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Westport, CT 06880

Office Phone 
203-557-5548

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Frequently Asked Questions

 Connecticut Public Act No. 16-210 (Bill 347) AN ACT ESTABLISHING A PROGRAM FOR COURT APPOINTED SPECIAL ADVOCATES IN CERTAIN JUVENILE COURT MATTERS

Signed into Law June 10, 2016

 

What is Public Act No. 16-210 (Bill 347) ?
16-210 provides statutory recognition of Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteers to work with Connecticut’s most vulnerable children in the child protection system.  This opens the door for CASA volunteers to help more abused and neglected children in our state.  Click here for Bill 347: https://www.cga.ct.gov/2016/ACT/pa/2016PA-00210-R00SB-00347-PA.htm

Is Connecticut a leader or falling behind in helping abused/neglected children?
Connecticut hass fallen behind. Currently, only 5% of the abused or neglected children have a volunteer advocate in our state. This significantly trails the nationwide average of 35% of children being helped by volunteer advocates. 


Are volunteer advocates prepared to support more abused and neglected children?
Yes.
Child Advocates of SW Connecticut's trained volunteer advocates will ramp up efforts on behalf of these children. 

 

In this difficult fiscal environment, can Connecticut afford Public Act No. 16-210 (Bill 347) ?
Bill 347 entails no cost to the State of Connecticut.  CASA volunteers are recruited, trained and supervised by local non-profit members of the National CASA Organization.  The program is community funded and community supported.  Any additional funds required will be fundraised in the community. CASA represents community, grassroots activism at its finest.

 

Is Public Act No. 16-210 (Bill 347) endorsed by Connecticut’s Department of Children and Families (DCF)?
Yes.  DCF is a strong advocate of the Bill.

 

Will Public Act No. 16-210 (Bill 347) lead to confusion among state agencies and other related entities?
For over 20 years, volunteer advocates in Connecticut have successfully worked with abused/neglected children without confusion.  16-210 expands the opportunities for more volunteers to help more children, without disturbing the current legislative framework or other community networks.