Child C.A.R.E. Act Offers Low-Cost, High-Quality Options for Working Families

Washington – Working families seeking relief from growing childcare costs could have greater access to low-cost, high-quality child care under new legislation introduced today by U.S. Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA), U.S. Reps Joseph Crowley (D-NY), and Lois Frankel (D-FL).The Child Care Access to Resources for Early-learning Act (Child C.A.R.E. Act) takes important steps to address a national crisis, the exponentially growing lack of affordable childcare. In the last 30 years, average weekly childcare expenses have grown by more than 70 percent and federal support has almost nothing to offset the increase in costs.By 2021, the C.A.R.E Act seeks to guarantee access...

In Our View: Fight Now or Pay Later

The ColumbianEditorial Board2/7/16Homeless crisis has huge impact on kids, and timely action is necessaryThere is a school of thought, one that has some merit, which suggests there is little that government can do to cure the plight of homelessness. That many people prefer to live on the streets. That many people are reaping the results of their own actions in their inability to secure and maintain housing.There is much evidence, after all, that the best intentions of governments and a large increase in public spending have done little to mitigate what continues to be a growing problem. Yet those...

Where did you spend the night? Counting NJ's homeless

myCentralJersey.comBy Sergio Bichao1/27/2016Nonprofit organizations and government agencies will spend Wednesday asking people on the streets and in shelters where they spent the night before as part of a statewide Point-in-Time Count of the homeless population.Last year, the count found 10,211 homeless men, women and children on a single night, a decrease of 14 percent from 2014. Nationally, the numbers fell by 2 percent.Of those in the Garden State, 974 people were unsheltered and spending the night in cars ...Read More

No child should ever be without a home

Record HeraldBy Congressman Steve Stivers12/30/2015Recently, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released its Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress. This report provides a “point-in-time” count of homeless Americans, an estimate which is based upon the numbers collected on one particular night in January.The count includes homeless individuals living in shelters, and those identified by volunteers who survey places such as streets, parks, rail stations and all-night businesses where those who are homeless frequently seek shelter.In 2015, HUD identified 128,000 homeless children under the age of 18 ...Read More

Bipartisan Spending Bill, Tax Package, Will Help Millions of Children and Families

Washington – The end-of-year spending bill and tax package released by Congress today calls for permanently extending the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC), effectively helping millions of America’s children and families from falling deeper into poverty.Studies have showed that combined, the EITC and CTC expand children’s opportunities to be healthier, perform better in school, and have higher earnings in adulthood. The credits are a critical support to help families offset the cost of raising children.“We applaud Congress for coming together in the best interest of children and making the EITC and CTC permanent,”...

Major Revision to “No Child Left Behind” a Step in the Right Direction

Washington – First Focus Campaign for Children (FFCC) today welcomed Congressional approval of a major re-write of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) that includes key provisions to boost educational outcomes for low-income students and improves early childhood education initiatives across the country.The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), approved today in the Senate, is a refreshing example of how strong bipartisan efforts can lead to improved outcomes for children. ESSA puts an end to the patchwork federal waiver system and allows states to develop more tailored accountability measures and interventions that are more reflective of their student populations.“When Congress...

Portman named 2015 Champion of Children

The Daily AdvocateWASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) was recently named a 2015 Champion of Children by the First Focus Campaign for Children.Portman was recognized for his leadership on issues important to the health and well-being of children including improving the foster care system and protecting vulnerable Ohio children from human traffickers...Read more

Counting the homeless

MarketplaceBy Noel KingThe Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) releases data on homeless Americans each year, and those numbers are always open to debate. Bruce Lesley is the president of First Focus, which advocates for homeless families. He said HUD's definition is limited."They look at things like families who are staying in homeless shelters, families who are on the streets, parks, light-rail stations, tunnels, those kinds of things," Lesley said...Read more

Critics question HUD figures showing drop in number of Tennessee homeless

Chattanooga Times Free PressFederal officials say the number of Americans and Tennesseans who have experienced homelessness has dropped 11 percent since 2010, and they attribute the decline to President Barack Obama's Opening Doors initiative.But critics nationally and in Chattanooga question the U.S. and Tennessee figures in the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development's latest Annual Homeless Assessment Report...Read more

Homelessness a problem for more than a half-a-million Americans this holiday season

The Kansas City StarBy Lewis DiuguidIt’s important as people head into the Thanksgiving Day holiday this week and the Christmas shopping season that follows to remember folks who are less fortunate.’Tis the season...Read more