Statement on Governor Matt Bevin Signing HB 1 into Law
Today, Kentucky Youth Advocates joined Governor Matt Bevin, Representative David Meade, Representative Joni Jenkins, Kosair Charities®, partners in the Face It® Movement to End Child Abuse, and Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children partners to celebrate Governor Bevin’s ceremonial signing of House Bill 1, which was co-sponsored by Representative David Meade and Representative Joni Jenkins and received bipartisan support from the 2018 Kentucky General Assembly.
“Every Kentucky child deserves a family and a safe place to call home. House Bill 1 fundamentally reforms Kentucky’s adoption and foster care system, prioritizing kids’ needs and ensuring families are safe and supported. We applaud Representative Meade and Representative Jenkins for their diligent work to gather input and support for this legislation. Their leadership made HB 1 a reality for Kentucky kids,” said Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates.
HB 1 sets forth a comprehensive plan to strengthen how the commonwealth supports children impacted by abuse or neglect and their families. The bill strengthens supports to help keep families together safely and, when that’s not possible, addresses timelines for adoption cases so that children can more quickly move toward finding a permanent family. HB 1 includes a number of changes that evaluate and improve the performance of programs serving kids and families and helps ensure decisions prioritize the best interest of the child. The bill also thoughtfully addresses neonatal substance exposure to prioritize what is best to ensure women seek and receive substance use treatment for the health and safety of their child.
“As a movement committed to preventing and ending child abuse and neglect in Kentucky, we at the Kosair Charities’ Face It Movement are eager to see the impact of this robust piece of legislation. Keeping kids safe is an adult responsibility and House Bill 1 ensures there are measures in place to protect kids and support families,” said Keith Inman, president of Kosair Charities.
Kentucky Youth Advocates thanks Governor Matt Bevin and First Lady Glenna Bevin, Representatives Meade and Jenkins, and members of the House Working Group on Adoption, including Representatives Robert Benvenuti, Jeff Donohue, Derrick Graham, Donna Mayfield, Melinda Prunty, and Russell Webber, for their ongoing commitment to protecting Kentucky kids from experiencing abuse and neglect. We look forward to continuing these efforts together in the implementation of House Bill 1.
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 kyyouth.org.