Didn't Eric Cantor pull the same faux pas with the STOCK Act?
Here you have a bill that means well but has no clue on execution. For example, where is the reporting mechanism????
Seriously, is anyone even aware of the reporting protocol in child welfare? Allow me to explain.
The foster child or juvenile delinquent can file a complaint to the authority figure in charge of their well being. These complaints are then handled internally and wiped under the rug with heavy doses of psychotropic medication. If a child is lucky, a complaint can actually make it through the community mental health route, but because there is confidentiality in child welfare, the referral would go to BCAL or OCO.
Since the Child Welfare Training Institute omits mandatory reporting of Medicaid fraud, the likelihood of a child complaint making it to the Bureau of Children and Adult Licensing is slim to none.
Then you have Office of Children's Ombudsman where a complaint is screened in an initial call. If someone is lucky enough to get past the weed-out screening, there is a secondary level of screening. This is called the "Valid-Not-Open" determination which means there is a violation but the Office will not take it or refer it to law enforcement.
I shall presume there are the naysayers who will challenge me with the guardian ad litum or CASA. Seriously, these entities will only engage with the child as only they see fit. These persons do not advocate for the child to go back home or with relatives. They do not even support contact with family and friends.
Since this concept of children being brutally beaten, raped, murdered, drugged and tortured in foster care has just now come to light, will the state finally keep tally of the incidents? Will the state file public reports? Will the state contractually debar, license revocation or engage in recovery of funds that allowed for these aforementioned transgressions to occur? I will take it one better, will the state report federally?
Is the Attorney General to prosecute or represent the transgressors as they do have immunity in child welfare and are contracted state agents. Will the child have access to legal representation to file suit against those liable for their pain and suffering?
Did you even know that the Attorney General, Counties Prosecutors, guardians ad litum, and judges are not mandatory reporters?
If family members of children Legally Kidnapped do not even have a forum to file grievance when their child is being tortured in foster care, what makes any of you lawmakers think any action will be taken with the passage of this bill in this form. An original guardian of the child stands chance of being found non-compliant which are grounds for termination of parental rights if they file complaints that their child is being raped, tortured and drugged.
The entire system needs to be reformed but it must begin with the philosophy of the state: Poverty is not a crime and children are not usufruct.
How about creating a complaint system with mandatory reporting of Medicaid fraud to the Attorney General.
This bill will die in committee, but it is a start.