Best state to raise children; model for America’s Promise
Maine is now generally considered one of the best states in the country in which to raise a child. Just today, I received a letter from Colin Powell informing us that we have been chosen by America’s Promise as one of three model states in the nation for
our work on behalf of children. Powell stated that “a great deal of your work represents best practices” that other states can follow. I am tonight accepting Powell’s offer - and Maine will be among the first states to make manifest America’s Promise.
Source: 2001 State of the State address to the Me. legislature
, Jan 24, 2001
Encourage fathers' participation in child-raising.
King adopted the National Governors Association position paper:
Growing evidence suggests that children from families in which fathers do not contribute their time and support endure a number of risk factors. Children with absent fathers are more likely to drop out of school, become teenage parents, develop drug or alcohol problems, or become involved in violent criminal behavior. Congress and the administration have recently proposed a number of federal programs to support state and local fatherhood initiatives.
Governors believe that government at all levels can and should take immediate action to help reduce the number of out-of-wedlock pregnancies and encourage active participation by fathers of all ages in raising their children. Governors have played a leadership role at both the national and state level in developing and implementing comprehensive strategies to strengthen the role of fathers in their childrens’ lives. While many Governors are using Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and other federal program funds to support state-specific fatherhood initiatives, additional investment in fatherhood would broaden the population of fathers that can be served. Governors believe that there should be support of and coordination between existing programs and any new federal funding stream designated for fatherhood initiatives and that these new initiatives should not be funded at the expense of another vital human service program.
Source: National Governors Association "Issues / Positions" 01-NGA12 on Sep 7, 2001
Federal funds & state involvement in fatherhood initiatives.
King adopted the National Governors Association policy:
The nation’s Governors recognize that governments at all levels can and should take immediate action including:
providing additional education and information about the importance of fathers participating in raising their children;
establishing a nongovernmental national clearinghouse to collect and disseminate information regarding responsible fatherhood;
expanding efforts to prevent unintended and out-of-wedlock teen pregnancies;
providing children with appropriate adult male role models, such as mentors, in the absence of a caring father;
ensuring that young men are given opportunities to feel successful and valued, which will lead to the development of self-confidence and preparation for fatherhood;
encouraging the involvement of the community, including the religious community, civic community, business community, and mentors in addressing the importance of father involvement;
developing strategies that include both parents in activities focused on their children, such as training service providers and educators to include both parents in their service delivery;
working with private employers and the education community to provide education and job training opportunities to unemployed, underemployed, and low-skilled fathers; and
paternity establishment and child support enforcement efforts.
Any new federal funding stream designated for fatherhood initiatives should:
support programs in states, at the discretion of each Governor, that encourage appropriate involvement of both parents in the life of a child, with priority given to programs that specifically address the issue of fatherhood;
be coordinated with existing fatherhood programs, as well as with other federal funds that can be used for fatherhood initiatives, such as TANF; and
not be funded at the expense of another vital human service program.
Source: NGA policy HR-28. Fatherhood Policy 01-NGA6 on Aug 15, 2001
More funding & services for victims of domestic violence.
King co-sponsored Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act
Introduction by co-sponsor Sen. Kay Hagan (D,NC): We have a serious responsibility to ensure that women and families are protected. The rates of violence and abuse in our country are astounding and totally unacceptable: domestic violence affects more than 12 million people each year. In my home state, 73 women and children are killed on average every year because of domestic violence.
Since 1994, the STOP Program has provided grants for services, training, officers, and prosecutors, and has transformed our criminal justice system and victim support services. And this bill includes the bipartisan SAFER Act, which helps fund audits of untested DNA evidence and reduces this backlog of rape kits. I ask you: What other victims in America have to identify the attacker before authorities will take action? None.Introduction by Sen. Chuck Grassley(R,IA): I urge my Republican colleagues, as I will do, to support the motion to proceed.
There has long been bipartisan support for the Violence Against Women Act. Too many women are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and dating violence. There is overwhelming bipartisan support for 98% of what is contained in S. 47. [Since our negative vote last session], controversial provisions have been removed. The key stumbling block to enacting a bill at this time is the provision concerning Indian tribal courts. Negotiations are continuing, and compromises would allow the bill to pass with overwhelming bipartisan support. Introduction by Sen. Pat Leahy (D,VT): Our bill will allow services to get to those in the LGBT community who have had trouble accessing services in the past. The rates of domestic and sexual violence in these communities are equal to or greater than those of the general population. We also have key improvements for immigrant victims of domestic and sexual violence.
Sponsored recognition of National Foster Care Month.
King co-sponsored Recognizing National Foster Care Month
RESOLUTION recognizing National Foster Care Month as an opportunity to raise awareness about the challenges of children in the foster care system, and encouraging Congress to implement policy to improve the lives of children in the foster care system.
Whereas there are approximately 400,000 children living in foster care;
Whereas foster care is intended to be a temporary placement, but children remain in the foster care system for an average of 2 years;
Resolved, That the House of Representatives--
encourages Congress to implement policy to minimize the number of children entering the foster care system, to improve the lives of children in the foster care system, and to maximize the number of children exiting foster care to the protection of safe, loving, and permanent families;
acknowledges the unique needs of children in the foster-care system;
recognizes foster youth throughout the US for their ongoing tenacity, courage, and resilience while facing life
acknowledges the exceptional alumni of the foster-care system who serve as advocates and role models for youth who remain in care;
honors the commitment and dedication of the individuals who work tirelessly to provide assistance and services to children in the foster-care system; and
reaffirms the need to continue working to improve the outcomes of all children in the foster-care system through parts B and E of title IV of the Social Security Act and other programs designed to
support vulnerable families;
invest in prevention and reunification services;
promote guardianship, adoption, and other permanent placement opportunities in cases where reunification is not in the best interests of the child;
adequately serve those children brought into the foster-care system; and
facilitate the successful transition into adulthood for children that `age-out` of the foster-care system.
Source: H.Res.577/S.Res.442 14_SRes442 on May 13, 2014