Rep. Kelly Statement on House Passage of Make America Secure and Prosperous Act

Sep 14, 2017
Rep. Kelly Statement on House Passage of Make America Secure and Prosperous Act

Includes Kelly amendment to help increase infant adoption


WASHINGTON — Today the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3354, the Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2018, and H.R. 3697, the Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act. H.R. 3354 includes an amendment introduced by U.S. Representative Mike Kelly (R-PA) to re-start the Infant Adoption Awareness Training Program. The amendment was adopted by the House yesterday morning by unanimous vote.

Statement by Rep. Kelly on passage of H.R. 3354:

“I am very pleased that the People’s House has responsibly acted to fund the government and guarantee that proven and effective federal programs can continue serving the American people. I am especially proud this package includes commonsense measures to cut wasteful spending, roll back job-killing regulations, enforce pro-life policies, protect Second Amendment rights, and combat crime and illegal immigration, along with other conservative priorities.”

On inclusion of adoption amendment:

“By re-starting the Infant Adoption Awareness Training Program, my amendment will ensure that expectant mothers across America can receive access to the best available information about adoption as an option. While there are approximately two million couples currently waiting to adopt, in 2014 only 18,329 domestic infant adoptions occurred. With this crucial training program back in place, as adoption education expands and improves, more couples seeking children will be able to start families and more infants will be welcomed into loving homes.”

Statement by National Council For Adoption:

Thank you to Representative Mike Kelly and the U.S. House of Representatives for unanimously passing an amendment to re-start the Infant Adoption Awareness Training Program (IAATP). Women facing unplanned pregnancies deserve to have access to accurate, unbiased information about adoption in order to make their own fully informed decisions. The IAATP, which originally ran from 2000 to 2010, awards grants to train healthcare workers in how to better provide expectant women with information about adoption. As a previous grant recipient, National Council For Adoption (NCFA) educated more than 20,000 healthcare participants.

“From the very beginning, IAATP was an enormous success. We are glad to see that this vital program will be re-started,” says NCFA president and CEO Chuck Johnson, who is a former adoption agency director and IAATP Master Trainer. Mr. Johnson became the director of NCFA’s IAATP grant initiative in 2006. “We’ve seen firsthand the tremendous positive impact this program has had on the lives of adopted children, birth parents, and adoptive parents. Education strengthens the entire adoption community and provides for more successful outcomes for children. Thank you to Rep. Kelly and the House of Representatives for your continued commitment to America’s children and families.”

BACKGROUND: The Infant Adoption Awareness Training Program was first authorized by the U.S. Congress in 2000 to award grants to adoption organizations to help train designated staff to provide timely and accurate adoption information and referrals to pregnant women on an equal basis with all other courses of action. The program annually delivered training to an estimated 10,000 health care workers nationwide, but was ended in 2010. Rep. Kelly’s amendment to H.R. 3354 designates $5 million to re-activate the program (of the total $39.1 million already provided by the bill to “Adoption Awareness Programs”).

More information about H.R. 3354 can be found here and here.