INDIANA’S FAMILY IMPACT SEMINARS

One of the best ways to help individuals is by strengthening their families. Family Impact Seminars seek to analyze the consequences an issue, policy, or program may have on families. Indiana Family Impact Seminars are supported by the Indiana Consortium of Family Organizations.

What are Family Impact Seminars?

Family Impact Seminars are non-partisan educational sessions summarizing current research on a particular family issue and are targeted toward legislators, legislative staff and other key decision-makers. Family Impact Seminars have the following goals:

  1. To provide objective, nonpartisan information on family issues;
  2. To analyze the consequences an issue, policy, or program has for family well-being;
  3. To promote family well-being as a criterion for policy making; and
  4. To illustrate the central role of families in addressing social problems.

Rationale

In Indiana, the role of the legislator is a part-time position. In order to write legislation that is effective and appropriate, legislators need current research and evidence. Information about family issues currently provided by lobbyists, interest groups and other special constituencies to legislators can be fragmented and sometimes biased. Policy decisions are more effective when they are based on strong evidence. Policy decisions can be more efficient if they leverage the contributions families make to society by viewing issues through the lens of family impacts. Policy making can be less polarized if opportunities are provided for neutral, off-the-record dialogue that can build the relationships needed to overcome partisan gridlock.

Who attends Family Impact Seminars?

• House and Senate members
• Chairs of Committees
• Governor’s Office representatives
• State Department/Agency officials
• Human Service Providers
• COFO members

Indiana is one of several states to sponsor such seminars for state policymakers. For additional information on Family Impact Seminars, visit the Family Impact Institute website, or contact the center.