STAND. COM. REP. NO. 988-20
RE: H.B. No. 1942
Honorable Scott K. Saiki
Speaker, House of Representatives
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2020
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Judiciary, to which was referred H.B. No. 1942, H.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO CHILD ABUSE REPORTING,"
begs leave to report as follows:
(1) Adding members of the clergy, commercial computer technicians, commercial film and photographic print or image processors, and certain administrators and employees of organizations who have direct contact with or supervision of children to the categories of persons who are required to report child abuse and neglect to the Department of Human Services or police; and
(2) Providing a safe harbor through December 31, 2020, for reporting by clergy of previously unreported known or suspected child abuse that did not arise during a penitential communication.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from Hawaii Youth Services Network, IMUAlliance, Parents And Children Together, and one individual. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from the Department of Human Services. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Office of the Public Defender.
Your Committee finds that professionals who work with or come into regular contact with children have an essential role in the protection of children. Amending the State's child abuse and neglect mandated reporting law to include members of the clergy, commercial computer technicians, commercial film and photographic print or image processors, and certain other administrators and employees as mandated reporters of suspected child abuse and neglect will ensure the Department of Human Services and county police departments are able to quickly identify, investigate, and intervene in suspected cases of child abuse or neglect.
Your Committee has amended this measure by:
(1) Clarifying that an attorney who has an attorney-client relationship is excluded from the child abuse and neglect mandated reporting requirements; and
(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 1942, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 1942, H.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary,
CHRIS LEE, Chair