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Utah News

Big Boost For Child Abuse Prevention In COVID-19 Relief

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The latest COVID-19 relief package makes massive investments in child well-being.

 "We have not seen funding levels that are included in this bill for the community-based child abuse prevention programs in the entire history of that program, which is over 30 years old," Jim McKay said.

McKay, with the Children's Trust Fund Alliance, says the programs provide resources for families, helping to prevent abuse and neglect. And it's been a long time coming.

 
McKay, who is speaking at an Idaho-based conference on child abuse prevention this week, says the bill also invests in other provisions that prevent abuse and neglect, including 24 billion dollars to stabilize the child-care industry and 15 billion dollars in child-care subsidies.
The bill puts money in a broader prevention method with relief from economic stress, through the latest round of stimulus checks and increases to the child tax credit. McKay says this helps stabilize families.

 

"Providing that economic security is estimated to lift thousands and thousands of families out of poverty and could cut our child poverty rate in half as a nation," he said. "So those achievments are just so criticial in our fight against child abuse."

 
Usually held in Boise, the Strengthening Families Training Institute is meeting virtually this year. On Tuesday, McKay is talking about advocating for family-friendly policies.
 
"How families, individuals, advocates can lift up their voices based on their experiences, what's happening in their communities, what's happening in their lives, the challenges they're facing and how they can share those ideas and solutions with policymakers, other decision makers," he said.

The conference started Monday and runs through Wednesday.