WASHINGTON – Senator Maggie Hassan today applauded President Trump’s signing of the bipartisan Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act into law, which she cosponsored to ensure that grandparents raising grandchildren are better able to meet the needs of the children in their care.
A growing consequence of the opioid crisis is the increasing number of grandparents raising their grandchildren because of the children’s parents overdosing or being absent because of their substance use disorders. The bipartisan Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act, which was introduced by Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Bob Casey (D-PA), supports those grandparents, establishing a federal task force to help grandparents raising grandchildren better meet the needs of the children in their care and to strengthen the health and well-being of both the grandparents and grandchildren.
“I am pleased that President Trump has signed the bipartisan Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act into law,” Senator Hassan said. “One of the consequences of the opioid epidemic is that many more grandparents have had to take on the critical role of primary caregiver to their grandchildren whose parents have died or are absent due to their substance use disorder. This bill plays a crucial role in helping to ensure that these grandparents have the support they need to care for their grandchildren – as well as to strengthen their own health and well-being. Although this federal task force is an important step forward to help meet the needs of these families, we must continue to commit more resources to support the children and family members affected by this devastating crisis.
The Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act creates a federal task force charged with developing and disseminating information designed to help grandparents raising grandchildren navigate the school system, plan for their families’ future, address mental health issues for themselves and their grandchildren, and build social and support networks. The task force serves as a one-stop shop of resources and information for grandparents raising grandchildren, and would also be charged with producing a report to Congress on their findings both about best practices to support grandparents and any identified gaps in resource needs for grandparents raising grandchildren.