January 13, 2010 — Gov. Chris Gregoire’s revised budget rightly protects Apple Health for Kids, Maternity Support Services and some other vital programs that are helping Washington families weather this grueling recession. But many critical investments remain in jeopardy.
The Seattle Times invited the Children's Alliance and a handful of other organizations to write an oped giving state lawmakers advice for the upcoming session.
We urged them not to turn their backs on the children and families who need them most. "If we do," Executive Director Paola Maranan wrote, "we would only create problems that become costlier to solve down the road."
The Children's Alliance continues to obtain coverage surrounding the announcement that Washington won a $7.5 million "performance bonus" for the state's health insurance program for low- and moderate-income kids. The extra money, which the Children's Alliance worked hard to help the state secure, can and should be used to stop 16,000 kids from losing Apple Health for Kids coverage.
The Olympian article quotes Jon Gould, deputy director of the Children’s Alliance, who called on lawmakers to:
(Dec. 17, 2009) — Washington’s health insurance program for children has won a $7.5 million performance bonus from the federal government − a timely windfall that could prevent thousands of children from losing their Apple Health for Kids coverage.
The federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services awarded the bonuses to nine states that met enrollment targets and other conditions, such as streamlining their application and renewal procedures.
December 2, 2009— A new report from the Children’s Alliance shows that merely 16 percent of the 280,000 children who eat free lunches during the school year have access to similar meals during the summer months.
The report, “Summertime Hunger in Washington State,” includes initial data from the summer of 2009 that suggest more children flocked to the summer meal programs during the recession, but that the programs operated for fewer days as school districts, parks departments and other organizations cut back due to budget woes.
The Children's Alliance continues to gain coverage from rising hunger rates. This article ran in the Spokesman-Review and cites hunger figures from our 'Hungry in Washington' report and quotes Linda Stone, our Senior Food Policy Coordinator, saying:
Several media outlets picked up on our Hungry in Washington report, including the Seattle Times, Northwest Public Radio (KPLU and KUOW), the Olympian, and Real Change. The Seattle Times added information from Linda Stone, our Senior Food Policy Coordinator, to a national Associated Press story:
"We need more family-wage jobs, and federal nutrition programs should be stronger," Stone said. She also hopes the state Legislature will act to help pay for summer meal programs for children who depend on breakfast and lunch programs in public schools during the school year.
"There are children in classrooms across the state who may be coming into classrooms without dinner," Stone said. "We see school feeding programs as rock- bottom important."
November 16, 2009 -- A new report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirms that hunger in Washington is on the rise as the effects of the recession take their toll on Washington families.
Estimated Washington households that are food insecure, meaning there may not be enough to eat, rose to 288,000 in 2008, a 13 percent increase over the prior year. The rise in households that are hungry was even more striking: 112,000 Washington households met the definition for hunger (called “very low food insecurity” in the report), an increase of 24 percent.
The Spokesman Review published an article about dramatic cuts being proposed to the successful Apple Health for Kids program. Children's Alliance Deputy Director Jon Gould was quoted: