Prohibits the alleged child victim of a child abuse report from being interviewed in the presence of any other person named in the report.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the social services law, in relation to interviewing a potentially abused child
PURPOSE: Amend the social services law such that the subject of a report of suspected child abuse shall not be required to be interviewed in the presence of any other person named in the report.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of the bill amends the social services law such that an alleged victim of child abuse shall not be interviewed in the presence of any other person named in the report.
Section 2 of the bill is the effective date.
JUSTIFICATION: Awareness of the epidemic of child abuse has come a long way since section relevant sections of the social services law were enacted. The most recent literature estimates that child maltreatment costs the country a total lifetime economic burden resulting from new cases of fatal and nonfatal treatment of $124 billion using 2008 figures.
Western New York experienced a horrific beating death of a 10 year old child by his step father. on April 17, 2012. According to the attorneys representing the child, the investigation of the initial Child Protection Services Report of excessive corporal punishment was referred to a "differential response" team which, according to its protocol, interviewed the child in the presence of the alleged perpetrator, his step-father. The step-father was even relied upon to translate between the investigator and the child's mother. Under these circumstances, the child recanted his initial claim that his stepfather had beaten him. The step-father murdered the child after the initial report was filed with CPS. This death was most likely preventable had a different standard for investigating the CPS reports been required.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New Bill.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Minimal. The Child and Family Services department will continue to conduct interviews of alleged child abuse, but be required to find a safe place in which to interview the victim away from the alleged perpetrator.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6326 IN SENATE January 14, 2014 ___________Introduced by Sen. MAZIARZ -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Children and Families AN ACT to amend the social services law, in relation to interviewing a potentially abused child THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 6 of section 424 of the social services law, as amended by chapter 602 of the laws of 2008, is amended to read as follows: (a) upon receipt of such report, commence or cause the appropriate society for the prevention of cruelty to children to commence, within twenty-four hours, an appropriate investigation which shall include an evaluation of the environment of the child named in the report and any other children in the same home and a determination of the risk to such children if they continue to remain in the existing home environment, as well as a determination of the nature, extent and cause of any condition enumerated in such report and the name, age and condition of other chil- dren in the home, and, after seeing to the safety of the child or chil- dren, forthwith notify the subjects of the report and other persons named in the report in writing of the existence of the report and their respective rights pursuant to this title in regard to amendment. NOTWITHSTANDING ANY OTHER PROVISION OF LAW, THE ALLEGED CHILD VICTIM OF SUCH REPORT SHALL NOT BE INTERVIEWED IN THE PRESENCE OF ANY OTHER PERSON NAMED IN THE REPORT. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD13168-03-3