House Bill 371: To Establish the Category of a Child in Need of Protective Services

Ohio
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Ohio

Last Updated: January 10, 2011
House Bill 371: To Establish the Category of a Child in Need of Protective Services
Sponsors:
Representatives Pillich, Belcher, Amstutz, Bacon, Bolon, Boyd, Celeste, Chandler, Combs, DeGeeter, Domenick, Fende, Foley, Garland, Hackett, Hagan, Harris, Letson, Murray, Newcomb, Okey, Patten, Phillips, Skindell, Ujvagi, Wagner, Weddington, B. Williams, S. Williams, and Yuko
Summary:

H.B. 371 is a 565 page bill that would rewrite Ohio’s current laws that define when a child is abused or neglected. The bill would change the language and structure of Ohio’s current abuse and neglect law substituting the language and structure known as “a child in need of services.” The bill creates seven general areas where state officials can choose to intervene in a family and would likely increase state intervention in the parent-child relationship.

The bill would also allow mandatory reporters to inform an appropriate public children services agency when they believe that “the agency’s intervention may help a child obtain legally required education.” It contains vague language that would allow for subjective interpretation significantly extending state authority to remove children from the home.

HSLDA's Position:
Oppose.

HSLDA is following this legislation closely and is coordinating with Ohio leaders and will keep you informed regarding the status of this bill.

Action Requested:
None at this time
Status:

11/17/2009 (House) Introduced
11/30/2009 (House) Referred to Civil and Commercial Law committee
2/8/2010 (House) House Civil and Commercial Law committee meeting: 2/9/2010 1:00 p.m. Room 116
This bill is dead.

Background:

Parents play an irreplaceable role in the lives of their children. The vital child-parent relationship has been shown to positively impact a child’s physical, mental, and emotional well-being. For generations, the right of parents to raise their children has been continually upheld by Supreme Court jurisprudence and is deeply valued by millions of American families. However, parental rights are being eroded and parents, in many ways, are becoming “second class citizens” as lower courts elevate the power of the state to supersede the wisdom of parents.

In recent years it has become frighteningly common for homeschoolers to be wrongfully accused of abuse and neglect on hotlines to state child welfare departments. Individuals who do not like homeschoolers can simply make an anonymous phone call and fabricate abuse stories about their neighbors. Social workers who then have a duty to investigate attempt to follow a one-size-fits-all approach regardless of whether allegations are true or not. Statistics show that up to 60 percent of children removed from their homes by social workers were taken away from their parents without probable cause of abuse. For more information about parental rights visit www.parentalrights.org.

HSLDA desires to assist its member families when they are contacted by social service agencies and maintains a hotline that members may call at any time if they are having an interaction with police, social workers, or other state officials regarding homeschooling or their fundamental constitutional rights.

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Bill Text

Bill History

HB 371: Threatening Ohio Children