House Bill aimed at expanding child-protecting 'Haley’s Law’ - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

House Bill aimed at expanding child-protecting 'Haley’s Law’

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2008 1:02 am | Updated: 9:07 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

A child-protection statute known as "Haley's Law" could continue to expand more than two years after the death of 4-year-old Haley Gray of Scottsdale under a bill recently introduced in the Arizona Legislature.

HB2742 would call for the termination of Child Protective Services case worker if they fail to act on the welfare of a child who is the subject of an investigation of abuse or neglect.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Ray Barnes, R-Cave Creek, and is the second proposed law triggered by Haley's death.

Haley died in September 2005, four days after she was discovered locked inside an overheated vehicle naked and choking on her own vomit while her mother slept after a night of drinking.

The bill has not been assigned to a committee, so a date for its first hearing has not been scheduled, according to information from Barnes' office.

The bill comes several months after Gov. Janet Napolitano signed SB1158 into effect as Haley's Law.

It requires CPS to consider substantiated allegations of abuse or neglect committed in other jurisdictions when making certain decisions such as which parent to place children with in custody disputes.

"House Bill 2742 is an accountability law," said Haley's father, John Gray of Scottsdale, who drafted part of the bill's language.

"When CPS doesn't do what's in the best interest of the child, they will be held responsible instead of just being able to say, 'we were following our policies.' This law could be part of a change of mind set with CPS to do the right thing.," he said.

Gray fought CPS for custody of his three children for several months in 2006 before Haley's death.

Gray had provided documentation to CPS officials that chronicled alcohol and drug abuse his former wife, Celene Gray, experienced while she had custody of the children in Florida and in Arizona.

John Gray, who now has custody of his two sons, said he was inspired to push HB2742 through Barnes, who was a member of the House's Government Committee during a special hearing involving the 2007 deaths of Ariana Payne, 4, and her brother, Tyler Payne, 5, of Tucson.

  • Discuss

Facebook on Facebook

Twitter on Twitter

Google+ on Google+


Subscribe to via RSS

RSS Feeds

Your Az Jobs