For the children
I was touched by the story of the University of Kansas students who helped rescue a young boy while they were on spring break in Destin, Fla. (March 16, 4A, “Three KU fraternity brothers rescued boy from riptide”)
The three young men heard a child’s cry. Without hesitation, they jumped into the churning waters of the Atlantic and, with teamwork, brought the child to shore.
I can’t help but contrast these young men with our legislative leaders in Kansas.
Two years ago, legislators formed a child welfare task force composed of advocates, experts, state officials and front-line workers from across the state. Together, they hammered out policy recommendations for improving the services that children in peril and their struggling parents receive.
I was in the gallery when Gov. Laura Kelly gave her State of the State address. She shared her daily anguish when thinking of the children who have died and those still suffering in the state’s foster care system. She asked legislators to work with her to protect them. The legislators stood and applauded loudly.
As this session’s days pass, I ask: What happened to this commitment? Where is the response to the task force’s recommendations?
Perhaps all of us could learn something from the KU students. Please ask your legislators to “jump in” and respond to Kansas children in crisis.
Kansas City, Kan.