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lawmakers rush to address child abuse

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Posted: Friday, February 14, 2014 9:00 pm

ALBUQUERQUE — The recent death of a 9-year-old New Mexico boy, whose mother was accused of kicking him to death after being investigated on at least three prior occasions, has lawmakers and other politicians scrambling to cast blame and line up behind proposed solutions in a state that ranks among the worst for child abuse deaths.

A flurry of bills and memorials introduced this session tackle everything from staffing problems and overwhelming caseloads within the state’s embattled child welfare agency to tougher penalties for abusers, more responsibility for citizens to report abuse and more power for child services workers to take immediate custody of children who show signs of abuse.

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