State Rep. Bernadine Kennedy Kent (D-Columbus) today announced that House Bill 137, legislation to require peace officers to report child abuse or neglect, was passed unanimously by the House Criminal Justice Committee.


“As a legislature, one of our main goals is protecting Ohioans, especially our most vulnerable,” said Rep. Kennedy Kent. “I’m glad this bill inspired such bipartisan support, and I truly believe this legislation will help ensure children’s safety.”


Currently, forty states explicitly designate law enforcement officers as mandated reporters. Nine other states, as well as Puerto Rico, mandate that all residents report child abuse and neglect, as opposed to only a specific few. Ohio is the only state to not make officers mandated reporters.


“I truly believe this bill will provide another layer of protection sorely needed in the wake of the statewide opioid crisis, Ohio’s infant mortality rate, and child sex trafficking,” added Kennedy Kent.


House Bill 137 now awaits a vote on the House floor.

 
 
 
  
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