Representative Tim Murphy (PA-18) today was presented with the prestigious Defender of Children Award given by the First Focus Campaign for Children. The award is presented to members of Congress who show leadership and initiative toward improving the well-being of children, especially those most in need.
“Through years of working with children I’ve all too often seen the faces of those with behavior problems, developmental disabilities or recovering from trauma. Some have overcome and grew despite or even because of their challenges. Others continued to struggle. But all need a voice to help those children and their families deal with the difficulties they cannot fully handle on their own. I remain committed to being part of that voice,” said Rep. Murphy. “I am honored to receive this award today, and I look forward to working with First Focus to ensure our nation’s most vulnerable citizens have a powerful ally in the United States Congress.”
Congressman Murphy receives the Defender of Children Award from Meghan McHugh, Policy Director for the First Focus Campaign for Children.
“We applaud our Defenders of Children for their unflagging commitment to protect our nation’s future,” said Bruce Lesley, president of the First Focus Campaign for Children. “Children cannot vote, hold press conferences, or donate to political campaigns to thank the Members of Congress that support them and protect their interests. And because of that, today we are honoring those Members on behalf of children.”
First Focus recognizes leaders who introduce, co-sponsor and support legislation that advances children’s issues. In presenting Rep. Murphy with the Defender of Children Award, the organization cited his many efforts and accomplishments in this arena, most recently his support of S. 3307, the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act passed in December 2010. In the 111th Congress, Murphy co-authored H.R. 2596, the No Child Left Unimmunized Against Influenza Act, which establishes a public health pilot project to immunize children against the flu. The organization also noted the Congressman’s Family Health Care Accessibility Act (HR 1745), which would break down the barriers preventing physicians from volunteering their services at Community Health Centers where millions of children receive primary care services.
In addition, First Focus mentioned Congressman Murphy’s commitment to access to quality healthcare for children. Rep. Murphy introduced the Children’s Health Insurance Accessibility Act (HR 2496), a bi-partisan bill that would remove barriers to enrollment for impoverished children who are already eligible for CHIP.
Rep. Murphy is a former child psychologist with over three decades experience working with abused and neglected youth. He is the Co-chair of the GOP Doctors Caucus and the Mental Health Caucus.