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      New task force will help protect children from abuse

      A new Task Force will help streamline Michigan's child abuse investigations while making sure the victims involved are safe.

      A new Task Force will help streamline Michigan's child abuse investigations while making sure the victims involved are safe.

      Governor Snyder issued Executive Order 2013-4 to create a more streamlined Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect to evaluate and make recommendations on how the state handles child abuse cases.

      The new Executive Order replaces EO 2010-18 and cuts the task force down from 34 to 18 members. Officials believe fewer members will help with efficiency and effectiveness.

      Among other issues, the Task Force will report on how child abuse and neglect cases are handled, making sure in particular, cases of child sexual abuse are investigated without additional trauma to the victims. The Task Force will also focus on the investigation and prosecution of cases of child abuse and neglect.

      Kenneth Tacoma of Cadillac is Chairperson of the Task Force. The other members include:

      Dan Adams, AllendaleLaw enforcement community

      Susan Hull, OxfordChild protective services agencies

      Lori Budnik, Rogers CityChild protection services agencies

      Lani Forbes, HastingsParents

      Terrence Gilsenan, WarrenChild Advocates

      Betsy Boggs, AdaParents groups

      Danielle Loupee, CassopolisChild protective services agencies

      Jennifer Pintar, Tawas CityLaw enforcement community

      Shannon Lowder, JacksonHealth and mental health professionals

      Robert Sykes, IoniaJudges and attorneys

      Julie Nakfoor Pratt, HastingsJudges and attorneys

      Lisa Wenger, Grosse PointeJudges and attorneys

      Fred Gruber, RiverviewChild advocates

      Linda Hallmark, Bloomfield HillsJudges and attorneys

      Robin Eagleson, East LansingJudges and attorneys

      Gary Anderson, OkemosHealth and mental health professionals

      Maura CorriganDepartment of Human Services