“Incredibly, there are those who diminish the importance of fatherhood and the nuclear family – we will not let that happen in our state,” DeSantis said at a signing ceremony, according to The Hill. “I am proud to say we are doing everything we can to support involved fatherhood in Florida.”
DeSantis noted that kids without fathers present are more likely to drop-out of school and more likely to commit crimes.
Governor Ron DeSantis signs legislation to provide $70 million to promote fatherhood at the Bucs indoor facility as Tony Dungy looks on. pic.twitter.com/FShFxdqHcU
— Rick Stroud (@NFLSTROUD) April 11, 2022
The $70 million bill will target fathers directly, helping them with finding employment, and with support obligations, allowing the men to be an active presence in the child’s life according to reports from WLRN.
It also includes money to increase a stipend for those who have been brought up in the foster care system.
“If you look over the last many decades, one of the worst social trends has been the decline of fatherhood. And we do have, in many instances, a fatherhood crisis in this country,” DeSantis said.
The bill was signed at One Buc Place, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers training facility, and DeSantis was joined by former Bucs coach, Hall of Famer, Tony Dungy, who has been an advocate for programs promoting strong fatherhood.
“I had a dad who was around me all the time and supported me, and I thought everyone was like that,” Dungy said at the signing, according to WUSF.
“Then I got to my job, and the National Football League started interviewing our players, and I began to understand not everyone had that same blessing that I had.”
The bill is it aimed at encouraging fathers to stay involved in their children’s lives.
“This isn’t going to solve everything, but it’s going to help,” DeSantis said after signing the bill. “You’re not a man by leaving your kids out to dry. You need to be there.”