Less than twenty-four hours after Governor Eric Greitens announced his resignation, effective June 1, many Missourians are asking, “What now and what does this mean?” As child and family advocates coming off of what has clearly been one of the better legislative years for our most vulnerable children, we have reflected on this as well. Our conclusion: the work will move forward and we are in good shape.
During the Governor’s tenure, the First Lady, Dr. Sheena Greitens, worked tirelessly on behalf of Missouri’s children in foster care, and put a spotlight on both their pain and our opportunity and obligation to do better by them. We are grateful to her. We take heart, however, in how our legislators and community-based partners also led in this effort and gave voice to the work of improving the lives of our most vulnerable children. Capitalizing on this singleness of purpose and resulting momentum, Missouri made important strides to advance child safety, health and education, and support opportunity for normalcy and permanent families. Helping our most at-risk children brings Missourians together like few other issues can, and a change in administrations will not change this fact.
Missouri is also fortunate that Lt. Governor Mike Parson, who will be sworn in as Governor June 1, shares this strong commitment to Missouri children and families. We are confident that the partnerships and cooperation that made 2018 successful will continue, and look forward to supporting the incoming administration in any way we can to protect and serve our most vulnerable.