|Posted:||September 15, 2017 09:43 AM|
|From:||Representative Rosita C. Youngblood and Rep. Carol Hill-Evans|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Recognizing the week of September 25 to October 1, 2017 as "Diaper Need Awareness Week" in Pennsylvania|
|In the near future, we will introduce a resolution recognizing the week of September 25 to October 1, 2017 as "Diaper Need Awareness Week" in Pennsylvania.
Access to a reliable supply of clean diapers is a necessity for the health and wellbeing of Pennsylvania's children and incontinent adults. Infants and toddlers who are living in households with little or no access to diapers could spend a day or longer in one diaper, leading to significant potential health risks. And, from an economic and educational standpoint, a supply of diapers is usually a requirement for infant and toddlers to attend and participate in childcare programs.
For seniors and incontinent adults, the lack of clean disposable undergarments pose a serious health risk that could lead to extended hospital stays and even death.
According to the National Diaper Bank Network, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring that every baby in the United States can be clean, healthy and dry, there is a growing diaper gap in America – with many families struggling to provide new and clean diapers. In fact, across the country, one in every three mothers finds it difficult to provide diapers for their children, and nearly 5.2 million children under the age of three suffer from diaper need. And for seniors on fixed incomes, incontinence products could cost as much as $1,000 a year.
Community organizations across the Commonwealth are doing their part to help with this epidemic by hosting diaper donation drives, which are critical in providing these essential materials to families in need, and raising awareness about the real implications of a widening diaper supply gap. In fact, Pennsylvania has 15 recognized and active diaper banks that are members of the National Diaper Bank Network. These 15 diaper banks provide more than 3.4 million diapers to families in need each year.
It is important that we, as lawmakers and community leaders, raise awareness of this issue that impacts so many families across our Commonwealth, and recognize the efforts of all community organizations that help our families keep their children, and incontinent adults, clean, healthy and dry.
In conjunction with Diaper Need Awareness Week, we will host the 4th Annual Diaper Need Awareness Week Diaper Drive from Sept. 25 through Oct. 6 in the East Wing Rotunda. Last year we collected more than 5,000 diapers during the two week event, with donations coming from several departments and agencies in all branches of state government. We hope to eclipse that mark this year – and continue to show support to diaper banks and diaper programs all across the Commonwealth.
I hope you will join us in cosponsoring this resolution, and participating in our diaper drive!
Introduced as HR506