Daily Archives: April 8, 2010

Social worker’s death prompts new safety law

Six years ago Johnson County social worker Teri Zenner was brutally murdered by a teenage client.

Today, her family celebrated as Kansas Gov. Mark Parkinson signed into law legislation requiring safety training for every new social worker. Zenner’s widower, Matt Zenner, pushed for the legislation in the hopes of preventing future deaths.

“What happened to Teri shouldn’t happen to anyone,” said Zenner, an Olathe resident. “This is huge.”

The new law requires new social workers to take at least six hours of personal safety training as part of the 40 hours of continuing education required for all first-time license renewals. Most social workers will get the training soon after graduating with a social work degree.

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State Supreme Court denies petition to halt cuts to disabled services

TOPEKA – The Kansas Supreme Court on Thursday denied a petition that would have stopped the state from cutting money to community based programs and services for the developmentally disabled.

The petition had asked the high court to restore $10 million in funding cuts and a 10 percent cut to the Medicaid rate for caregivers. The reductions were part of cuts lawmakers and the governor had enacted to help balance the state budget.

But the court ruled that it lacked jurisdiction to issue an order in the case, which had not been filed in district court first.

Plaintiffs claimed the cuts violated state and federal laws which require Kansas to provide services to vulnerable citizens such as the developmentally disabled.

State offers video tutorial for first-time unemployment applicants

TOPEKA – The Kansas Labor Department is offering online help for those applying for unemployment for the first time via the internet.

The 10 minute video is available on the department’s initial application page.

“We hope this tutorial takes some of the anxiety out of filing online,” said Labor Secretary Jim Garner in a written statement. “It helps when you can listen to a real person walking you through the steps.”

The video, created by the department, takes an applicant through the entire process from creating a user name and a PIN number to calculating gross wages from their last employer.

If the video will not work, there is also written transcript of the video.