Work Remains for PA Lawmakers on Child Protection Legislation

Dec 27, 2013

Work still remains for state lawmakers on child protection legislation, in spite of the slew of bills signed by the governor last week.

The 10 proposals are the result of more than a year of work to tighten up the state’s child protection laws.

Central to the effort was a proposal to re-write the state’s legal definition of child abuse to make it less vague.

But Bucks County District Attorney Dave Heckler says there’s more to come.

"There is another as I understand it whole batch," he said. "To tell you the truth, we wrote one set of recommendations. They’ve been parsed out into a whole lot of bills. I would have to have a scorecard to know the players at this point."

Heckler chaired the Pennsylvania Task Force on Child Protection, created in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse case.

Lawmakers are still working on a proposal to clarify who is a mandated reporter – someone who must report suspected child abuse – and how they must report it.

The legislation already signed by Gov. Tom Corbett takes effect in 2015.