2007 Legislative Accomplishments

by Rep. Susan Westrom

Westrom, Susan
HB 234: HFA(1), 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 16, 23, 70, 74, 82, 94, 109, 124, 125*, 141, 175*, 191, 219, 238*, 239*, 241*, 243, 273, 299*, 337, 339, 346, 362, 366, 373, 386, 389, 406*, 460, 480, 520, 570*
HCR 117*, 148
HJR 13, 15, 137*

HR 17, 20, 21, 49*, 62, 132, 166, 182, 209, 219, 221*, 241, 248

HR 49 –This resolution urged the Cabinet for Health and Family Services and the Federal Government to include Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease in their chronic disease initiatives, including screening, smoking cessation, and managing diseases.

HJR 13 – As unbelievable as it may sound, Kentucky has joined other states in setting adoption quotas for social workers working with Child Protective Services to enable them to  “steal children”  for a federal subsidy to supplement the Cabinet’s budget.  This very disconcerting effort became widely known in March, 2007 when the Office of Inspector General did an investigation into adoption and child removal practices in Hardin County, Kentucky.  The landslide of complaints and alarm continues through this day.  As a result, HJR was filed with the intent of the Office of the Ombudsman to track and report trends of citizen complaints about child protection programs and services.  The intent is to identify early when a county is in crisis and when the “safety net” is no longer in place for the families and children served under Child Protective Services.  You will find several revealing articles on the Westrom website which continue to report ongoing alarming trends.

SB43—Sponsored by Senator David Boswell  and passed by Rep Westrom in the House, SB43 further documents, tracks and provides services for victims of the international scandal of Human Trafficking. SB43 provides civil penalties to the perpetrator and creates new offenses relating to the exploitation of persons to criminalize forced labor or services.  Human trafficking will now be a felony punishable by 5 to 10 years in prison.  The crime would carry a 10 to 20 year sentence if the victim was injured.  Someone trafficking a minor also would face stiffer penalties including 20 years to life imprison if the youngster is injured.

SB111  Delayed Jury Duty for Nursing Mothers.

Senator Tom Buford and I often file companion pieces of legislation which we feel is very important to the Commonwealth to enhance the chance of passage.  This was the Senate companion bill to my HB241, which permits judges to delay jury duty for mothers who are breastfeeding, until the mother is no longer breastfeeding.  This was the third or fourth year the bill was filed and advocates worked tirelessly to help us see it pass both chambers.  SB111/HB241 was signed by the Governor on March 23, 2007.