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Lawmakers to take up single parenting/child abuse bill

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Lawmakers to take up single parenting/child abuse bill

By the WTMJ News Team. CREATED Mar 13, 2012

MADISON - Lawmakers in Madison were expected to take up a bill Tuesday that makes a state board list single parenting as a factor in child abuse.

Despite the backlash, the state senator who authored the bill is not backing down.

West Bend Republican State Senator Glenn Grothman says the bill is about education, while women's rights groups like Planned Parenthood call the bill irresponsible.

"I think most of those mothers would find they could do a better job if they were married to the father of their children," said Grothman in comments that made him the center of controversy.

The bill says it requires "the child abuse and neglect prevention board to emphasize nonmarital parenthood as a contributing factor to child abuse and neglect."

He cited in an interview with Newsradio 620 WTMJ what he claimed to be a number of statistics to show that a greater chance of child abuse exists in families with one parent raising a child instead of a married couple.

"An extreme example: if you are raised by your biological parents who are married as opposed to a single mom or single dad with their boyfriend/girlfriend, the second situation...20 times more likely to be a victim of sexual abuse," said Grothman.

Women's groups call it an education in sexist politics, since a majority of single parents are women.

Planned Parenthood has planned a protest on Tuesday at the Capitol.

"Women are really really getting fed up by all of this kind of legislation, they want it to stop and we're seeing them really raise up their voices," said Tanya Atkinson of Planned Parenthood.