(April 19) – A bill to create a statewide child abuse reporting hotline passed the House today by a vote of 42 to 21.
HB13-1271, sponsored by Reps. Jonathan Singer (D-Longmont) and Jenise May (D-Aurora), requires the Department of Human Services to establish a steering committee to develop an implementation plan for a statewide child abuse reporting hotline. The hotline is required to operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and be operational and publicized statewide no later than Jan. 1, 2015. Currently, there is no uniform reporting system and the process changes by county.
“This is the result of a wide collaboration by all who care about the safety of our children,” Rep. May said. “The hotline will make it easier for a person to report child abuse and bring better outcomes for our children.”
A statewide hotline was one of the proposals the governor made after a series of reports last year by The Denver Post and 9News that showed a failure of the child welfare system in implementing uniform procedures for investigating neglect and abuse allegations.
“Our frontline workers deserve the best technology and tools, our citizens deserve the best services and support, and our children deserve a chance to grow up,” Rep. Singer said. “This is one more tool to catch offenders and save children.”