Senate Passes Bill to Rebury Students From Dozier School

Posted at 6:57 PM, Feb 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-24 14:06:09-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida would pay to rebury students whose remains were once interred on the grounds of a now shuttered reform school under a bill passed by the Florida Senate.

The Senate voted unanimously Wednesday for a bill (SB 708) that tries to help Florida deal with the legacy of the Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys. The Marianna school was shuttered in 2001, and some former students have accused authorities of physical and sexual abuse.

In an investigation, researchers exhumed dozens of bodies from the campus 60 miles west of Tallahassee.

The bill sponsored by Sen. Arthenia Joyner would require state officials to preserve any records, artifacts or remains that were found on the school site. It would also provide up to $7,500 for funeral and burial expenses for each body exhumed from Dozier.

The bill also requires state officials to begin planning for a memorial.