DSS helps ensure families have correct child safety seats

PIERRE – The South Dakota Department of Social Services (DSS) is helping ensure children ride in the best child safety seat for their height and weight when parents can’t afford to buy one.

State law requires parents and caregivers use child safety seats. The “best” child safety seat is one that correctly fits the child, the vehicle, and is used correctly every time. South Dakota’s Child Safety Seat Distribution program provides proper child safety seats at no cost to families that meet income eligibility requirements as well as those who have children with special needs.

“Keeping children safe is always a top priority for DSS and that includes when they’re traveling in a car or truck,” said DSS Cabinet Secretary Laurie Gill. “Having a child in the best car seat is critical to their safety and that’s why this program is so important.”

There are several types of child safety restraints ranging from convertible seats to booster seats. You can learn more about each of these and other child safety seat information by visiting dss.sd.gov and clicking on the Child Care tab.

Keeping kids secure when they travel is critical to the DSS mission of strengthening families. Over the past four fiscal years, DSS and its distributing partners have provided more than 10,000 child safety seats in South Dakota. DSS currently has 69 distributing partners located in 44 counties across the state.

“DSS supports families with the resources they need to be healthy and safe,” Gill said. “We know child safety seats save lives.”

For more information about the program, including whether you qualify for a child seat and how to contact a program in your region, please visit dss.sd.gov and click on the Child Care tab.