SANTA FE – Senate Bill 107, sponsored by Senator Crystal Diamond(R-Elephant Butte) and Senator Daniel Ivey-Soto (D-Albuquerque), today passed the Senate with unanimous, bipartisan support.The bill changes the timeline for the Children, Youth and Families Department (CYFD) to file a petition from two days from the date of the petition to not more than three days after the child is taken into custody.
“I want to thank my colleagues and CYFD for working with me on this important bill,” said Senator Diamond. “We must ensure that victims of repeat abusers are given highest priority for probable cause removal hearings and that there are timely custody hearings for all children who have been abused or neglected.”
Senate Bill 107 further stipulates that in cases when a child has been returned to CYFD custody within six months, children should not be released from department custody until department executive managers, in consultation with the children’s court managing attorney, determine what is in the best interest of the child.
“This bill clearly does not solve all the problems at CYFD, but it does address one important component,” added Senator Ivey-Soto. “Innocent and endangered children deserve the highest priority from the department and our judiciary, and this bill is a step in that direction.”