Reps. Bishop, Schiff Reintroduce Bipartisan Child Protection Improvements Act

f t # e
Washington, DC, January 24, 2017 | comments
“Congress has a duty to ensure every youth-serving organization in America can afford and access the very best background checks on staff and volunteers," said Bishop.
share: f t

Today, Congressmen Mike Bishop (MI-08) and Adam Schiff (CA-28) reintroduced the bipartisan Child Protection Improvements Act of 2017 (CPIA), continuing their work on this legislation in the 115th Congress.

Currently, many youth-serving organizations only have access to state-level background checks on prospective staff and volunteers; CPIA would change that so organizations in every state can access national background checks – through the FBI – to ensure information is thorough and complete across state lines.

“Congress has a duty to ensure every youth-serving organization in America can afford and access the very best background checks on staff and volunteers, and doing so means utilizing the FBI’s gold-standard database,” said Rep. Bishop. “We cannot allow a single bad actor to slip through the cracks when it comes to our children’s safety. Protecting kids was a top priority of mine in the Michigan Senate, and I am proud to continue working with Congressman Schiff on this important effort.”

“When parents send their children to after-school programs, sports camps, or to be with mentors, they must be able to trust that their children are in safe hands,” Rep. Schiff said. “Every organization that serves our youth should have access to the FBI fingerprint-based background check system so they can thoroughly screen anyone who will be working with kids. The results of a multi-year pilot program strongly indicate that this system will be effective in catching child predators who try to avoid detection by moving across state lines.”

Specifically, the Child Protection Improvements Act would:

  • Ensure that organizations that serve children, the disabled, and the elderly all across the country have access to FBI fingerprint searches in a timely and affordable manner;

  • Protect privacy rights by ensuring that the specifics of a criminal record are never disclosed without explicit consent by the volunteer or employee and providing an opportunity for individuals to correct errors in their records;

  • It does NOT authorize any new spending. The program will be supported by the fees assessed for background checks by the requesting nonprofit organizations;

  • It does NOT require organizations to utilize FBI fingerprint background checks, only makes them available to those wishing to utilize them.

Additional co-sponsors of CPIA this year include Reps. Walberg (MI-07), Trott (MI-11), Moolenaar (MI-04), Walorski (IN-02), Sensenbrenner (WI-05), Tipton (CO-03), Conyers (MI-13), Dingell (MI-12), Jackson Lee (TX-18), Langevin (RI-02), Boyle (PA-13), Welch (VT-AL), Connolly (VA-11), Cicilline (RI-01), Lieu (CA-33), Pingree (ME-01), DeSaulnier (CA-11), Vela (TX-34), Swalwell (CA-15), Payne (NJ-10), Takano (CA-41) and Cartwright (PA-17).

Last Congress, the bill garnered support from 73 members of the House and Senate, as well as 35 national organizations, including:

  • The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

  • American Camp Association

  • Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America

  • First Focus Campaign for Children, Girls, Inc.

  • Girl Scouts of the USA

  • MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership

  • Mentoring USA

  • National 4-H Council

  • National Network for Youth

  • National Summer Learning Association

  • YMCA of the USA

  • National PTA


f t # e

Stay Connected

Use the form below to sign up for my newsletter and get the latest news and updates directly to your inbox.