Award is given to individuals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to protect children
Sen. Ward helped to present award during a state Capitol ceremony
HARRISBURG, Pa. — PA Family Support Alliance (PFSA), the state’s leader in child abuse prevention, today awarded Huntingdon Borough Police Chief Charles Thomas Streightiff with the Blue Ribbon Champion for Safe Kids Award, which is given annually to four individuals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to support and protect Pennsylvania’s children. Sen. Judy Ward (R-Huntingdon) helped to present the award to Chief Steightiff during a ceremony at the state Capitol Building.
Chief Steightiff is currently the Police Chief at the Huntingdon Borough Police Department. Recently, he established a Crisis Intervention Co-Responder Initiative. A responder assists the department will mental health crisis cases. Chief Steightiff has ensured that this responder can be utilized by other borough agencies. Additionally, Chief Steightiff actively participates in monthly meetings with the Huntingdon County Children’s Services agency and local child advocacy centers. He has been trained in forensic interviewing, unexplained child death investigations, fatality and near-fatality review training, as well as the MDT training approach. MDT training is a victim-centered approach to investigations that ensures additional resources and teams within the community are in coordination with each other.
“Huntingdon Borough children are safer because of Chief Steightiff’s dedication and steadfast commitment to them,” PFSA President and CEO Angela Liddle said. “He is truly on the frontlines protecting his community and we are incredibly grateful for his leadership and service. As a law enforcement officer, he not only stops child abuse, but he is focused on ensuring victims have sufficient support and protection. He has also made it his priority to invest in prevention efforts. He understands that when families have access to educational resources, programs, and services—communities thrive.”
Throughout his law enforcement career, Chief Streightiff has always been well-known in the community because of his tireless work to ensure local children and families in need have access to services and programs. He is a vocal advocate of National Abuse Prevention Month when he raises awareness about abuse prevention resources, and he is the organizer for the department’s National Night Out. At the department’s National Night Out, Chief Streightiff works to ensure educational activities like bike safety and K-9 demonstrations occur, Child ID kits are available for parents, and mental health/family support providers are in attendance. Additionally, he works closely with the local school districts, fellow police departments, and the district attorney’s office.
“I could not be more proud of Chief Streightiff,” said Sen. Ward, who joined PFSA to personally present the award to Chief Steightiff. “This recognition by the PA Family Support Alliance is well deserved. He is constantly engaged with the community and works tirelessly with families, local officials, schools, and many other groups to help keep children safe from abuse. His example is one we should all be mindful of, and he has my sincere thanks for all he does for our children and youth.”
In honor of this accomplishment, PFSA, Sen. Ward and Department of Human Services Acting Secretary Valerie Arkoosh recognized Chief Steightiff in front of a packed audience of lawmakers, media, child advocates, and students in the Capitol Rotunda.
A few pictures and short b-roll clips from today’s ceremony can be found by CLICKING HERE.
Besides Sen. Ward, PFSA also was joined by members of the Senate Aging & Youth Committee and the House Children and Youth Committee, among others.
The ceremony kicked off National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Each year, PFSA hosts activities and events throughout the Commonwealth to increase awareness about the need for individuals to learn about the warning signs of abuse and neglect.
According to the department’s Child Protective Services 2021 Annual Report, there were 5,036 substantiated cases of child abuse, 58 substantiated fatalities, and 136 substantiated near fatalities.
About Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance:
PA Family Support Alliance prevents child abuse and protects children from harm by helping parents learn positive parenting techniques, educating professionals and volunteers who work with children to recognize and report child abuse, and helping community members learn how they can play a positive role in keeping children safe. To learn more about our programs, schedule a training, or donate, please visit pafsa.org, or call 800-448-4906.