Dr. Connie L. Perry's letter to Wyoming Governor Geringer, March 17, 2002

Honorable Governor:

For the past ten years I have spent time in eastern europe, assisting with the process of defining and legislating child abuse laws. As a Family Therapist and former Child Protective Service worker, and pediatric nurse, I have seen enough to know that bruising is not necessary or even reasonable in the discipline of a small child.

As I have worked with these former Soviet countries, they often turn to me and ask "what are your laws, how does America prevent child abuse?" We are in the spotlight as much for the way we raise our children as we are for our wealth and arms leadership. I would hang my head in shame, if I knew that a fellow American would knowingly legislate harming one of these little ones.

Will it become agreeable to our lawmakers to hit someone on the street, just because they needed to be taught a lesson? How about taking care of our elderly, should we allow physical discipline when the aged act against the rules in their living situation? Why is it all right to bruise a child (or even hit a child for that matter) and not OK to inflict the same kind of 'punishment' on others?

Please, seriously consider vetoing Senate File 74. Wyoming doesn't need to inflict harm on its children.

Thank you,
Connie L. Perry PhD

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