Earlier this morning, U.S. District Court Judge Jorge Alonso approved an order mandating the State of Illinois to continue to fund programs, services, and personnel within the Department of Children and Family Services during the current budget impasse. The order enforces the requirements of a consent decree overseen by the ACLU of Illinois, which requires the State to provide constitutionally-required services to the children under the care of DCFS. The State joined the ACLU in seeking the order approved by Judge Alonso this morning.

The following can be attributed to Benjamin Wolf, associate legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois:

We are pleased that Judge Alonso acted quickly to protect the most vulnerable children in our State. The absence of a budget plan for the new fiscal year does not relieve the State from meeting its constitutional obligations to children within the DCFS system.

Even as we work through this impasse, we will continue to work to improve conditions for all children under the care of DCFS, ensuring that the State provides these vulnerable children with care, services and tools they need to survive, grow and flourish.

Read more about the ACLU's work to protect children under the care of DCFS.