Sen. MacGregor’s Safe Families legislation passes Senate

LANSING, Mich. — The state Senate on Thursday passed legislation spearheaded by state Sen. Peter MacGregor that will establish protections and other legal provisions so that nonprofit organizations that provide temporary child care for parents experiencing crisis can continue to operate without government interference.

Safe Families for Children (Safe Families) is a program that surrounds families experiencing crisis with a caring, compassionate community. It’s not an alternative to foster care; instead, Safe Families is a purely voluntary program meant to support a parent who may be facing unforeseen circumstances.

Safe Families is a private organization with a network of volunteers who open their homes to families in need. The program, partnered with a family service agency, temporarily places children into homes that can provide stable care and support to any child, whether the parent is hospitalized with illness, has extended travel for employment or military deployment or is in severe need for some other reason.

“Sometimes parents or guardians go through a crisis that renders them unable to provide care for a short period of time,” said MacGregor, R-Rockford. “In the past, extended family, neighbors, or their faith community stepped in to help families in crisis by caring for their children for short periods of time.”

“Today, sadly, many families are socially isolated, and their extended family is unavailable or unable to help. This is where Safe Families can step in and provide a safe home for these parents in crisis. The beauty of a program like Safe Families is that oftentimes the host family is able to provide mentoring long after the initial stay.”

Every volunteer host family who participates in the Safe Families program must complete mandatory training in addition to a thorough background check and home visit.

The legislation adjusts legal language to differentiate between foster care and Safe Families and protect private programs like these from government interference. MacGregor’s bill specifically would provide program safety requirements like certification, background checks and basic child care training for host families, regular home inspections, and the power for parents to delegate temporary guardianship of children.

While a process already exists for delegating power of attorney to care for a minor child, the creation of the Safe Families for Children Act will further clarify the rights of the parents in these situations.

“Programs like this not only save the state money by keeping children out of foster care, but they provide more compassionate solutions to what otherwise might become crisis situations,” MacGregor said. “No parent wants to be away from their child, but it’s comforting to know that programs like Safe Families exist should a situation arise where it is necessary.”

The bill package will now go to the House of Representatives for consideration.

 

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Sen. MacGregor continues free movie tickets for ‘12 Strong’ promotion for veterans and active military personnel

Sen. Peter MacGregor

Sen. Peter MacGregor

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Peter MacGregor, R-Rockford, again offered to pay the ticket price for any veteran or active military personnel who wants to see the new film “12 Strong” at the NorthStar Cinemas in Rockford.

“I was pleased with the response from last week’s event, and it was a pleasure to meet some of our local veterans,” MacGregor said. “I’ll be covering tickets again this week in case anybody couldn’t make it the first time.”

NorthStar Cinemas in Rockford will provide a free ticket to veterans and active military members courtesy of MacGregor on Thursday, Feb. 8, for all showings. See the cinema’s website for show times. Vets and military servicemen must provide a military identification or a driver’s license with military designation to receive free entry.

“12 Strong” is an action film based on the true story of the first U.S. Army Special Forces (“Green Berets”) unit in Afghanistan who led the military response against the Taliban following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

“Again, I hope everyone enjoys the movie, and if you have any veterans issues that you would like to see addressed, contact my staff at SenPMacGregor@senate.michigan.gov,” MacGregor said. “As always, thank you for your service.”

NorthStar Cinemas in Rockford is located at 11699 Northland Drive and can be reached at 616-863-0358.

 

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Reminder: Sen. MacGregor offers free movie tickets to veterans and active military personnel for ‘12 Strong’

Sen. Peter MacGregor

Sen. Peter MacGregor

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Peter MacGregor, R-Rockford, will pay the ticket price for any veteran or active military personnel who wants to see the new film “12 Strong” at the NorthStar Cinemas in Rockford.

NorthStar Cinemas in Rockford will provide a free ticket to veterans and active military members courtesy of MacGregor on Thursday, Feb. 1, at the 4:25 and 7 p.m. showings. Vets and military servicemen must provide a military identification or a driver’s license with military designation to receive free entry.

NorthStar Cinemas is located at 11699 Northland Drive in Rockford and can be reached at 616-863-0358.

 

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