Becker: Parents' rights won in governor's veto

Thursday, April 26, 2018
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

children playing on swingThe governor of Nebraska is receiving cheers and jeers after vetoing a controversial measure.

The bill in question is LB 998 or "The Collaborative School Behavioral and Mental Health Program."

According to Leroy Becker, of Parental Rights Nebraska, the measure would place social workers in public schools. The issue, he says, is they would screen students they determine are in need of public services and do so without parental knowledge.

The bill did not describe any provisions for notifying parents, he says. 

"We believe that parents should have the fundamental right," Becker tells OneNewsNow, "to direct the health care and especially the mental health care of their children."

In remarks published by the Lincoln Journal Star, state Sen. Lynne Walz said she was appalled by the veto, saying the bill had the support of behavioral and mental health experts, school administrators, teachers, social workers and parents.

"I am in shock that a program intended to help children, with no cost to the state, would draw this level of opposition," Walz said.  

In a letter to state lawmakers, however, Gov. Pete Ricketts said he shares concern about the underlying problem LB 998 is trying to address.

The legislation, Ricketts said, creates a "one-size-fits-all" program and a state fund that merely accepts private donations and passes those private dollars on to a political subdivision.

"LB 998 is not needed," the governor added.

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