From the HSLDA E-lert Service:
< BACK TO ARCHIVE

Date:
From:
Subject:

5/5/2010 3:52:47 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Ohio: Update on HB 371--Bad Bill Slows Down But Still a Threat

======================================================================
From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
======================================================================


Ohio: Update on HB 371--Bad Bill Slows Down But Still a Threat

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

The Civil and Commercial Law Committee is still considering House Bill
371, a 565-page bill that would restructure Ohio's abuse and neglect
code and increase state intervention in the parent-child relationship.
The bill's language singles out corporal discipline as a reason for
state intervention and creates seven new and vague categories under
which social workers could further justify taking whatever actions
they deem appropriate during a social service investigation.

An article published on April 26, 2010 by the Wooster Daily Record
tells of a vigorous debate over whether the bill would actually
provide any beneficial reform. Opponents of the bill argue that the
language is vague and gives discretionary authority to social workers
and judges who already have a lot of authority and discretion. One of
the bill's sponsors, Representative Ron Amstutz, admits that the bill
is in need of "corrective language." He notes that if the language is
left the way it is, "almost every family would find themselves in
violation."

The director of Job and Family Services in Holmes County, Dan Jackson,
has expressed concern that the bill would cause an overwhelming
increase in calls to his agency. Consequently, children who are truly
in need of services may fall through the cracks, while families who
are completely innocent may be subjected to invasive intrusions.

To read the full article, visit:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=8250


BACKGROUND

HSLDA believes that all children should be provided a loving and
nurturing environment by their parents. We agree that the state has a
role to play in protecting innocent children from irresponsible
parents or others. This bill, however, goes too far in extending
government authority and would create a dangerous framework that would
undermine family autonomy and put children at risk. Ohio's current
child protective system is overloaded--passing this law would put an
even greater strain on it to the detriment of children who
legitimately require state assistance and protection. Please take
action as requested below.

This bill creates seven new categories establishing when a child is in
need of protective services. The bill uses vague terms that would
allow government officials great latitude for subjective
interpretation. This would significantly expand state authority to
remove children from the home or to interfere in Ohio families.

The bill defines "lacking legally required education" to be when a
child of compulsory school age has not regularly attended school, has
not received a legitimate excuse, and has not received other education
services as required by state law. The bill allows a "mandatory
reporter" to inform an appropriate public children services agency
when he or she believes that "the agency's intervention may help a
child obtain legally required education." Mandatory reporters include
doctors and health care professionals!

The bill explicitly justifies intervention for the use of corporal
discipline and includes new categories of harm such as "emotional
injury," "lacking necessary health care," "lacking care or
supervision," and "exposure to substance misuse." This kind of vague
language leaves the door open for subjective interpretation. H.B.
371 also allows law enforcement officers to take a child into custody
when there are "reasonable grounds to believe that the child's parent
... committed an act or omission that indicates that the child is a
child in need of protective services." No person should be allowed to
take another person into custody without probable cause that harm has
or imminently will occur. This kind of language undermines the
responsibility and authority of parents and places the state in a
position to determine what is best for children.

For more information on why you should oppose this bill, read attorney
Jason Fuller's analysis on our website here.
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=8251


Thank you for your strong support of freedom in the Buckeye state!

Standing with you!


Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
Staff Attorney

----------------------------------------------------------------------
-> How many news articles did you read this morning over your
oatmeal?

We live in a world where concise information presented at the
right time can make a big difference in the outcome of important
legislative efforts. Yet it's tough to keep up with all the
issues that affect you. HSLDA does this for you in the areas that
affect your homeschool. Our emails and website enable you to
take quick, decisive action. Please consider becoming a part of
this team.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1923

----------------------------------------------------------------------
======================================================================
The HSLDA E-lert Service is a service of:

Home School Legal Defense Association
P.O. Box 3000
Purcellville, Virginia 20134
Phone: (540) 338-5600
Fax: (540) 338-2733
Email: info@hslda.org
Web: http://www.hslda.org

----------------------------------------------------------------------
How To Subscribe:

- Subscribe to the HSLDA E-lert Service at our website:

https://secure.hslda.org/hslda/elert/account.asp?Process=Subscribe

- Or send an email with name and complete mailing address to:

subscribe@hslda.org

----------------------------------------------------------------------
Subscription Information:

- You subscribed to the HSLDA E-lert Service as:

##ToAddress##

- To unsubscribe from the HSLDA E-lert Service send an email from
the email address you want to unsubscribe to:

unsubscribe@hslda.org

- To change your email address or make other changes to your
subscription, visit the HSLDA E-lert Service account web page at:

https://secure.hslda.org/hslda/elert/account.asp

----------------------------------------------------------------------
POSTMASTERS: This message is being sent to the most recent address we
have for our subscribers. If this is an invalid email address or you
have other problems, please reply to webmaster@hslda.org.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
DISCLAIMER: This is considered a private and confidential message
from HSLDA to its bonafide HSLDA E-lert Service subscribers.
HSLDA cannot attest to the authenticity of copies posted, forwarded,
or sent by any party other than HSLDA.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
NOTE: Please do not reply or otherwise use this email address;
hslda@hslda.org is for broadcast purposes only and is not intended to
receive incoming messages. We cannot reply to any email sent to this
address. If you have comments or questions, please send email to
info@hslda.org or call HSLDA at 540-338-5600. HSLDA members can also
email staff directly through the Members website at
http://members.hslda.org/contact.asp. Thank you for your cooperation.
======================================================================