Kansas Governor Pushes For ‘Faith-Based’ Partnerships

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is expected to push for “faith-based” partnerships to provide social services after choosing an advocate of the concept as secretary of the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services.

Rob Siedlecki served as senior counsel with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Task Force on Faith-based Initiatives during the George W. Bush administration. Like Brownback, he believes state government should enlist the religious community to address societal problems.

During confirmation hearings, Siedlecki said he is considering a voucher system for drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs to avoid constitutional problems inherent in direct governmental aid to religious groups.

According to the Kansas Reporter, he said, “[Clients] cannot be sent against their will to a faith-based program. If it’s a choice for the individual, there can be a faith element.”