Saud Anwar

State Senator

Saud Anwar

Deputy President Pro Tempore

Working For You

April 26, 2021

Senator Anwar, Representative Linehan, Children’s Committee Fighting to End Child Sexual Abuse

Today, State Senator Saud Anwar (D-South Windsor) and State Representative Liz Linehan (D-Cheshire/Southington/Wallingford), Senate and House Chairs of the Children’s Committee, gathered on the steps of the State Capitol with allies to discuss upcoming legislation currently considered by the Committee intended to fight and end child sexual abuse. April is National Child Abuse Awareness Month, and the legislation was discussed just before the House entered session.

“As a parent and a legislator serving as co-chair of the Children’s Committee, I want people to know that even one child being a victim is too many,” said Sen. Anwar. “Rest assured that we will systematically legislate that no one will hurt our children or rob a child of their childhood. Today, the proposed bills will provide us with more ammunition to protect our children.”

“Ending child sexual abuse has always been a top priority of mine, and by extension, of the Children’s Committee,” said Rep. Linehan. “These bills individually, but especially in totality, will go further to prevent child sexual abuse than ever before, because they focus on three important points – they protect kids while in their ‘safe spaces’ like school, sports, and camps; they educate and empower kids and parents; and they collect data which will be used to shape prevention policy for years to come.”

Sen. Anwar and Rep. Linehan were joined at the Capitol today by Sarah Eagan, Connecticut’s Child Advocate; Marissa Michaels, a Connecticut survivor of teacher sexual misconduct; and representatives from organizations including Beth Hamilton, executive director of the Connecticut Alliance to End Sexual Violence, Deb Kelleher, executive director of the Annie C. Courtney Foundation, John Cattelan, executive director of the Connecticut Alliance of YMCAs, Dr. Sabrina Trocchi, President and CEO of the Wheeler Clinic and Michael Williams, Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Children and Families.

Legislators discussed several key pieces of legislation currently being considered by the Legislature, including the following:

  • House Bill 6113, “An Act Concerning The Provision of Information Concerning Child Sex Abuse,” which would require childhood sports, camps and youth groups to include information on grooming and sexual abuse as part of registration; it is currently passed unanimously out of committee. As many as 95 percent of sexual abuse incidents can be prevented through education, making this focus important.
  • House Bill 6399, “An Act Concerning Center for Disease Control’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey,” which would add a question to an annual survey given to middle school and high school students across Connecticut to better understand the prevalence of adult sexual misconduct toward children; it passed the Children’s Committee 12-1, unanimously passed the Education
  • Committee and has bipartisan co-sponsor support.
  • House Bill 6417, “An Act Concerning Background Checks for Certain Employees of Youth Camps,” which would require summer camps licensed by the Office of Early Childhood to utilize background checks for employees over the age of 18; passed out of the Children’s Committee 12-1 and has bipartisan co-sponsor support.
  • House Bill 6511, “An Act Requiring Background Checks For Youth Sports Coaches, Trainers and Instructors,” requires coaches, instructors and trainers over the age of 18 to undergo background checks; passed unanimously out of Children’s Committee unanimously with bipartisan cosponsor support.