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Gov. Scott Signs Bill Into Law Helping Dozier Families, Taking Care Of Unclaimed Remains

Sascha Cordner

Families who want to rebury their loved ones who initially were buried at the now-closed Dozier School for Boys will be reimbursed, after Governor Rick Scott signed a bill into law doing just that.  That’s the Panhandle school associated with a history of alleged abuse.

Robert Straley says he’s happy the Governor signed the bill into law. He’s among many that say they survived the alleged abuse at the former reform school in Marianna.

“I think it’s wonderful! You know, when we started this back in 2007, really, all I wanted to see was Dozier closed down or at least tell the world what happened there.”

Dozier closed in 2011. And, years later, a University of South Florida research team found the remains of 51 boys buried on the Dozier grounds—7 of which have been positively IDed so far. The new law—which immediately took effect—sets up a task force to decide how to take care of the unclaimed remains. It also sets aside up to $7,500 for families who’ve been matched through DNA and want to rebury their loved ones.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.