Protecting those who need it most

In Shelby County, children are our most precious resource.

It is in everyone’s interest to make sure our children are safe — especially children already exposed to abuse.

That’s why we were pleased to hear the county is seeking a $400,000 federal grant to develop a supervised visitation and exchange center with Family Connection.

Once the center is established, it’ll be much easier for social workers to protect the rights of parents while also protecting the safety of children or abuse victims.

Children and other abuse victims deserve to feel safe when seeing anyone who was abusive, even a parent.

This center will give kids that opportunity.

Parents, even abusive parents, still have rights under our laws.

We must respect those rights, but our first responsibility is always to the children, who need protection.

We were also pleased to see the county facing this responsibility in a financially smart way.

The grant, which would be from the U.S. Department of Justice, requires no match from the county.

While such a visitation center could still be years away, it’s good to know our county officials are doing their best to develop projects to benefit all our citizens, especially those needing help the most.