Tracking Public Policy on Childhood abuse and Neglect


Dear Governor Bill Haslam,

My name is Louise Goodman and I am a Child Protective Services worker. I am writing regarding bill HB 0540 by Doss and SB 1159 by Hensley. According to Tennessee General Assembly (2017), the current law states that a parent or custodian of a child eight years of age or less commmits child endangerment who knowingly exposes such child to or knowinly fails to proect such child from abuse or neglect resulting in phsyical injury to the child. This bill was filed for introduction by Hensely on Feburary 9, 2017 to change the age from eight years old to ten years old. It was also filed to remove the requirement of physical injury from the bill as well. By Feburary 13, 2017, it had passed the first and second consideratiion and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee. From March 28, 2017 – April 17, 2017 is was on the calender for the Senate Judiciary Committee. On April 18, 2017, this bill was assigned to the General Subcommittee of Senate Judiciary Committee. I am unsure why there is such a young age limit on such an act. It is my opinon that if a child is under the age of 16 years old, a parent or custodian should be charged with child endangerment if that child is injuried in any way. Now, I also do not believe that it should only take into account physical injury. There are many children that face psychological injury and self injury when facing child abuse or neglect.