“Today I’m signing four crucial bills that demonstrate our commitment to helping protect innocent children from the monsters that would do them harm,’’ Corbett said. “By our actions today, we are sending a message that we will not turn a blind eye to the abuse of children − those who we entrust with the care of our children must be held to a higher standard.”
The bills further expand those who are mandatory reporters and increases the penalties for mandatory reporters who fail to act. They also provide employment protection for people who make good-faith reports of abuse.
Corbett signed the bills at the Ambler Area YMCA.
“We can stop future acts of abuse,” Corbett said. “Today, we all stand together to say ‘no’ to crimes against our children.”
The bills signed by Corbett are:
- Senate Bill 21, which will go into effect Dec. 31. It expands the definition of a mandatory reporter to "anyone who comes in contact with a child, or is directly responsible for the care, supervision, guidance, or training of a child." It also clarifies the reporting process.
- House Bill 436, which goes into effect July 16. Among other things, it increase penalties for mandatory reporters who fail to report suspected abuse.
- House Bill 431, which goes into effect Dec. 31. The bill requires "Department of State licensing boards with jurisdiction over licensees identified as mandatory reporters to provide training and continuing education, approved by the Department of Public Welfare, on child abuse recognition and reporting."
- Senate Bill 33, which goes into effect Dec. 31 and provides job protections for mandatory reporters who in good faith report suspected abuse.