News Release


DATE: February 18, 1999

CONTACT STEVE SCHMIDT AT 619-531-4766 or 619-206-9108


Jacob & Zettel Team Up To Empower Parents

SAN DIEGO - Assemblywoman Charlene Zettel (R-Poway) and San Diego County Supervisor Dianne Jacob today announced the introduction of Assembly Bill 458, known as *Oliver's Law.* The introduction of this measure was spurred by the tragic death of 13-month old Oliver Smith, allegedly at the hands of his day care provider. Oliver's mother, Audrey Amaral was also on hand to speak in support of the legislation.

"Oliver's Law provides an invaluable tool to parents. It is my hope that this law will help all California's parents keep their children safe by making educated and informed decisions about those who care for our children," said Zettel author of AB 458.

Jacob, who initiated the Board of Supervisors' request to Zettel to carry the bill, said "I'm pleased to join Assemblywoman Zettel and Oliver's mother, Audrey, today to help get the word out to parents that they can review a licensed provider's files with the State. Our goal is to assure that no parent in San Diego County, or throughout California, has to suffer the same tremendous loss that Audrey has suffered."

Under the proposed law, every childcare referral agency would be required to directly inform parents of the availability of information on any of the County's 5,700 licensed day-care facilities. This information will enable parents to make better, more informed decisions about those who care for their children. A repeated failure to comply with this requirement by a referral agency would be considered a misdemeanor.

Oliver Smith died at a licensed family day care home. The former operator of the home, Manjit Basuta, is accused in Oliver's death and her trial is scheduled to begin on May 11, 1999.