Vitter's View: Protecting our Children and Families
Protecting our children and families is one of our most important jobs as parents. But in today's day and age, the threats our children face are not always recognizable. Threats from predators who can enter our homes over the internet make our children more vulnerable than ever.
Last month, I offered an amendment to the budget resolution to fully authorize funding for the Adam Walsh Act, which strengthens federal laws to protect children from exploitation and abuse. No funding was included for Adam Walsh Act programs in the president's proposed budget for this year, but the Senate adopted my amendment to help ensure that these programs receive funding.
In 1981 John Walsh, of the popular crime information show Americas Most Wanted, and his wife experienced the biggest fear that a parent can imagine - their son Adam was abducted from a shopping mall and murdered. John Walsh has dedicated his time and effort to helping stop other terrible crimes, and specifically advocated for tougher laws to protect children from exploitation and abuse.
The Adam Walsh Act was named in honor of John Walsh's son. And programs authorized by the Adam Walsh Act include the regional Internet Crimes Against Children taskforces that will help prevent the exploitation of minors on the Internet and the National Child Abuse Registry that requires background checks on adoptive and foster parents and helps child protective services professionals ensure that children are not placed in potentially abusive situations. The bill also imposes mandatory minimum penalties for the most serious crimes against children.
We must do all we can to keep our children from harm's way, and this act helps us do just that. Strengthening programs that protect children and increasing criminal penalties for those who exploit them are exactly the types of steps I am working to advance on behalf of our families.
Please let me know about any issues of importance to you and your family by contacting me at any of my state offices or in my Washington office by mail at U.S. Senator David Vitter, U.S. Senate, 516 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20510, or by phone at 202-224-4623. You can also reach me on the web at http://vitter.senate.gov.