(Bloomberg) -- Their kids may have gone home after a week on the floor of Congress, but a group of House representatives are keeping their status as fathers front and center with a new caucus to advance issues crucial to working families.

The Congressional Dads Caucus officially launched on Thursday and will “highlight issues facing working families and advocate for policies that support all parents and children,” according to a fact sheet from Congressman Jimmy Gomez, a California Democrat. Other founding members include Rashida Tlaib, Joaquin Castro, Andy Kim, Jamaal Bowman, Rob Menendez, Dan Goldman and Joe Neguse. All are parents and Democrats.

“This is how we set an equitable path forward for the next generation and build a brighter future for our children — including my five-month-old son, Hodge,” Gomez said in a statement.

Their agenda includes supporting legislation on issues like national paid family and medical leave and affordable child care. Less than one in four workers have access to paid family leave, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. More than half of parents of children younger than 15 spend 20% or more of their household income on child care.

The group is also fighting to revive the expanded Child Tax Credit, which provided households monthly cash payments in 2021. After the credit ended, 3.7 million kids fell into poverty, a study from the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at Columbia University found. Most households that received the money used it for basics like food, utilities, housing and clothing, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. 

Earlier this month, Gomez and Castro were among the Congressional representatives who turned the Capitol into a makeshift day care as the speaker vote dragged on for days. Their children — Hodge and Anna Valentina, respectively — made headlines, and the fathers provided lighthearted updates about the ordeal as they learned there are limited spaces for dads to change diapers in the halls of Congress.

In his statement, Castro said the caucus is a way for the dads of Congress to pull their weight to advance family-centric legislation. “Historically, women legislators — especially mothers — have been the champions for paid leave, affordable child care and other policies that support working families,” he said. “They deserve an extraordinary amount of credit, but they should also be able to count on male legislators to be partners in their fight from the beginning.”

This isn’t the first parenting network in Congress: A cohort of nine female representatives launched the Moms in the House Caucus in 2019, with the aim of both supporting mothers in congressional office as well as promoting family-first legislation. Other caucuses focus on maternal health and specifically Black maternal health issues.

The exact number of working parents in Congress isn’t clear, but as of 2020, roughly 30% of representatives had children under 18, according to CNBC.

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