Indiana DCS responds to suit over care provided to children

(Photo Supplied/Indiana Department of Child Services)

Indiana’s child welfare agency is responding to a federal lawsuit accusing it of failing to protect 22,000 foster children with open child welfare cases.

The lawsuit filed June 25 by Indiana Disability Rights, the national advocacy group A Better Childhood and a New York-based law firm alleges that the plaintiffs have suffered serious physical and psychological harm while in state care.

But in a video posted online Monday, the Indiana Department of Child Services’ director says the agency has made significant strides in the past year.

DCS Director Terry Stigdon also says it’s “easy to cherry-pick our most challenging cases to support a narrative suggesting this is every child’s experience” but the average number of homes a foster child lives in while in state care is two.