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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2013 - 2014 Regular Session


Posted: February 25, 2013 11:29 AM
From: Senator Wayne D. Fontana
To: All Senate members
Subject: Co Sponsorship: Reporting of Child Abuse by School Employees
In the near future, I plan to introduce legislation to address the recommendations made by the Task Force on Child Protection established by Senate Resolution 250. This is part of a bipartisan package of bills that deals with child abuse and protection. My legislation would amend the Child Protective Services portion of the Domestic Relations Code to provide that child abuse is investigated in the same manner for every report, regardless of the perpetrator.

I have introduced a form of this legislation every session since 2005 and my bill will include some of the previous language along with language to address some of the recommendations of the taskforce.

Currently, Pennsylvania law provides that if there is a case of suspected child abuse in which the alleged perpetrator is a school employee, there is no requirement to report that abuse unless it rises to the level of a “serious bodily injury.” A serious bodily injury is equivalent to the loss of a limb or an organ that stops functioning, sexual abuse, or sexual exploitation. The bill would amend the Child Protective Services Law so that child abuse reporting also applies to school employees where there is suspected child abuse.

Previous co-sponsors included Senators Kasunic, Tartaglione, Browne, Orie, Yaw, Rafferty, Farnese, Kitchen, Ward, Boscola, Pippy, Williams, Eichelberger, Leach, Mensch, Vance, Waugh, Costa, Hughes, Brewster, Solobay, Washington, Greenleaf, Baker, Stack, Argall, Yudichak, Wozniak, Blake, Alloway, D. White, Dinniman, Ferlo, Piccola and McIlhinney.

Introduced as SB31