Children's Justice Task Force
The Illinois Children’s Justice Task Force is a multidisciplinary, legislatively-mandated advisory group that is charged with making recommendations to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) directed at improving investigative, administrative and judicial handling of child abuse cases in a manner that limits additional trauma to the child victim. Increased focus is placed on cases of child sex abuse/exploitation, child fatalities in cases where abuse or neglect is suspected and cases involving a combination of jurisdictions. The task force was organized in 1989 according to the guidelines in the federal Child Abuse Prevention Treatment Act (CAPTA) and in 1999 it became one of the four Illinois Citizen Review Panels.
The members of the Illinois Children’s Justice Task Force represent legislatively-mandated categories from the fields of child protection, law enforcement, medical, mental health, attorneys for prosecution and defense, criminal and civil court judges, education, children with disabilities, child advocates, parent advocates, child abuse survivors, individuals knowledgeable about children with disabilities, dually-involved children and children who are homeless. The task force members are appointed by the director of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services to staggered four-year terms.