"On the surface, [universal mandatory reporting] sounds like an outstanding idea," she said, "but if you make something everybody's responsibility, it can end up becoming no one's responsibility."
About 105 bills on the reporting of suspected child abuse and neglect have been introduced in 2012 legislative sessions in 30 states and the District of Columbia, many of them directly in response to the Sandusky case. Legislation has since been enacted in 10 of those states, according to the latest NCSL tally.
Oregon, West Virginia, Virginia, and South Dakota are among states that expanded their list of professions that are mandatory reporters, while Indiana and Iowa are requiring schools to develop new policies and reporting procedures for responding to suspected child abuse.
Indiana, also in response to the Penn State scandal, passed legislation that requires the state to work with child sexual abuse experts to develop education materials, response policies, and reporting procedures on child sexual abuse. A new Iowa law requires schools to implement policy for employees in contact with children to report suspected physical or sexual abuse.