Less than two months after becoming the 28th District’s state senator, Sen. Steve O’Ban was appointed chairman of the Senate Human Services and Corrections Committee.
The Pierce County native is following in the footsteps of the late Sen. Mike Carrell, a longtime champion of human services and corrections issues who was chairman of the committee until his death May 29.
“Leading this committee is a great responsibility and I am honored that my colleagues would entrust it to me,” said O’Ban.
The committee focuses on issues related to children and families, such as foster care, child protective and welfare services, family reconciliation and support programs, and mental-health issues. Additionally, support and consideration is given to issues surrounding custody, child support, law enforcement, registration of sex offenders, as well as operations of related state facilities such as the Department of Corrections, the Department of Social and Health Services-run Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration, and the DSHS Mental Health Division.
“My background as an attorney – representing people who have been harmed and are seeking help from the courts – will help me look out for the needs of the vulnerable; I want to make sure that we are effectively supporting and protecting children and their families. I look forward to continuing the work that Senator Carrell began many years ago.”
During this year’s legislative session, Sen. Kirk Pearson of Monroe led the committee from his position as vice chairman following Carrell’s death.