Originally Sent: 4/24/2014
|From the HSLDA e-lert service|
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HSLDA to Testify Against Senate Bill 27
Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:
On Tuesday, April 29, at 9:30 a.m., HSLDA Attorney Tj Schmidt will testify against Pennsylvania Senate Bill 27 before the House Committee on Children and Youth at the Capitol in Harrisburg. This bill constitutes a gross invasion of privacy and violation of parental rights.
Senate Bill 27 has to do with the exchange of information between child protective services (CPS) and medical practitioners during an investigation by CPS for abuse or neglect. It would eliminate the traditional physician-patient privilege by which physicians are required to keep medical information confidential. It would also entitle medical practitioners to obtain information about investigations from CPS that have nothing to do with a child’s health.
First, in any report of suspected child abuse, the bill states that the medical practitioner must provide CPS with medical information about the child and any other child in the household. Information on other children in the home must be provided even if there has been no report of abuse of these other children. All of this information must be provided to CPS without the consent of the parent, a court order, or a subpoena.
Second, if requested by a medical practitioner, CPS must provide the medical practitioner with information about any investigation involving a child who is a patient. This includes CPS records regarding this child and any other child in the home, as well as the identity of other medical practitioners treating the child from whom medical records may be obtained.
Third, even without the request of the child’s medical practitioner, CPS is obligated to provide the medical practitioner with information about any investigation involving the child, any service plan developed for the child and the child’s family, and the outcome of the investigation. This information must be provided to the medical practitioner regardless of the nature of the investigation. This means that if the parents are being investigated for such things as failing to properly supervise their children or educate them appropriately, their medical professional will receive all information about the investigation.
It will be an uphill battle to stop this bill because it already has considerable momentum by passing the Senate by a vote of 50-0. Members of the House Committee on Children and Youth need to know that the citizens of Pennsylvania object to this unwarranted and unreasonable disclosure of personal information about their family.
Please pray for Tj Schmidt as he offers testimony against this bill, that he would be able to persuade members of the committee of the dangers of this proposed law.
2. Please call and/or email members of the House Committee on Children and Youth with this message or something similar in your own words:
“Please vote against Senate Bill 27, which constitutes an invasion of privacy and a violation of parental rights. It requires the release of medical information by a medical practitioner to child protective services without parental consent, a court order, or a subpoena. It also requires CPS to provide the medical professional with all information about an investigation, even if the investigation does not involve the health of the child.”
It is not necessary to identify yourself as a homeschooler, as this is a matter that should be of concern to every family in Pennsylvania.
If your last name begins with A-K, please contact:
Katharine M. Watson
Louise Williams Bishop
Keith J. Greiner
John A. Lawrence
David M. Maloney Sr.
If your last name begins with L-Z, please contact:
Michelle F. Brownlee
Kevin J. Boyle
Daniel J. Deasy
Daniel L. Miller
Kevin J. Schreiber
3. Please forward this email to every family you know who is not a member of HSLDA and urge them to contact members of the committee about this bill.
Please call or email today!
Dewitt T. Black, III HSLDA Senior Counsel
P.S. We greatly value you and your support—it is a privilege to serve you! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support for our work enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>
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