Meth manufacturers now face child abuse and neglect charges     Send a link to a friend

[AUG. 12, 2004]  SPRINGFIELD -- In an effort to better protect children from the dangers of illegal drugs, Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed Senate Bill 2447, adding methamphetamine drug manufacturing to a list of incidents and circumstances defined as abuse or neglect. The bill allows the use of proof that a minor was present in a structure or vehicle in which the minor's parent, custodian or guardian was involved in the manufacture of methamphetamine to constitute obvious evidence of abuse and neglect. Methamphetamine use and manufacturing is a growing problem in Illinois -- in 2003, the Illinois State Police seized 971 methamphetamine labs.

"This legislation is a big step forward as we continue to make sure children in Illinois are safe," said Gov. Blagojevich. "Too many children are exposed to emotional, physical or environmental hazards when surrounded by drug activity. I have strong feelings about adults who expose children to the dangers of a drug environment, and signing this bill is the best way I can get that message across."

Senate Bill 2447, sponsored by Sen. Dale A. Righter, R-Mattoon, and Rep. Chapin Rose, R-Charleston, amends the Juvenile Court Act of 1987 and results in the Department of Children and Family Services adding methamphetamine manufacturing to its current list of abuse and neglect allegations.


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"By the governor signing this bill, we now have additional means to protect more children," said Bryan Samuels, director of the Department of Children and Family Services. "We can offer families involved in drug manufacturing child welfare services that provide alternatives to their current lifestyle, and if needed, we can provide an environment for the children that is less likely to put them in harm's way."

This legislation is effective Jan. 1, 2005.

[News release from the governor's office]

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