Protect the innocent by backing SB 109
When we hear of an injustice, our first thoughts or words are usually, “Someone needs to do something.” Sometimes we do have the power to “do something,” the power to help protect the innocent. Sometimes all it takes to make a difference is signing a petition.
The Jennings Daily News has been reporting on the Spaetgens family from Iota and their efforts to strengthen child abuse investigations since late 2012. Along with District 25 Sen. Dan “Blade” Morrish, the Spaetgens are hoping to change current state laws with Senate Bill 109, to provide for additional medical exams, if needed or requested by a child’s parent or caretaker, when a person is accused of abuse. Right now, the opinion of a mandatory reporter is enough to launch a state abuse investigation. As had happened with the Spaetgens, this sometimes causes children to be taken from innocent parents or families to utilize childcare supervisors during investigations. Requiring an additional exam if requested could mean the difference between concretely proving that child abuse took place and tearing apart an innocent family.
The law was not on the Spaetgens’ side when they lost their young daughter, but we have the power to change that.
The family is looking for supporters willing to sign petitions in favor of SB 109. While some in the public may have had the opportunity to sign hard copies of the petition, an online petition is also available at https://www.change.org/petitions/senate-bill-109-to-ensure-better-investigations-by-mandatory-reporters-on-all-abuse-claims. The process takes about five minutes and asks basic information like your first and last name and mailing address to confirm you are an eligible voter.
The more signatures SB 109 receives, the more support lawmakers will give the bill. This is a law that will affect all of Louisiana, not only Jeff Davis Parish; furthermore, parents in other states are seeking similar legislation. Even if you or someone you know lives out of state, show Louisiana lawmakers that you are watching what is taking place with our laws.
Please do something to help protect our good parents and their children. All you need to do to help prepare a better future for them is to sign your name.
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