Children’s Champions Update
April 2, 2014
Exciting News: Congress Extends Voluntary Home Visiting Program & Funding
On Monday the Senate voted to pass the Medicare doctor payment “patch”, or the “doc fix” bill. Riding along with the bill is the extension through March 31, 2015 of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program and its funding. The House previously voted in favor of the extension and now it awaits the President’s signature.
This is a very important victory – MIECHV provides grants to states to help support voluntary home visiting, an evidence-based program that provides parenting education to low-income families. The program offers a wide range of services, including literacy and early education, family counseling, child abuse prevention, medical services, and much more.
Thank you all for calling Congress to extend the home visiting program. Your efforts help support families and ensure that their children have a good start in life and healthy development.
For more information on the home visiting program, click here.
The New Ryan Budget: Steep Cuts Proposed
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan released his budget plan for the next ten years, which would achieve a balanced budget by 2024, in part by reducing spending by $5.1 trillion. The proposal is similar to the proposal he made last year. It includes dramatic cuts to Medicaid, SNAP (food stamps), and domestic discretionary programs.
For example, under this budget plan:
· The SNAP food assistance program would be cut by $125 billion over five years.
· Nondefense domestic discretionary spending would be cut by $791 billion. (Examples of domestic discretionary programs include Head Start, child care, K-12, WIC, and special education).
KIDS COUNT Report Shows State and National Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Children’s Health and Education
A new report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation using the KIDS COUNT index compares the progress of children in areas of health and education across various racial and ethnic groups, both at state and at national levels.
The “Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children” report is based on 12 indicators, such as birth weight, proficiency or scores on math and reading tests, on-time high school graduation, and family income. The indicators track children’s success at various stages of life, from birth up until adulthood.
To read the full report, click here.