House Bill 4147 gives DCFS workers the same protections as police and firemen
Springfield…Today, State Representative Brian Stewart (R-Freeport) filed House Bill 4147 to make attacking a DCFS workers in performance of their duties an aggravated battery and a Class 1 felony.
House Bill 4147, filed this week, would make battering a Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) in the performance of his/her official duties or in response to their official duties an aggravated battery and a Class 1 felony. Aggravated battery subject perpetrators to more severe penalties when facing prosecution and sentencing.
“My deepest sympathies and get well-wishes go out to the victim of this horrible attack, her family and everyone in her DCFS family. Everyday DCFS workers put themselves at risk to protect the most vulnerable children in our communities,” said Rep. Stewart. “This legislation will give DCFS workers the same protections as policemen, firemen, and peace officers who also put themselves in harm’s way.”
This legislation is in response to the September 29th tragedy where a 59-year-old DCFS worker in Milledgeville was checking on a child when she was viciously assaulted by the child’s father.
State Representatives Tony McCombie (R-Savanna) and Tom Demmer (R-Dixon), and John Cabello (R-Rockford) who will be chief co-sponsoring HB 4147, expressed their support of this legislation.
“I continue to pray for the victim of this senseless act of violence. It’s unfortunate an act of violence was inflicted on anyone in order for legislation to be proposed, however, this bill will give DCFS workers along with other public servants the additional legal protections they deserve,” said Rep. McCombie.
“It’s unfortunate that this type of measure is needed, but the safety of these state employees charged with protecting child welfare is paramount. Their work in protecting children and stepping into dangerous situations warrant additional penalty for those who cause them harm in the performance of their duties,” said Rep. Demmer.
Current law makes it an aggravated battery and a Class 1 felony offense when the suspect causes great bodily harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement to peace officers, community policing volunteers, firemen, private security officers, correctional institution employees, or certain Department of Human Services employees.