HARRISBURG – The House today unanimously passed legislation to protect military children and spouses from abuse involving a member of the U.S. Armed Forces, stated Rep. Todd Polinchock (R-Bucks), who authored the measure.
“Our military families deserve as much protection as anyone else in the Commonwealth. Sadly, these cases often go under the radar due to lack of reporting and communication between agencies,” Polinchock said. “This legislation would require better communication between child protective services and the service members command when an investigation is initiated. Through mandatory reporting of cases and open communication, we can better protect military family members who may be in unsafe conditions.”
House Bill 159
, formerly introduced as House Bill 1290, would require Child Protective Services (CPS) to immediately give notice to the Family Advocacy program by contacting the program’s representative for the Commonwealth or the service member’s assigned military installation, if the service member is the subject of a report due to an investigation.
Under current law, CPS is not required to identify military families in child abuse cases, nor report such cases to appropriate military authorities.
“As a veteran, I remain committed to supporting and protecting not only our military members but also the spouses and children of our servicemembers,” Polinchock said. “Thank you to my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for having this same goal.”
House Bill 159 now heads to the state Senate for consideration.
Representative Todd Polinchock
144th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Rene Morrow