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Wednesday, November 30 – The first week of Special Session will have a memorable closing day on Friday in Olympia, when hundreds of kids, parents, and advocates stand together at Children’s Alliance’s Have a Heart for Kids Day: 2011 Special Session. This will culminate in a rally with parent and youth speakers, and a Proclamation by the Children of Washington released and delivered to legislators.
The state legislature reduced funding for State Food Assistance (SFA) by half for the current biennium. A court order is in place prohibiting the benefit reduction, however, pending the outcome of an equal protection and due process lawsuit on behalf of SFA recipients. Gov. Christine Gregoire has again proposed to eliminate the program.
Download The Facts about State Food Assistance to learn more.
A state rule starting early this month has inspired public debate and a lawsuit making national headlines.
The consequences of this policy will threaten the safety and health of Washington’s Medicaid families. The rule imposes harmful and confusing limits on benefits for care received at the emergency room that could have severe consequences for children covered under Apple Health for Kids.
State schools superintendent Randy Dorn joined the Children’s Alliance this week to ask school officials to think about how kids start their day: with their minds on their studies, or on their empty stomachs?
Members of our staff joined Superintendent Dorn and the outstanding educators and students of Auburn’s Washington Elementary School Monday morning to demonstrate a simple route to academic success: school breakfast.
The Children’s Alliance, Dorn and other anti-hunger allies have launched the statewide Fuel Up First with Breakfast Challenge. The Challenge aims to increase participation in school breakfast programs by 50 percent over the next two years.
One leading indicator of hard times – joblessness – is chiefly considered a problem for adults. But when parents are without work, it impacts the entire family.
Last year, nearly 1 in 8 kids (169,000) in our state had at least one parent who experienced the fear and anxiety of unemployment. That marks an increase of 90,000 since the beginning of the recession in 2007.
Washington’s 1.7 million kids had no part in negotiating the deal passed by Congress Tuesday to raise the debt ceiling. But their futures will be affected by it, profoundly and perhaps disastrously.
In a very short time, Congress now stands to make decisions with far-reaching effects on programs used by the one million Washington households accessing food stamps; or the nearly 700,000 kids on Medicaid; or the 11,000 children enrolled in Head Start.
As the deadline for raising the debt ceiling nears, talks between the White House and Congress revolve around the kinds of choices both parties can live with. It’s not just tax exemptions or spending cuts that are at issue; lawmakers are speaking, at least indirectly, about the future of America’s kids.
And when they’re talking about cutting services, what they’re saying is profoundly out of touch – not only with the needs of children, but with the will of voters.