Congressional Dads Caucus Announces Working Groups on Mental Health & Gun Violence Prevention
Washington, July 26, 2023
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today U.S. Rep. Jimmy Gomez (CA-34), Founder and Chair of the Congressional Dads Caucus, announced that U.S. Rep. Rob Menendez (NJ-08) will chair the new Dads Caucus Family Mental Health Working Group and U.S. Rep. Dan Goldman (NY-10) will chair the new Dads Caucus Gun Violence Prevention Working Group.
The taskforces will convene subject matter experts to educate members on pressing issues and present policy proposals for the Dads Caucus to consider.
“Our nation is dealing with two crises that are causing irreparable harm to families—the gun violence epidemic and the mental health crisis—and these two working group chairs will focus our 31-member caucus on addressing these critical issues,” said Gomez. “Rep. Goldman has a strong history of advocating for commonsense gun safety policies, and I’m proud to have him leading our working group to combat gun violence, which is now the number one killer of children. I have full confidence that Rep. Menendez will use this platform to advance policies and ideas that make mental health care more accessible and affordable for every person —this work is crucial.”
The taskforces aim to combat the gun violence epidemic, which is the number one killer of children, and the mental health crisis, which is affecting both kids and parents. In a 2022 study, 18 percent of teens said they suffered from anxiety, while 20 percent of mothers and 15 percent of fathers did, and 15 percent of teens reported to have depression, compared with 16 percent of mothers and 10 percent of fathers.
“All families deserve resources to keep themselves and their loved ones healthy, but too often, mental health gets overlooked in our health care system,” said Rep. Menendez. “Mental health services remain out of reach for millions of American families, while stigmas make it more difficult for them to get the care they need. I am honored to Chair the Dads Caucus Mental Health Working Group and to collaborate with my colleagues to support healthy families.”
“The most important role in my life is as a father to my five kids whose safety I fear for every single day that I send them off to school,” Rep. Goldman said. “Gun violence is a public health crisis in this country and now the leading cause of death for children in America, with kids across the country learning active shooter drills before they learn multiplication tables. Ending the scourge of gun violence must be a national priority, and I thank my fellow Congressional dads for their trust in selecting me as the new Chair of the Dads Caucus Gun Violence Prevention Working Group. I am humbled by this responsibility and pledge to use every tool and resource at my disposal to make measurable progress on the defining issue of our time.”