W. Va. Attorney General supports legislation to protect children from abduction, sex trafficking
CHARLESTON, W. Va. (WHSV) -- 20 Attorneys General from around the country asked President Trump for support in funding for a childcare protection program.
W. Va. AG Partick Morrisey is on board with the National Child ID Act, H.R. 4172, which would help parents, as well as law enforcement, in instances of abduction, exploitation and human trafficking.
This legislation would enable states to request grant funding for identification kits for children in kindergarten through sixth grade.
The identification kits would record a child’s physical characteristics, as well as take their fingerprints and DNA.
This information is then kept in the hands of the child’s guardian. There are no electronic tracking or government records of children, which Morrisey said was a factor in his decision to show his support.
In a letter to Trump, Attorneys General wrote, “Statistics show that more than 800,000 children go missing each year including runaways and those abducted. That is one child gone every 40 seconds.”
Morrisey said this act could benefit West Virginians because human and drug trafficking is a big issue in the Mountain State.
“The two go hand in hand. This supplies Virginia, West Virginia, all across the United States, so the more focus there is on different steps we can take to protect our kids, I think that kind of attention is valuable,” Morrisey said.
Attorneys General in support of the National Child ID Act say the COVID-19 pandemic has made America’s children more vulnerable to be groomed and exploited by predators and they have asked Congress to set aside grant funding in the next stimulus package to purchase these kits.
Morrisey said the grant funding would make the kits far more affordable to the average family at $1.76 per child.
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