Call me stupid, but I thought that county and city laws could not be less restrictive than state or federal laws.  They can be more restrictive, but not less so.  Given this, I was surprised to see that the Child Protection Screening Criteria from Morrison County Social Services was changed so that children ages 6 and under left alone for more than 2 hours should be reported for potential neglect, rather than the state’s age criteria of 7 and under.  (See “County approves preliminary levy/budget,” Morrison County Record, September 16, 2007)  Frankly, I think both ages are too young, and would set the age at 10 or 12, but that’s just me.

Apparently screening criteria are not laws, but they certainly set into motion a range of legal procedures.  Can someone explain to me why Social Services thinks it’s okay to leave Morrison County children ages 6 and under unsupervised for any length of time, other than for the convenience of adult caregivers?  Who is Social Services supposed to be protecting?

Swimming in circles,

Phineas F. A. Pickerel

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