House passes Dent legislation related to childcare requirements and traumatic brain injury screening

On Tuesday, the state House of Representatives passed two bills sponsored by 13th District Rep. Tom Dent.

House Bill 1866 would give childcare centers until August 1, 2024, to comply with changes to professional development requirements being required of them.

“Childcare providers need more time to meet the education requirements being asked of them. Centers are struggling and if there are too many requirements, they might go underground or simply close their doors,” said Dent, R-Moses Lake. “Childcare is already very expensive. We need these centers to provide affordable childcare, and it is important to support them and make sure they succeed.”

House Bill 1605 would require traumatic brain injury (TBI) screenings for children entering the foster care system. The Department of Children, Youth, and Families would evaluate TBI screening tools to be included with other existing screens for children in out-of-home care. It would allow for treatment actions following identification of a TBI. The department would report back to the Legislature by Dec. 1, 2019.

“Foster youth sometimes exhibit symptoms of traumatic injury, and it is appropriate for these youth to have screenings so that steps can be taken earlier to address that injury,” said Dent. “The TBI screening process would be added on to a screening that already occurs for foster youth. We are not talking MRI's or other extensive testing. We are talking a series of questions and other basic screening tools that are also currently used in youth sports.”

Both bills passed the House unanimously. They now head to the Senate for consideration.

The 105-day legislative session is scheduled to adjourn April 28.


Washington State House Republican Communications