Mara Powell

Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director, Kentucky Youth Advocates

LOUISVILLE, KY – When the terrible event that a child fatality or near fatality due to maltreatment occurs, Kentucky must have strong systems in place to ensure it never happens again. Thankfully, the Kentucky General Assembly recognizes that imperative with final passage of Senate Bill 97 today by the House via consent orders.

SB 97, sponsored by Senator Danny Carroll, will bolster efforts following a child fatality or near fatality, including requiring coroners to immediately notify law enforcement, the Department for Community Based Services, and local health department upon the death of a child. The measure also strengthens the External Child Fatality and Near Fatality Review Panel, which is tasked with reviewing cases and making recommendations to relevant state agencies to prevent these horrific outcomes from happening again.

As we approach April as Child Abuse Prevention Month, we are reminded that every adult is a mandated reporter of child maltreatment and has a role to play in preventing abuse and neglect from happening in the first place. With our partners in the Kosair Charities Face It Movement, we thank Senator Carroll for championing SB 97 and the Kentucky House for supporting its final passage today. We call on the Governor to sign this measure into law.

Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.


About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at