Professor Jerry Foxhoven, executive director of the Neal and Bea Smith Legal Clinic and professor of law at Drake Law School, has been appointed chair of a task force overseeing recommendations regarding the Iowa Juvenile Home.
The governor signed Executive Order 82, which immediately holds the Iowa Juvenile Home to higher standards of care. The facility will be held to the same standards for restraint or seclusion as a private comprehensive residential facility. These increased standards for care will lead to greater safety, transparency and oversight in treatment for children at the Iowa Juvenile Home.
The executive order will also establish a five-member task force to formulate new recommendations for the juvenile home and assist in their implementation. Their responsibilities are as follows:
a. Make recommendations about how to improve services for residents;
b. Review incident data to ensure a high-level of care is delivered at the Iowa Juvenile Home;
c. Recommend a strategy for the permanent elimination of seclusion rooms outside the cottage setting;
d. Recommend a strategy outlining the transition of the Iowa Juvenile Home’s education plan from being managed from the Department of Human Services to Area Education Agency 267; and
e. Reach other goals and objectives as requested by the Office of the Governor.
Additional members of the task force members appointed by the governor include:
Charles Palmer, Director, Iowa Department of Human Services
Dr. Mary Stevens, Director of Special Education, Area Education Agency 267
Dr. Mark R. Peltan, Chairman, Council on Human Services
Ron Stehl, former Executive Director, Youth Homes of Mid-America
The task force report is due Oct. 15.