(NASHVILLE) — State Representative Mary Littleton (R-Dickson) today introduced legislation that improves reporting related to instances of child abuse and neglect in Tennessee.
House Bill 2192 requires law enforcement booking agencies to inquire if an arrested person has children and to determine the health status of the children in question.
Additionally, it empowers the booking agency to establish procedures in order to more effectively communicate with the Department of Children’s Services (DCS) so that the department can then conduct a welfare check on a child once they have been notified by the agency.
One of the goals of House Bill 2192 is to reduce occurrences of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) in children, which have been shown to negatively impact a child’s brain-building process.
ACEs include physical, emotional or sexual abuse; children who experience four or more ACEs are at a higher risk for poor outcomes later in life including chronic illness, poverty, depression, and addictive behaviors.
“We must do all we can in order to ensure that our children have the opportunity to grow up in environments where they can thrive,” said Representative Littleton. “I am honored to sponsor passage of this initiative because it promotes the health and safety of our youngest citizens so that they can achieve their goals and dreams in life.”
House Bill 2192 is expected to be heard by members of the House Civil Justice Subcommittee on Wednesday, February 28, 2018. For more information about the measure, please click here.
Mary Littleton is a member of the House State Government Committee and Subcommittee, as well as the House Criminal Justice Committee. Littleton lives in Dickson and represents House District 78, which includes Cheatham and part of Dickson Counties. She can be reached by email at [email protected] or by calling (615) 741-7477.