Is it Faith? Or is it Child Neglect?

Eleven year old Daughter is ill, finally unable to walk or talk.

Wisconsin Mother and Father, in accordance with their religion, pray for her.

They don’t take her to a doctor or hospital.

Daughter dies from complications of diabetes.

Mother and Father are convicted of second degree reckless homicide.

They are sentenced to thirty days’ confinement for six years and ten years’ probation.

They are also court-ordered to take their other two children to doctors for treatment if injured or ill, and to have periodic wellness checks for the children.

Is Mother’s and Father’s conduct protected religious conduct, or is it child abuse or neglect?

That may not have been clear enough under Wisconsin law.

And so some changes and clarifications are in the works.

Parents should be held to a standard of reasonableness in caring for their children’s health and welfare.

If parents fail to take reasonable measures to provide for their children’s health and welfare, the state can remove the children and intervene in their care… And may prosecute the parents.

The parents’ can tell their side of the story to the jury. But the jury decides how reasonable their actions are.

Read more in this New York Times article: Wisconsin Couple Sentenced in Death of Their Sick Child and this [Milwaukee] Journal Sentinel editorial: Bill would protect children, liberties.