Kids Code Coalition Anticipates Youth Online Safety Highlight in Tonight’s State of the Union

For Immediate Release

Washington, DC – The Kids Code Coalition released the following statement ahead of President Biden’s 2024 State of the Union address:

“As President Biden prepares to address the nation tonight, spotlighting the critical issue of youth online safety, we’re witnessing a significant surge in momentum for Kids Code legislation across the United States, including in Maryland, Minnesota, Vermont, Illinois and Hawaii, following California’s 2022 law. Maryland, in particular, has made remarkable strides this week, signaling a growing consensus about the urgent need to protect our young digital citizens.

Since President Biden first issued his call for action, state legislatures across the nation have stepped up to tackle this issue head-on, championing a proactive, design-focused approach that prioritizes data privacy and safety. These legislative efforts are inspired by age-appropriate design codes already making a positive impact internationally, and are thoughtfully adapted to align with community needs, U.S. legal standards, and include vital nondiscrimination measures.

Meanwhile, the tech industry’s lobby, long reliant on exploitative practices, is increasingly on the defensive in statehouses and as they challenge proposed regulation including the Kids Code in court. Tech companies are deeply out of touch with the reality of urgent calls for change, as captured in last week’s dramatic testimony in Vermont, which has become a rallying point for advocates across the country.

At its heart, the push for Kids Codes is a grassroots movement, powered by young people and dedicated advocates across every part of our society—medical professionals, educators, parents, technologists and more—all working tirelessly for a safer online world. As we anticipate President Biden’s State of the Union address tonight, it’s clear that state-led initiatives for kids’ online safety are not just part of the national conversation—they’re driving it forward, signaling a collective commitment to creating a safer, healthier digital environment for the next generation.”


Widespread support for 2024 Kids Code bills: Bipartisan lawmakers are championing design-centered Kids Code bills across the country this year in states including IllinoisMarylandMinnesotaSouth Carolina and Vermont.

Another call to action: The President called out exactly the kinds of exploitative data practices Kids Code bills are designed to address in his 2023 address, saying: “We must finally hold social media companies accountable for the experiment they are running on our children for profit. And it’s time to pass bipartisan legislation to stop Big Tech from collecting personal data on kids and teenagers online, ban targeted advertising to children, and impose stricter limits on the personal data these companies collect.”

Learn More

Pluribus News – Sparks fly over kids’ online privacy (Austin Jenkins, 2/16/24)

Politico – States get serious about limiting kids’ social media exposure (Ruth Reader, 1/13/24)

Washington Post – States looking to 2024 to pass revised kids’ online safety bills (Cristiano Lima-Strong, 1/2/24)