Harrisburg, Dauphin County—Legislation, introduced by Rep. Ron Marsico (R-Dauphin) to establish a child protection task force passed the House of Representatives today.
House Resolution 522 establishes a task force to conduct a thorough and comprehensive review to ascertain any inadequacies relating to the mandatory reporting of child abuse and restore public confidence in the ability of the Commonwealth to protect victims of child abuse. The task force will consist of 11 individuals knowledgeable and experienced in issues relating to child abuse or providing services to victims of child abuse, appointed within 25 days after the adoption of this resolution by both chambers.
“As you know, recent disturbing events in our state require a review of laws and procedures relating to the reporting of child abuse and the protection of the health and safety of children,” said Marsico. “A thorough review of these laws and procedures will help to ensure that the Commonwealth is able to adequately protect its children.”
Three members of the task force will be appointed by the president pro tempore of the Senate, in consultation with the majority leader and the minority leader of the Senate. Three members will be appointed by the speaker of the House of Representatives, in consultation with the majority leader and the minority leader of the House of Representatives. In addition to those six members, four members will be appointed by the governor.
“It is the responsibility of the Commonwealth to protect its citizens, particularly children,” said Marsico. “This resolution will ensure just that.”
The task force will:
• Examine and analyze the practices, processes and procedures relating to the
response to child abuse.
• Review and analyze law, procedures, practices and rules relating to the reporting of
• Hold public hearings for the taking of testimony and the requesting of documents.
• Accept and review written comments from individuals and organizations.
• Submit reports which will include recommendations to improve the reporting of child
abuse; implement any necessary changes in state statutes and practices, policies
and procedures relating to child abuse; and train appropriate individuals in the
reporting of child abuse.
House Resolution 522 passed by a vote of 191-5.