Law would have blocked public information about child abuse

By Alexander Douglas |Staff Writer|

The California Department of Child Services attempted to pass the “trailer bill,” a bill that would prevent the public from looking at the case files of children who were killed by their parents’ boyfriends or girlfriends, according to the Los Angeles Times.

This bill would also negate the effects of a law passed in 2008 that allowed reporters to access social workers’ case notes among other files that allowed them to show social services’ inadequacies and negligence, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The bill was turned down unanimously by committee members who also gave the bill a negative review.

Reporter of the Bakersfield Californian, Lois Henry, said, “the State Department of Social Services planned to sneak a measure into a budget trailer bill that would have increased secrecy regarding the deaths of children who die of abuse or neglect.”

Congress had passed the 1974 Child Abuse and Treatment Act that defined child abuse but neglected important measures such as serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse or exploitation, or an act or failure to act which present a risk of serious harm, according to the Los Angeles Times.

“It’s sad to see how people don’t open their eyes to something small that could eventually turn into something big. They [child services] made it towards their benefit,” said student David Lopez.


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