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State commission studying services for children sets first meeting

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A commission created last year by the Legislature to better coordinate services for children will hold its first meeting Aug. 21.

The Commission on Improving the Status of Children chaired by Indiana Supreme Court Justice Loretta Rush will meet from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Conference Room C, Indiana Government Center South, 402 W. Washington St., Indianapolis.

Rush, formerly a juvenile court judge in Tippecanoe County, has been a longtime advocate for improving service for children.

Senate Enrolled Act 125 created the commission charged with studying issues concerning vulnerable youth, reviewing and making  recommendations concerning pending legislation, and promoting information-sharing and best practices among entities that provide services for children.

“We are committed to improving the health, safety and well-being of Hoosier children, especially the most vulnerable,” Gov. Mike Pence said in a statement. “The Commission will promote greater coordination among agencies to ensure that effective services are available and accessible when the child needs them. I am confident in Justice Rush’s leadership on behalf of Hoosier children, and I look forward to working with her further on these important issues.”

Other commission members are: Department of Child Services Director Mary Beth Bonaventura; Rep. Rebecca Kubacki, R-Syracuse; Rep. Gail Riecken, D-Indianapolis; Sen. Travis Holdman, R-Fort Wayne; Sen. Tim Lanane, D-Anderson; Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz; Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council Director David Powell; Indiana Public Defender Council Director Larry Landis; Family and Social Services Administration Secretary Debra Minott; State Health Commission Dr. William VanNess II; Department of Correction Division of Youth Services Director Mike Dempsey; Division of State Court Administration Director Lilia Judson; Division of Mental Health and Addiction Director Kevin Moore; Henry County Chief Probation Officer Susan Lightfoot; Indiana State Budget Agency Director Brian Bailey; Office of the Governor Policy Director Ryan Streeter; and Attorney General Gregory Zoeller.

Meetings are also tentatively scheduled for Oct. 16 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Conference Rooms 1 & 2, and Dec. 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the same location. The meetings are open to the public.
 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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