The end of summer means the start of a new school year. For many children and families, this means getting to know new teachers, babysitters, and child care providers. While this can be worrisome for families, a bill recently signed into law will help put families at ease and ensure employers and parents have the information they need when hiring individuals that work with children.

The signing of Senate Bill 236, was the result of concerned parents and advocates to find a solution to keep kids safe from abuse and neglect when being cared for by other adults. Its signing into law was a huge win for kids, families, and employers in Kentucky. Sponsored by Senator Julie Raque Adams, SB 236 helps to close the gaps in background checks of adults working with children in schools, youth camps, and in the home, as private babysitters. The legislation ensures employers have access to the necessary information about employees and volunteers, empowering them to make an informed decision on allowing that person to work with children.

On August 15th, we joined Governor Matt Bevin, Senator Julie Raque Adams, and key advocates for the ceremonial signing of Senate Bill 236 and to celebrate continued efforts to protect children from experiencing abuse and neglect.

“Because of this legislation, parents can go to work or get a little respite from the demands of raising a child with peace of mind now knowing that their little ones are safe in the care of their camp counselors and babysitters, and in their schools. Kids deserve to learn and play in a safe environment, and Senator Raque Adams and our leaders in Frankfort have ensured that.” – Dr. Terry Brooks

To all of our partners of the Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children who worked to make this legislation possible—thank you. We also thank the partners of the Face It® movement, especially Kosair Charities®, for continuing to stand up for kids to help prevent abuse and neglect. And most of all, we are grateful to Senator Julie Raque Adams for sponsoring this piece of legislation and to our state leaders for taking an important step to keeping children safe.

Read Kentucky Youth Advocates statement from Dr. Terry Brooks here and the Face It movement’s press release here.