Leslie Spoltore in our Wilmington office recently wrote about Delaware’s passing a children’s “Bill of Rights” into law. This law specifically addressed what children are to receive while under the care of the Department of Services for Children, Youth, and Their Families. I suspect that many of these rights already exist in whole or part in other sections of Delaware Code, but by condensing them down to a single law and, perhaps more importantly, allow the child the right to address any violation of these rights through equitable relief with the court.
Pennsylvania revamped its Child Protective Services Law effective January 1 of this year in a reaction to the administrative and functional vulnerabilities and ambiguities cases like that of convicted abuser Jerry Sandusky exposed in the existing code.
There cannot be too many checks and balances in place when it comes to the care of children. I think Delaware’s Bill of Rights for children is good law combining the symbolic act of distilling protective service concepts into a “bill of rights” along with some functional, helpful methods for a child to obtain relief when those rights are violated.