Friday night’s takeover of the state Senate gives pundits much to ponder. Who gained at whose expense? What happens now?
But while the dust settles on a potentially deadlocked legislature, one fact is clear. The children of Washington got trampled when a group of Senators conspired to ram through the entire state education, health care, and social services budget without even a nod to public input. Kids are the new roadkill.
How quickly things change. Last year, members of the Senate’s “Roadkill Caucus” stood up for kids and successfully blocked cuts such as taking away Apple Health for Kids health coverage from 27,000 children. In fact, most members of that caucus voted against brutal cuts to kids in the budget that prevailed by the narrowest of margins.
Important legislation to help meet the oral health needs of kids and families took a major step forward this year in Washington.
Senate Bill 6126, legislation to improve dental access in our state, passed out of the Senate Health & Long-Term Care Committee with the support of committee Chair Sen. Karen Keiser, and lead sponsor, Sen. David Frockt, and early backing from Rep. Eileen Cody. The bill made marked strides, but did not pass the Rules Committee by the February 14th cut-off this legislative session.
The remarkable progress of this issue is the product of a diverse and growing campaign. The Washington Dental Access Campaign will continue the momentum to create a mid-level provider as a way to modernize our state’s oral health workforce and improve access to routine dental care.
Last Monday, Washington anti-hunger advocates sat down with a key Obama administration official and informed him that children and families across our state continue to feel the impact of the recession.
Our 2012 legislative agenda calls on lawmakers to:
Download and print our 2012 legislative agenda.
On Dec. 2, 2011, Children's Alliance gathered hundreds across the state on Capitol steps to issue a statement to lawmakers signed by Washington's kids.
Read our Proclamation by the Children of Washington State: For Us, By Us, For Our Future.
The State of Washington’s Children 2012 is a broad review of how Washington’s 1.5 million kids are faring in tough times. The report is issued by KIDS COUNT in Washington, a new partnership between Children’s Alliance and the Washington State Budget & Policy Center.
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.