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Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare

Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare

Criminal Neglect Penalties for Unreasonable Restraint of Children added to the Vulnerable Adult Bill

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S.F. 1586/ H.F. 1945 was revised on April 9, 2012, adding additional penalties for parents, guardians or caregivers who confine or restraint children which results in demonstrable bodily harm. Demonstrable bodily harm is bodily harm capable of being perceived by a person other than the victim. These penalties include up to 2 years in prison, or a fine up to $4,000, or both. This bill is expected to be signed by Governor Dayton in the next week. child abuse 4-10-12.png

The bill is inspired by the case in Dexter, Minnesota where a couple was convicted of chaining their 5-year-old son to his crib and withholding food from his older brother. Under current law, the couple could only be charged with a gross misdemeanor for chaining their son. But if someone had done the same thing to someone else's child, the person could be charged with a felony. Cited from The Post Bulletin, Rochester MN.

How might these criminal penalties affect families in the child protection system?

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1 Comment

This changes including the additional penalties and fees to parents who are restraining their children, are according to me, a necessity. A parent is not only the person who brings a life to that world, or biological figure, but also,someone who needs to take proper care and teach him on morals. I do find the behaviour of parents who are not able to perform that, but on the contrary, are harming to their children for really liable to a fine at least.

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