SPRINGFIELD, ILL. — Legislation sponsored by state Rep. Tony McCombie, R-Savanna, to extend protections to DCFS and Adult Protective Services workers in honor of slain-DCFS worker Pam Knight has received the unanimous approval of the Illinois House of Representatives.
HB 1482 adds protections to DCFS and Adult Protective Service employees concerning assault, the same protections applied to teachers, police/fire, and other emergency responders who protect those in harm’s way.
“This is a public safety bill that closes a loophole to protect DCFS and Adult Protective Service workers. The loophole was discovered when DCFS worker Pam Knight was brutally beaten, and ultimately succumbed to her injuries,” said McCombie. “This bill was a long-time coming for Pam Knight’s family and our front-line workers in DCFS and Adult Protective Services.”
More than a dozen attacks have taken place since 2013. This legislation essentially closes a loophole in the law that omitted DCFS and Department of Aging workers from those harsher penalties that are applied when other public servants are attacked.
Knight was assaulted while performing a welfare check on Sept. 29, 2017, while trying to make sure a 2-year-old child was safe. She died Feb. 8, 2018. HB1482 will now move to the Illinois Senate, where Sen. Brian Stewart of Freeport, Illinois, has pre-filed to sponsor the legislation.