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1987 Minnesota Session Laws

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                         Laws of Minnesota 1987 

                         CHAPTER 91-S.F.No. 409 
           An act relating to child abuse reporting; requiring 
          mandated reporters to report certain past occurrences 
          of child abuse or neglect; requiring the commissioner 
          to investigate reports of past occurrences of child 
          abuse or neglect in a facility; amending Minnesota 
          Statutes 1986, section 626.556, subdivisions 3, 6, and 
          10b. 
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 626.556, 
subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 3.  [PERSONS MANDATED TO REPORT.] (a) A professional 
or the professional's delegate who is engaged in the practice of 
the healing arts, social services, hospital administration, 
psychological or psychiatric treatment, child care, education, 
or law enforcement who knows or has reason to believe a child is 
being neglected or physically or sexually abused, or has been 
neglected or physically or sexually abused within the preceding 
three years, shall immediately report the information to the 
local welfare agency, police department or the county sheriff.  
The police department or the county sheriff, upon receiving a 
report, shall immediately notify the local welfare agency orally 
and in writing.  The local welfare agency, upon receiving a 
report, shall immediately notify the local police department or 
the county sheriff orally and in writing.  The county sheriff 
and the head of every local welfare agency and police department 
shall each designate a person within their agency, department, 
or office who is responsible for ensuring that the notification 
duties of this paragraph and paragraph (b) are carried out.  
Nothing in this subdivision shall be construed to require more 
than one report from any institution, facility, school or agency.
    (b) Any person may voluntarily report to the local welfare 
agency, police department or the county sheriff if the person 
knows, has reason to believe, or suspects a child is being or 
has been neglected or subjected to physical or sexual abuse.  
The police department or the county sheriff, upon receiving a 
report, shall immediately notify the local welfare agency orally 
and in writing.  The local welfare agency, upon receiving a 
report, shall immediately notify the local police department or 
the county sheriff orally and in writing. 
    (c) A person mandated to report physical or sexual child 
abuse or neglect occurring within a licensed facility shall 
report the information to the agency responsible for licensing 
the facility.  A health or corrections agency receiving a report 
may request the local welfare agency to provide assistance 
pursuant to subdivisions 10, 10a, and 10b. 
    (d) Any person mandated to report shall, upon request to 
the local welfare agency, receive a summary of the disposition 
of any report made by that reporter, unless release would be 
detrimental to the best interests of the child.  Any person who 
is not mandated to report shall, upon request to the local 
welfare agency, receive a concise summary of the disposition of 
any report made by that reporter, unless release would be 
detrimental to the best interests of the child. 
    (e) For purposes of this subdivision, "immediately" means 
as soon as possible but in no event longer than 24 hours.  
     Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 626.556, 
subdivision 6, is amended to read: 
    Subd. 6.  [FAILURE TO REPORT.] A person mandated by this 
section to report who knows or has reason to believe that a 
child is neglected or physically or sexually abused, as defined 
in subdivision 2, or has been neglected or physically or 
sexually abused within the preceding three years, and fails to 
report is guilty of a misdemeanor. 
     Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 626.556, 
subdivision 10b, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 10b.  [DUTIES OF COMMISSIONER; NEGLECT OR ABUSE IN A 
FACILITY.] (a) The commissioner shall immediately investigate if 
the report alleges that: 
    (1) a child who is in the care of a facility as defined in 
subdivision 2 is neglected, physically abused, or sexually 
abused by an individual in that facility, the commissioner shall 
immediately investigate or has been so neglected or abused by an 
individual in that facility within the three years preceding the 
report; or 
    (2) a child was neglected, physically abused, or sexually 
abused by an individual in a facility defined in subdivision 2, 
while in the care of that facility within the three years 
preceding the report.  
    The commissioner shall arrange for the transmittal to the 
commissioner of reports received by local agencies and may 
delegate to a local welfare agency the duty to investigate 
reports.  In conducting an investigation under this section, the 
commissioner has the powers and duties specified for local 
welfare agencies under this section.  The commissioner or local 
welfare agency may interview any children who are or have been 
in the care of a facility under investigation and their parents, 
guardians, or legal custodians. 
    (b) Prior to any interview, the commissioner or local 
welfare agency shall notify the parent, guardian, or legal 
custodian of a child who will be interviewed in the manner 
provided for in subdivision 10d, paragraph (a).  If reasonable 
efforts to reach the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of a 
child in an out-of-home placement have failed, the child may be 
interviewed if there is reason to believe the interview is 
necessary to protect the child or other children in the 
facility.  The commissioner or local agency must provide the 
information required in this subdivision to the parent, 
guardian, or legal custodian of a child interviewed without 
parental notification as soon as possible after the interview.  
When the investigation is completed, any parent, guardian, or 
legal custodian notified under this subdivision shall receive 
the written memorandum provided for in subdivision 10d, 
paragraph (c). 
    Sec. 4.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
    Sections 1 and 3 are effective August 1, 1987.  Section 2 
is effective August 1, 1987, and applies to offenses committed 
on or after that date. 
    Approved May 12, 1987

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