Goal of protecting children is within court’s reach by Bob Dvorsky, State Senator · Op-Ed · January 24, 2014
In his Condition of the Judiciary address this year, the Chief Justice of the Iowa Supreme Court told legislators that the goal of protecting Iowa’s children is within reach.
Justice Cady praised the Legislature’s bipartisan efforts to make that and other Court successes possible.
The Legislature’s support has allowed the courts to hire more juvenile court officers. These are the public servants who meet face-to-face with young people in trouble and guide them toward better behavior that will help them become successful adults. The work of our juvenile court officers improves public safety for all Iowans and ultimately saves taxpayer dollars.
Family Treatment Courts work with community professionals to help Iowans struggling with substance abuse or other problems that put them at risk of losing their parental rights. So far, 463 families — including 549 parents and 900 children — have participated in Family Treatment Courts. The results are spectacular: 95 percent of the kids suffer no further abuse or neglect.
With a boost in funding for our courts last year, every clerk of court office in the state is now open full-time, providing access the services Iowans need and the justice they deserve.
Efforts to maintain an open and transparent court system also continue to be successful. The Iowa Supreme Court holds hearings throughout Iowa and even visits local schools. By traveling the state, the Justices give local Iowans a glimpse of how our court system works.
To contact Senator Dvorsky during the week, call the Senate Switchboard at 515-281-3371. Otherwise he can be reached at home at 319-351-0988. E-mail him at email@example.com.