The Iowa Senate has approved legislation that would prevent thousands of names being removed from the state’s child abuse registry. Last July the Iowa Supreme Court ruled a mother should not have been placed on the registry for allowing her child to repeatedly spend time with the father, who was accused of domestic abuse.

Officials in the Department of Human Services say the ruling stemmed from an inconsistent definition of critical care or proper supervision, and feared it meant more 25,000 names on the registry would have to be removed from the registry. Senator Bill Doztler, a Democrat from Waterloo, worked on legislation.

“Iowa has probably more people on the child abuse registry than anyplace in the country,” Dotzler says, “and with this bill the Department of Human Services has agreed to work in the near term to try to help reduce the amount of individuals that get placed on there.” More than 50-thousand Iowans are currently on the child abuse registry.

The bill sets a December 15th deadline for the Department of Human Services to complete its review of the registry and propose changes in determining when someone’s name may be added to the list.