Foster parents are pleading with state lawmakers to help them get help for the emotionally-battered children they take in.
A proposed bill would help kids who've faced abuse, like the recent situation in Mesa a few weeks ago where a 3-year-old was found duct-taped in a closet.
Experts said then that little girl will face a long, tough road ahead.
Brahm Resnik went to the Capitol to explore the backlogged bureaucracy that's hurting foster kids and their families right now, and to speak with three foster mothers who decided to come up with their own solution they call Jacob's law.
Anika Robinson, Angela Teachout and Susan Woodruff all know what it's like to wait forever for care for abused children.
Many of us were shocked to hear about the 3-year-old Mesa girl found duct-taped in a garbage bag in a closet, sitting in her own feces.
"I've had a case like that where a child was abused," Robinson, a foster and adoptive mother, said. She feared what might happen next.
"My first thought when I heard that was how incredibly sad," she said, "that that child, along with many other children, will have to sit there and wait up to 12 months to receive therapy."
Former foster mom Angela Teachout said the wait is "really difficult. It's not only hard on the child ... who's not receiving services, it's also hard on the whole entire family."
So, Anika, Angela and foster mom Susan Woodruff came up with a solution: Jacob's Law, named for Woodruff's 17-year-old adopted son.
"He has special needs and some severe mental illness due to the 10 years of trauma and abuse that he endured," Woodruff said.
A house committee Monday heard their bill to speed up state-paid behavioral health screening for foster children -- and put deadlines on therapy appointments.
"The way I look at it, it costs us $100 for one therapy appointment, or we can wait eight months when they get to that acute level, and now its costing us $100,000," Robinson said.
Woodruff would eventually pay for a lawyer to fight for Jacob's care.
"After getting a lawyer involved to get him the treatment he needed, he is actually doing better," she said.
Jacob's Law was unanimously approved by the House Children's Affairs committee. The Department of Child Safety plays a key role in getting care for foster kids, but we could not reach anyone there for comment.