Jan | 2017

17th

Tuesday

Dr Tom Brunner’s Urgent Call to IMMEDIATE Action: Oppose legislation that will ravage children who are the innocent victims of family conflict and seeks to invasively micromanage doctors

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If there is one thing I ask of you this year, it is to take a few minutes to act on this email!

RE: Bill HB2301

There are thousands of Arizona children who are currently suffering from inter-parent conflict so intense and entrenched that the court is called in by one of both parents to mediate.  You all know a child like this…

We all know it is the children who are the most vulnerable and psychologically damaged from this conflict.  A current piece of legislation is seeking to emasculate the role of neutral third party practitioners like myself who can give an objective, 3RD party opinion on how to help the children.   Child behavioral health advocates like myself are often the only people who can minimize the often permanent scar damage high conflict can reap.

For the reasons (and talking points) below, I ask you to take one minute to email your legislator and Senator IMMEDIATELY, to voice opposition to a bill that would send our legal system back to medieval times: 

Your legislators are: 

Todd A. Clodfelter

Email: http://www.azleg.gov/emailazleg/?legislatorId=1756

Phone: 602-926-4850

Kirsten Engel

Email: http://www.azleg.gov/emailazleg/?legislatorId=1759

Phone: 602-926-5178

Your senator is:

David Bradley

Email: http://www.azleg.gov/emailazleg/?legislatorId=1783

Phone: 602-926-5262

This bill also calls for actions that are likely illegal in nature , see item #2 below.  Specific reasons for my opposition are as follows, which you may use as talking points:

  1. Setting a maximum hourly fee:

Sets a maximum hourly fee for investigators at $50.

  • If anyone ultimately agrees to do this work, it would obviously be the most inexperienced and unqualified people making recommendations about the best interests of children.
  • The legislature would be supporting extreme regulation of our profession without any empirical or scientific support to do so.  It is clearly not a bill that is based on the principles of preventing overly invasive government influence.
  1. Insurance requirements:

Gives preference to investigators who accept insurance for their services, something that would likely be illegal because court-ordered evaluation services do not meet the criteria of medical necessity required for insurance coverage.

  1. Unnecessary hearing to determine the professional’s credentials:
  • Requires the court to hold a hearing to review potential investigator’s credentials, fees, number of current appointments, etc. This would force the parties to spend money for a presumably unnecessary hearing.
  • If the evaluator identifies during the evaluation that the evaluator can’t complete what needs to be done in 60 days and within 40 hours then there must be another presumably unnecessary hearing.

 

  1. Unrealistic timeframes to complete:

Requires evaluators to complete assignments within 60 days (sometimes this is simply not possible given the logistics of the process, such as obtaining collateral records for the evaluation).

 

  1. Unrealistic limitations on time spent:

Creates limitations to 40 hours (sometimes this is often not possible given the extent of the allegations made by Parents).

  • This is akin to the legislature regulating the tests and time a medical doctor can spend on treating a patient.
  • The legislature would be supporting extreme regulation of our profession without any empirical support to do so.

 


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