Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Hobbs bill to make Child Protective Services more efficient passes House vote

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – A bill sponsored by Rep. Katie Hobbs, D-Phoenix (District 15), that will help make Child Protective Services more efficient, passed a full House vote today.

“This is one less step of red tape so that we can protect the children of Arizona,” Hobbs said.

HB 2794 would eliminate the need for the Department of Economic Security to establish “review teams” to determine whether a child should be removed from a home because of abuse or neglect.

“This bill helps CPS be more efficient by cutting out a duplicative step of the process to determine if a child needs to be removed from a person’s custody,” Hobbs said.

Since 1998, juvenile courts have held preliminary protective hearings in cases involving the removal of children from abusive situations. This hearing eliminates the need for the review team. CPS caseloads are already 50 percent over the recommended limit and this step causes more delays in providing services and keeping children safe.

“Removal review teams, which are unnecessary because of the process juvenile courts have in place, make it harder for children to be protected from abusive and neglectful environments,” Hobbs said. “By eliminating these teams, CPS will be better able to get children out of unhealthy environments and into welcoming and safe homes.”

The bill passed by a vote of 48-9, and now goes to the Senate for consideration.


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