Indiana spent $1.3M on child welfare studies, didn't act

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Five reviews of the Indiana Department of Child Services cost more than $1.3 million but yielded no state action to address the troubled agency's increasing caseloads.

The Journal Gazette reports that the existence of the studies conducted from 2013-2017 only became known when the Child Welfare Policy and Practice Group released its report last month. The studies analyzed training, organizational support and removing children from homes too quickly.

The reviews prompted Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma to say he was "disturbed" by the state's inaction.

Democratic Rep. Greg Porter says $1.3 million is "a lot of money for some reports that yielded no real return."

The agency's long-festering problems attracted attention in December when DCS Director Mary Beth Bonaventura resigned, saying cost-saving attempts by Gov. Eric Holcomb's administration would "all but ensure children will die."

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