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  News  


KANKAKEE DCFS OFFICE
RELOCATES TO NEW DOWNTOWN SITE

KANKAKEE, IL, JANUARY 8, 1999 -- Kankakee Mayor Donald Green and the Department of children and Family Services today held a ribbon-cutting ceremony to announce the relocation of the Kankakee Field Office to a redeveloped site in downtown Kankakee.
The new facility at 505 S. Schuyler Ave. is community friendly, providing easy access to the building and parking.

"The development of the location into office space and other usage is only the beginning of the continual redevelopment of downtown Kankakee," said Mayor Green.

Alderman Joanne Schwade (2nd Ward) agreed. "It's wonderful to see the building renovated and in use again. Activity there is vital," she said.

The newly developed site, just a short distance from the former location at 301 N. Schuyler Ave., will be home to 32 DCFS employee, including the Divisions of Child Protection, Child Welfare, and Clinical Services, and clerical staff.

"DCFS is pleased to be one of the many benefactors of this newly renovated office building downtown," said DCFS Director Jess McDonald. "The new accommodations will allow staff to better serve the community, our clients and foster parents, and our child welfare partners.

The Kankakee Field Office occupied its previous location from July 1990 to December 1998. In Kankakee County, there are currently 207 licensed foster home, and 408 children in substitute care. In Fiscal Year 1998, there were 805 family reports of abuse and neglect in Kankakee County made to the state Central Register. Of those reports, 264 resulted in indicated findings of abuse and/or neglect of children.

The community benefits from city efforts to refurbish and restore downtown, said officials of the Chamber of Commerce.

"Anytime we take an eyesore and turn it into a viable business space, everyone wins," says chamber of Commerce President David Hinderliter. "It's a big enhancement."

The new office will also help boost employee morale, because the new space provides staff with the tools needed to reinforce professional conduct among clients, partners and the community, said Northern Region Administrator Tom Brinton.

"This office is a major step in supporting Kankakee staff and the community with an improved work environment. Staff now have plenty of training rooms, and the new parent-child visiting rooms are family friendly," Brinton. said.

The new telephone number for the Kankakee Field Office is 815-939-8140. Business hours are Monday through Friday, from 8:30 s.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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