BY JACK ELLIOTT JR.
April 27, 2014
JACKSON — Beginning July 1, Mississippi mental-health professionals will report if a committed person has children or has visitation with minors. The information goes the Mississippi Department of Human Services, the agency responsible for child-protection issues.
The new law is the third in three years enacted by lawmakers for the protection of children.
Rep. Nick Bain, D-Corinth, said the new law can help prevent children from being left in the care of a mentally ill parent. Bain, the lead sponsor of House Bill 810, describes it as another means of reporting possible child-endangerment situations.
It took a tragedy in Alcorn County to spur action.
Eleven-year-old Andrew Loyd, after whom the new law is named, was killed by his father, Billy Loyd, in their Farmington apartment in 2012. Bain said the killing occurred about three days after Loyd was released from the community mental-health center. Loyd took his own life after killing his son.
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