LANSING, Mich., Nov. 1, 2022 — State Rep. Kevin Hertel (D-St. Clair Shores) marked today as the day that his signature legislation protecting children from serial abusers went into effect. Wyatt’s Law is the result of years of work and advocacy after Wyatt, the son of local mom Erica Hammel, was the victim of abuse at the hands of another woman she didn’t know was a convicted abuser.
“I am proud to live in a state where this law exists, and it starts today. After a lot of hard work and dedication, this bill is finally on the books and implemented in our state,” Hertel said. “The health and well-being of the people I represent is my top concern. Michigan children, communities and families will be safer because of Wyatt’s Law.”
Hertel advocated for the passage of Wyatt’s Law since his first term in the Legislature. It is part of a large bipartisan bill package, House Bills 5274, 5275, 5276, 5277, 5778, 5279, 5280, 5534, and 5594. The legislation creates an electronic case management system to track confirmed cases of child abuse and neglect. In addition, the law modifies the procedure to amend or expunge inaccurate reports of abuse or neglect, ensuring the list accurately tracks offenders. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed the bills into law earlier this year.
“It is with the hard work of so many people, both across the aisle and across many years, that this law takes effect. I am so grateful to have been able to do my part,” Hertel said. “I also wanted to take a moment to say thank you to Erica Hammel, Wyatt’s mother, who worked tirelessly for change and a better and more secure Michigan.”