Several bills introduced in the Delaware General Assembly this week would ban people with a record of sexual crimes from working as nurses, dentists, or psychologists.
The bills build on previous legislation passed in the wake of the Bradley case. Former Lewes pediatrician Earl Bradley is accused of sexually molesting over 100 of his patients.
The new legislation would prevent anyone with a felony sexual conviction from getting a license in these medical fields, and would permanently revoke the license of anybody convicted of a felony sexual crime.
Representative Quinn Johnson, a Clayton democrat, supports the bills, calling them common sense restrictions for people who are going to be coming in close contact with citizens. “We don’t want them to take advantage of people when of course they are most vulnerable”, Johnson added
The proposed legislation would also make it an offense not to report child abuse.
Bonnie Osgood is the president of the Delaware Nurses Association. She says this part of the legislation will compel health care staff to come forward when they suspect abuse is happening: “A professional is responsible if they observe any kind of abuse, it supports your protection, you know, the fear of getting in trouble by reporting it.”
Delaware lawmakers passed sweeping changes concerning doctors last year, this legislation casts a wider net by including more medical professions.