NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The parents of a little girl and boy murdered by their nanny are backing a new law to prevent people from providing phony job references.
As CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez reported, the law would make lying about job experience in childcare a felony crime.
From day one, Yoselyn Ortega was never the nanny she claimed to be, Sanchez reported. Kevin and Marina Krim testified in court they hired Ortega based on her sister’s claims that she had outside childcare experience plus a glowing reference from a former employer. It was only after Ortega savagely murdered Lulu and Leo Krim the parents would learn all of that was a lie.
Now, the Krims are pushing new legislation to protect families looking for childcare.
“We also believe that parents and caregivers should be protected from people who would harm them with their evil and lies. We were deceived and betrayed by the defendant’s family, who remain wholly unaccountable for their role in the murders of our children,” Kevin posted on Facebook.
As it turns out, Ortega had never worked as a nanny and her “reference” was a bogus recommendation written by a niece.
Assemblyman Steve Otis is co-sponsoring “Lulu and Leo’s Law,” which he believes could have prevented their murders by discouraging Ortega’s family to lie about her.
“This would not have been possible without a total fabrication of the background information of the caregiver in this case,” he said. “It’s unacceptable, and we have to do something about it.”
LuLu and Leo’s Law would make it illegal for people to give false references for nannies or babysitters. Someone who provides a fake reference could get locked up if the nanny commits a crime against the family he or she works for.
Parents and nannies Sanchez heard from Thursday had mixed opinions.
“The nanny has to be responsible for this particular case, I would think, not necessarily the references,” parent Eliza Catchlove said.
“If you decide to withhold information or outright lie, there will be some sort of penalty. I feel like that’s legitimate, I think it’s valid,” said Coura Niang.
“I’m not sure how harsh the penalty should be. I don’t think it should be jail time,” nanny Kendra Brody said.
Otis plans to introduce the bill this week and hopes Lulu and Leo’s Law will pass by the session this June. State Sen. Andrew Lanza, of Staten Island, is also sponsoring the bill in the Senate.