Day of Reckoning Wednesday for Creepy School
The entire Montana House of Representatives will vote today on whether to regulate private religious schools, in the wake of a story by CNN exposing allegations of violence at Pinehaven School in the Flathead Valley.
Boarding schools claiming religious affiliation are not regulated in Montana. They don’t need to be licensed at all. Montana Democrats, responding to the Pinehaven and other such situations, are trying to change the law.
Sadly, last week House Bill 236, the bill to regulate such schools, died in committee when the GOP killed it on a party line vote. But there is still a ray of light. Because it is a revenue bill (since licensure fees would be coming in to Montana if these schools were properly licensed), there is one final opportunity for it to be revived, via a “blast motion.”
Rep. Ellie Hill and Rep. Jenny Eck will be attempting to “blast” the bill onto the House floor today, Wednesday March 13, so that it can be debated. They will need 60 votes to accomplish this. The vote will occur sometime sometime between 1pm and 3pm. You can watch online from anywhere in the U.S. here. (Click house floor session at 1pm.)
Reps. Hill and Eck need everyone who cares about the safety of children to send a message to republican legislators that they need to vote “yes” on what is called a “blast motion” so that this bill can have a full hearing on the House Floor. This means that many people as possible are going to need to call the capitol and leave a message with the House of Representatives asking them to stop the abuse of children and SUPPORT HB 236.
You can use this online message form or call 406.444.4800
We know that there are serious allegations that children are being abused, forced to convert to a new religion, or living in unsafe conditions at Pinehaven and at other unlicensed schools such as the Ranch 4 Kids outside of Libby. Not only did the republicans on House Judiciary refuse to do anything to help these children, committee chair Krayton Kerns actively worked to protect the abusers by cutting off public testimony to prevent your concerns from being heard.
Now is your chance to speak up for the people who were silenced by Kerns.
In case you missed it, here’s CNN segment about the abuse allegations and Kerns’ work to silence those who stood up for these kids.