Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Senator Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI), Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK), and Rep. Jamie Herrera Beutler (R-WA) to introduce bipartisan Scarlett’s Sunshine on Sudden Unexpected Death Act in US Senate and House
Pittsburgh, PA, October 02, 2018 /PressReleasePing/ – Every year, approximately 3500 babies die suddenly and unexpectedly in their sleep before they reach their first birthday. Grieving parents and family members are left without answers regarding the cause of their infant’s death. Currently, there are no nationwide standards for the investigations, autopsies, or collection of data following an infant or child death. In many cases, this leads to inadequate, inconsistent, and incomplete information, making it more difficult to determine the causes of fatalities and strategies for preventing these tragedies.
The Scarlett’s Sunshine on Sudden Unexpected Death Act would establish federal grants to states and municipalities to improve the way they are handling these tragic deaths. The legislation would improve training and make procedural changes to standardize death scene investigations with the goal of completing death reviews for all infant and child deaths. The bill also establishes federal grants to nonprofits, states, and municipalities to educate and improve awareness of safe sleep guidelines and practices, and it expands support services for grieving families who have experienced the loss of an infant or child. “I am pleased to introduce this legislation to help address unexpected deaths in infants and children, including sleep-related deaths,” said Senator Casey. “Additionally, I wanted to honor the memory of a little girl named Scarlett, who was lost to Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood. We must make sure that the federal government is taking all possible steps to ensure that no family will have to suffer the death of a child, whether it is from a preventable cause like an unsafe sleeping environment or from a cause that we cannot yet identify.”
Cribs for Kids, with its 20-year mission of helping every baby sleep safer, welcomes the opportunity to endorse The Scarlett’s Sunshine on Sudden Unexpected Death Act. “This is vital legislation addressing the importance of a multi-faceted national effort to help reduce the numbers of infants and children dying of Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) and Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC)”, said Judy Bannon, Executive Director and Founder of Cribs for Kids, “Cribs for Kids is proud to support this legislation. It will enable us to educate more families throughout the country about infant safe sleep practices and provide safety-approved cribs to families in need.”
With initiatives like the Back to Sleep movement and the introduction of the ABC’s of Safe Sleep, which educate parents on life-saving sleep guidelines, sleep-related infant deaths have dropped by half in the United States since the 1990s. Cribs for Kids, along with over 1,100 National partners, have provided over 500,000 cribs to families in need of a safe sleep space for their baby, which has helped to lower the number of infant sleep-related deaths further. Despite that progress, the rates of SUDC and SUID have plateaued since the late 90s. The Scarlett’s Sunshine Act will address that fact by raising awareness of the problem at a national level and promoting changes in infant sleep practices to promote safe sleep.
Please help every baby sleep safer by calling or writing to your member of the United States Senate and House of Representatives to express your support for The Scarlett’s Sunshine Act and to encourage them to cosponsor the bill.
Founded in 1998 by Judy Bannon, Cribs for Kids, through a network of over 1,100 partners nationwide, has distributed over 500,000 safety approved cribs to families in need. Cribs for Kids works to eradicate Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) through programming that focuses on safe sleep education and environments.
Cribs for Kids www.cribsforkids.org
Judith A. Bannon
Executive Director and Founder
Cribs for Kids
Pittsburgh, PA 15207
(412) 332-5680 X3