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Lobbyist Money Help  

Auditor calls for central listing of abusers

April 13, 2000
By: Michael Patrick Carney
State Capital Bureau

JEFFERSON CITY - A central registry of persons prohibited from providing care to children, the elderly or disabled persons would be created under a proposal announced Thursday by State Auditor Claire McCaskill.

"I think most Missourians would be shocked to know you could have your parental rights terminated and get hired the next day to teach kindergarten," McCaskill said, announcing the results of an audit of care giver screening conducted by her office.

Auditors found that information about disqualified persons is currently maintained in several different government databases, including within the Division of Aging, Department of Mental Health and Department of Family Services.

Each keeps a separate registry of persons found to have abused, neglected or stolen from patients or children.

This is inefficient, said McCaskill.

The data bank would be publicly available through a toll-free telephone number or the Internet.

McCaskill also urged lawmakers to make it illegal to hire a disqualified person as a care giver.

"If they are disqualified from working in one of these locations, then they should be disqualified from all," McCaskill said.

As far as one school board member knows, this has not been a problem within the school system.

"We as an organization have tried to support initiatives that would get people who have been convicted of a crime out of classrooms," said Lynnanne Baumgardner, a registered lobbyist for the Missouri School Boards Association and 11 year member of the Columbia School Board.

Baumgardner said that she was unsure why McCaskill would include schools, as failure to screen employees has not been a problem within the system.