TOPEKA — Kansas Gov.-elect Laura Kelly is up in arms with the state’s troubled child welfare agency for spending public funds to undercut research linking welfare restrictions with a rise in the number of abused children in foster care.
The Kansas City Star reports the Kansas Department for Children and Families recently released a $24,000 report questioning University of Kansas research that Kelly has cited. The KU research found that certain cash assistance restrictions in recent years have fueled abuse and foster care placements.
Kelly has expressed a desire to roll back the welfare restrictions, but it’s unclear if she’ll be able to with a Republican-controlled Legislature.
DCF Secretary Gina Meier-Hummel says the report shows the state can’t rely on one study to change public policy. Kelly plans to replace Meier-Hummel when she takes office Jan. 14.