Republican Leader of the Education and Labor Committee Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA) issued the following statement after the House passed legislation that strengthens federal efforts to prevent and treat child abuse and neglect. The Stronger Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (Stronger CAPTA) provides greater funding and establishes new tools to combat the rising rates of child maltreatment over the past decade.
Republican Leader Foxx:"Child abuse is evil and has no place in our homes, schools, and communities. While devastating that this legislation is needed, we know school closures have increased the risk for child abuse and neglect, and mental health cases are on the rise among school-aged children. This heartbreaking issue demands immediate attention. Today’s bipartisan passage of the Stronger CAPTA focuses Congress’ efforts to see that no child experiences the dreadful impacts of neglect and abuse. Our colleagues on both sides of the aisle put in hard work to get this bill through the legislative process because of their strong commitment to protecting the most vulnerable among us."
Chairman Scott: "One of our most basic responsibilities as public servants is to protect children from the physical and emotional trauma of child abuse and neglect. Unfortunately, at the beginning of the last decade, we saw a disturbing rise in rates of child maltreatment, which coincided with the devastating opioid epidemic. Now, the COVID-19 pandemic is only reaffirming the urgent need to address this growing crisis. Stronger CAPTA is the bipartisan solution we need to not only better treat child abuse and neglect but prevent maltreatment from happening in the first place. Our bipartisan effort to pass this bill again this year demonstrates that—no matter our party affiliations—we can all agree that Congress must do more to support children and families."
The Stronger Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act:
Strengthens the focus on prevention by helping states to (1) build networks of cost-effective and locally driven services that prevent child abuse and strengthen families and (2) provide critical services to families facing challenging circumstances during the COVID-19 pandemic;
Increases funding to support child protective services agencies that were overburdened with increased caseloads during the opioid epidemic and now face challenges to safely supporting families due to the COVID-19 pandemic;
Improves the sharing and quality of data to better understand the scope of child abuse and neglect and ensure victims do not fall through the cracks; and
Supports evidence-based strategies to treat and prevent child abuse and neglect.
For a fact sheet on the Stronger CAPTA, click here.
For the bill text of the Stronger CAPTA, click here.