Have a Heart for Kids Day is your day to speak up for kids. Right now, your voice matters. Join hundreds of child, youth, and family advocates from across Washington State and speak up for kids!
In this edition, a dentist says a new type of dental health provider on his team will extend needed care to families in his clinic and throughout Washington. In Olympia, parents and advocates tell legislators why high-quality child care and rating standards are critical to kids' safety and success. In national news, the benefits of quality early learning are seen up to 30 years later, and researchers explain how hunger and obesity are intertwined.
Last week’s national poll results on food stamps should make Washington legislators take notice.
The poll found overwhelming support from voters for the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, or SNAP, known universally as food stamps.
Along with tens of thousands of Washington children benefitting from SNAP, more than 12,000 children in our state depend on a form of food stamps called State Food Assistance – one of the vital programs lawmakers may cut.
The poll, conducted in the second week of January, is a strong indication that cutting SFA would be enormously unpopular:
In this edition, child advocates introduce an early learning bill in the State Legislature to increase quality and equity of learning before kindergarten, as families face cuts to Working Connections Child Care. In the national press, food stamps are as pro-equality as they are anti-hunger, and the marriage equality bill for Washington families is discussed across the country.
The State Supreme Court earlier this month based a key decision on our state’s constitutional responsibility to provide a basic education to every child residing in Washington. During this legislative session, lawmakers can pass one bill that’s key to upholding that responsibility.
The High Quality Early Learning Act would establish universally accessible early learning programs for Washington 3- and 4-year-olds, while also strengthening programs that ensure the healthy development of infants and toddlers.
Eight-year-old Ashley had a toothache – a common problem for a kid her age.
Calling numerous dental offices in the three-county area surrounding their home, Ashley’s mother April couldn’t get her an appointment. Most didn’t take her form of insurance, Apple Health for Kids.
Meanwhile, Ashley’s cavity turned into an abscessed tooth. The resulting pain and earaches were keeping her up at night.
In this edition, Washington begins 2012 with millions in national recognition for Apple Health for Kids just after winning a competition from the Obama Administration to advance and extend quality early learning throughout our state. In other news, routine dental health care is out of reach and unaffordable for too many, so some states are looking to add a new provider to the dental workforce.
A new year for Washington begins with a new milestone for kids. The last two weeks of 2011 brought our state tens of millions of federal dollars, positioning Washington as a national leader in both children’s health and early learning.
In fact, our state was just one of four in the country to win national competitions for health and early learning, along with Ohio, Maryland and North Carolina.