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Mandatory Reporters

Concerning enhancing mandatory reporting for people required to report child abuse, and, in connection therewith, making an appropriation.
2022 Regular Session
Children & Domestic Matters
Bill Summary

The bill creates the mandatory reporter task force (task force). The purpose of the task force is to analyze best practices and recommend changes to training materials and reporting procedures for people required by law to report child abuse or neglect.

The task force shall analyze issues, including :

  • The effectiveness of mandatory reporting and its relationship with systemic issues, including the disproportionate impact of mandatory reporting on families of color and under-resourced communities under-resourced communities, communities of color, and persons with disabilities;
  • The definition of "immediately" and how reporting time frames affect mandatory reporters from different professions;
  • Reporting time frames for mandatory reporters who are creating a safety plan for victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking to ensure the safety of the victim and the victim's family members while creating the safety plan;
  • Medical child abuse and the process to report medical child abuse;
  • A reporting process for 2 or more mandatory reporters to report child abuse or neglect who have joint knowledge or joint reasonable cause to make a report of child abuse or neglect; and
  • Whether institutions that employ mandatory reporters may develop procedures to assist mandatory reporters in meeting reporting requirements.

The task force may propose clarifications to the law to help implement its recommendations. The task force operates for 2 years. The task force shall submit a final report on its findings and recommendations on January 1, 2025, to the house of representatives public and behavioral health and human services committee and the senate health and human services committee, or their successor committees, the governor, and the department of human services.

The bill appropriates $97,500 from the general fund to the judicial department for use by the office of the child protection ombudsman for program costs.The bill also updates mandatory reporting requirements and procedures for people required to report child abuse or neglect (mandatory reporters). The updates include:

  • Changing the time frame for reporting child abuse or neglect from "immediately" to "within 24 hours";
  • Requiring reporting on unlawful sexual behavior;
  • Requiring employers to notify and to provide materials to their employees regarding mandatory reporter responsibilities; and
  • Changing the mental state of a person who violates the mandatory reporter provision from "willfully" to "knowingly".

(Note: Italicized words indicate new material added to the original summary; dashes through words indicate deletions from the original summary.)

(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)


Became Law


Bill Text