As most of us know, 2020 has been a dumpster fire of a year and as we wind down towards the close of this cluster of a mess year-end, lame-duck sessions of our elected officials are ongoing. Here in Michigan, it is no different than the rest of the country but the House of Representatives lost a week due to COVID concerns so they are cramming everything they can into this week.
One of the issues that the House could take up and send to the Governor’s desk would be a bill to protect kids who are in the crosshairs of being abused. The GOP-led Senate took the bill up last week and passed it with just one dissenting vote, something truly bipartisan in an age where that is as rare as a Detroit Lions playoff appearance.
Let me break down what EXACTLY this law does.
Erica Hammel’s son Wyatt was shaken so badly by her ex-husbands than idiotic girlfriend, that she damaged Wyatt’s delicate one-year-old brain. A fully healthy and normal child at the time now has permanent brain damage from this truly evil person. You may think this was just a once in a lifetime event for this moron but unfortunately, you would be wrong.
This woman had just weeks earlier plead guilty to harming other kids. Erica had that mother’s intuition thing going about this woman but had no way to confirm if her suspicion was correct. If there had been a public database where people who had to plead or were found guilty of harming children existed at that time, she could have found out this woman was on it and protected her infant son.
That is what Erica and her sister in arms Christyne, are fighting for right now in Lansing. Simply put, just a database where people who are GUILTY (not accused) of harming children are listed so parents can make sure their children are not around child abusers.
They currently are spending their time sitting outside the House chambers politely asking to talk to any member of the House to ask for their support SB 289 which has been dubbed “Wyatt’s Law” in honor of Erica’s son who was needlessly abused.
Speaker of the House Chatfield is termed out and will be leaving his office on December 31st. I truly hope and pray he has the courage to do what is right and follow the lead of his colleague Senate Majority Mike Shirkey and allow this bill to be voted on. Leader Shirkey gave an inspiring speech last week in his endorsement of this bill which you can view right here Shirkey Speech.
This is not only a good way to build a bit of a legacy while in public office but even more important, it is simply doing the right thing. Protecting the most innocent among us is a moral responsibility we all have.
Michigans elected officials, in a truly crap year, have a chance to show that this year was not all bad. The Republican leadership in the House can help end this year on a bit of a brighter note by making sure the tools are in place to help assure no other child has to go through what Wyatt did just seven years ago.
Pass Wyatts law to help take steps to ensure no other kids are harmed by the evil that walks among us.
Find out more about Wyatt’s Law right here.
Also here are some media hits that have been done highlighting this…
Also if you are so inclined please reach out to Speaker Chatfield and Chairman Filler who both have the power to discharge the bill for a vote anytime before lame-duck ends.
Speaker Lee Chatfield
Email: [email protected]
Rep. Graham Filler
Office: (517) 373-1778
Email: [email protected]