Like us, you have probably been encouraged to see state leaders begin to take action to address child fatalities due to abuse and neglect. But time is running out, and no bills to address the issue have passed the legislature yet. The following three child welfare related bills have a final shot at passage this session, and legislators need to hear from you. With one three minute phone call TODAY, you can leave a message about all three of the bills below. Call the legislative message line, 1-800-372-7181, TODAY and leave the following messages:
House Bill 200 HB 200 is Representative Susan Westrom’s bill to create an external child fatality review process and to establish an Independent Office of Investigation for Child Protective Services. This bill is a critical step in reviewing child fatalities in order to determine the cause of death, which creates better accountability for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services. HB 200 has already passed unanimously through the House and is waiting to be heard in the Senate Health and Welfare Committee.
Please leave a message for the members of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee and Senate leadership to ask them to “Take action on HB 200 this session to create better government transparency and accountability in order to end child abuse fatalities.”
House Bill 239 HB 239 is Representative Susan Westrom’s bill to open courts on a pilot basis in cases of child abuse and neglect. This bill is a first step in better understanding and monitoring the court process and decision-making regarding children who are abused and neglected. It is designed to create a more transparent system so that children are better protected from abuse and neglect. HB 239 has already passed unanimously through the House and is currently waiting to be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Please leave a message for Senate leadership and the Senate Judiciary Committee members TODAY and ask them to “Take action this session on HB 239 to improve the child welfare system by implementing this pilot program.”
Senate Bill 213 SB 213 is Senator Ken Winters’s bill to improve access to “Transitional Living Supports” for youth who have aged out of foster care. SB 213 has already passed unanimously through the Senate. It was sent to the House on Friday and needs a hearing in the House Health and Welfare committee.
Please leave a message for the members of House leadership and the House Health and Welfare Committee to ask them to “Support SB 213 to ensure the success of youth who have aged out of foster care.”