SENATE RESOLUTION 241--EXPRESSING SUPPORT FOR THE DESIGNATION OF NOVEMBER 16, 2011, AS NATIONAL INFORMATION AND REFERRAL SERVICES DAY; Congressional Record Vol. 157, No. 114
(Senate - July 27, 2011)

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[Pages S4962-S4963]
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   SENATE RESOLUTION 241--EXPRESSING SUPPORT FOR THE DESIGNATION OF 
  NOVEMBER 16, 2011, AS NATIONAL INFORMATION AND REFERRAL SERVICES DAY

  Mr. MENENDEZ (for himself and Mrs. Murray) submitted the following 
resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, 
Labor, and Pensions:

                              S. Res. 241

       Whereas information and referral services link the consumer 
     who has a need or problem with the most appropriate service 
     to address that need or solve that problem;

[[Page S4963]]

       Whereas quality information and referral services are the 
     keystone point of entry to the entire human services 
     structure delivery system;
       Whereas information and referral services have been 
     recognized in Federal legislation for more than 35 years 
     since the 1973 reauthorization of the Older Americans Act of 
     1965 (42 U.S.C. 3001 et seq.), and the subsequent 
     establishment of the national Eldercare Locator and the 
     development of Aging and Disability Resource Centers;
       Whereas, as of the date of agreement to this resolution, 
     the United States is served by information and referral 
     through 2-1-1 programs, aging information and referral 
     services, Aging and Disability Resource Centers, child care 
     resource and referral services, military family centers, and 
     other specialty information and referral services;
       Whereas individuals who understand the variety of services 
     available are better equipped to make decisions;
       Whereas, in 1997, the national 2-1-1 initiative began with 
     the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta creating the first 24-
     hour telephone information and referral service using the 
     easy-to-remember 2-1-1 dialing code for access;
       Whereas, in 2000, the Federal Communications Commission 
     reserved the 2-1-1 dialing code for community information and 
     referral services, intended as an easy-to-remember and 
     universally recognizable number that would serve as a vital 
     connection between individuals and families in need, and 
     appropriate community-based organizations and government 
     agencies, on a regular basis and in times of disaster;
       Whereas the Alliance of Information and Referral Systems 
     has been providing professional standards and credentialing 
     programs for those operating information and referral 
     services;
       Whereas expanding access to information about, and 
     referrals to, services provides individuals with lower-cost 
     and safer options for managing their needs, and is likely to 
     reduce confusion, frustration, and inaccessibility to 
     services; and
       Whereas requests for assistance through information and 
     referral services and 2-1-1 have increased across the United 
     States due to the economic crisis: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the Senate--
       (1) expresses support for the designation of November 16, 
     2011, as National Information and Referral Services Day--
       (A) to raise public awareness about the existence and 
     importance of information and referral services available to 
     all people in the United States; and
       (B) to more effectively target those services to reach 
     individuals most in need;
       (2) encourages activities in communities across the United 
     States involving schools, nonprofit organizations, 
     businesses, and other entities to ensure information and 
     referral services are part of everyday life in addition to 
     emergency preparedness programs; and
       (3) reaffirms the importance of clear and consistent 
     professional standards to govern every aspect of quality 
     information and referral services.

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