The organization announced this morning it has chosen the Indiana Supreme Court's GAL/CASA program as its new volunteer project.

Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard, Gov. Mitch Daniels, Indiana Retired Teachers Association Executive Director Ralph Ayers, and others involved in the project were on hand in the Indiana Supreme Court courtroom to explain the project and thank the IRTA for becoming involved.

The rigors of the court process are difficult for children, and they need someone to pay attention to their needs, Chief Justice Shepard said. More than 2,000 volunteers were trained to help 17,000 kids in the state last year, and efforts are underway to increase the level of commitment to Indiana's children in need.

Volunteers undergo 30 hours of training to become a CASA and have ongoing training yearly. Chief Justice Shepard said two-thirds of Indiana counties currently use CASAs for children, and counties with smaller caseloads often appoint guardian ad litems to represent children.

Ayers described the project as a natural fit for Indiana's active and retired teachers, given the years of experience they have working with children from various backgrounds.

"We felt for our organization, we want to promote our members to continue to be involved in committing to help children," Ayers said.

The IRTA has 23,000 members that have volunteered more than 1 million hours in each of the past three years.

Ayers said the focus of the IRTA and the Indiana Supreme Court's GAL/CASA program now is to train people and identify which counties have the strongest need for volunteers.
ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. Thank you, John Smith, for pointing out a needed correction. The article has been revised.

  2. The "National institute for Justice" is an agency for the Dept of Justice. That is not the law firm you are talking about in this article. The "institute for justice" is a public interest law firm. http://ij.org/ thanks for interesting article however

  3. I would like to try to find a lawyer as soon possible I've had my money stolen off of my bank card driver pressed charges and I try to get the information they need it and a Social Security board is just give me a hold up a run around for no reason and now it think it might be too late cuz its been over a year I believe and I can't get the right information they need because they keep giving me the runaroundwhat should I do about that

  4. It is wonderful that Indiana DOC is making some truly admirable and positive changes. People with serious mental illness, intellectual disability or developmental disability will benefit from these changes. It will be much better if people can get some help and resources that promote their health and growth than if they suffer alone. If people experience positive growth or healing of their health issues, they may be less likely to do the things that caused them to come to prison in the first place. This will be of benefit for everyone. I am also so happy that Indiana DOC added correctional personnel and mental health staffing. These are tough issues to work with. There should be adequate staffing in prisons so correctional officers and other staff are able to do the kind of work they really want to do-helping people grow and change-rather than just trying to manage chaos. Correctional officers and other staff deserve this. It would be great to see increased mental health services and services for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities in the community so that fewer people will have to receive help and support in prisons. Community services would like be less expensive, inherently less demeaning and just a whole lot better for everyone.

  5. Can I get this form on line,if not where can I obtain one. I am eligible.

ADVERTISEMENT