Pages tagged "Letters and Correspondence"
On February 7, 2017, First Focus submitted a joint letter to the Senate and House of Representatives urging Congress to prioritize investments in children’s programs, in support of your reintroduction of S. 58/H.R. 173, the Middle Class Health Benefits Tax Repeal Act of 2017. This legislation repeals the “Cadillac Tax,” which is a 40 percent excise tax on the cost of employer-sponsored health coverage that exceeds a certain and rather arbitrary premium benefits threshold of $10,800 for self-only coverage and $29,100 for family coverage in 2020.
As such, the following are child- and family-focused policy recommendations that the President can follow to create a future that our children need and deserve.
Our recommendations are broken into seven broad categories:
- ensuring a safe and healthy future;
- supporting families with children;
- ending food insecurity and promoting child nutrition;
- providing children with an early, solid foundation;
- helping every student succeed,
- focusing child abuse and neglect response efforts on child well- being; and
- promoting child and family values.
Within each category is a list of goals, and actions the new Administration can take to reach those goals, all of which will improve the lives of our children.
To truly make America great, we must invest in our nation’s future – our children. First Focus Campaign for Children looks forward to working together towards creating a future that all children – and our nation – deserve.
Download the 100 Days Recommendations here.
First Focus Campaign for Children joined other child advocates submitted a letter to Congress calling for policymakers to keep the Affordable Care Act to ensure that any changes do no harm to children.
Thanks to Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and the ACA, ninety-five percent of children in the United States have health coverage – an historic high. Children must not lose ground: any health reforms must build on achievements already made to further improve coverage for children.
On September 14, 2016, members of the Children's Budget Coalition submitted a letter to the Senate and House of Representatives urging Congress to prioritize investments in children’s programs while working in a bipartisan fashion, pass a short-term CR and address the looming Zika virus health crisis with emergency funding
Included are 23 members of the Children's Budget Coalition.
Join advocates to support the passage of the Family First Services Prevention Act of 2016. Add your name here.
June 30, 2016
Dear Majority Leader McConnell, Minority Leader Reid, Chairman Hatch, and Ranking Member Wyden:
We the undersigned organizations representing the National Home Visiting Coalition (Coalition) are writing in support of the bipartisan, bicameral Family First Prevention Services Act (S. 3065). This landmark legislation is the next step in the long history of congressional action to protect children. We commend you for your continued commitment to providing high quality preventative services and protection from harm to our nation’s most overburdened families and vulnerable children.
The Act provides increased federal investments in prevention and would allow funds under Title IV-E of the Social Security Act to be used for quality mental health, substance abuse prevention and treatment services, and in-home parent based skills in order to keep children safely in their families and communities. As a Coalition comprised of advocates for children and families, home visiting model developers, service providers, and leading home visiting experts, we are keenly aware of the multigenerational impact that early childhood home visiting has on the lives of families.
On June 14, 2016, First Focus Campaign for Children submitted a letter of support to the chairs and ranking members of the House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee in support of the Family First Prevention Services Act of 2016. This bill makes important policy changes in federal child welfare spending that better supports the needs of vulnerable children and families.
The First Focus Campaign for Children and 21 other members of the Children's Budget Coalition today sent a letter to Sens. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., and Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Reps. Tom Cole, R-Okla., and Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., urging them to support robust funding under a bipartisan compromise on federal programs that impact children under the jurisdiction of the Appropriations Subcommittees on Labor, Health & Human Services and Education.
According to the 2015 Children's Budget Book published by First Focus, total government spending on children in the last five years, when adjusted for inflation, is down 9.4 percent, more than twice the rate of overall spending decreases of 4 percent. Members of the Children's Budget Coalition are concerned that disproportionate cuts to children’s programs will have a long-term impact on the future of our nation’s children and families.
Signatories to the letter include:
Alliance for Strong Families and Communities
Child Welfare League of America
Children’s Health Fund
First Focus Campaign for Children
Institute for Child Success
MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership
National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth
National Education Association
National Network for Youth
National Title I Association
Public Advocacy for Kids
Save the Children
Save the Children Action Network
Share our Strength
National WIC Association
YMCA of the USA
American Academy of Pediatrics
On April 22, 2016, the First Focus Campaign for Children sent a letter to members of the U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee strongly stating its opposition of the Improving Child Nutrition and Education Act of 2016.
We believe healthy nutrition is an essential building block of a healthy childhood and that no child in America should ever go hungry. Students who have access to healthy and nutritious food perform better in school. Twenty percent of American children live in poverty and more than 15 million children live in food-insecure households. Child nutrition programs play an essential role in providing healthy meals to kids both in and out of school.
As introduced, the House Improving Child Nutrition and Education Act of 2016 (H.R. 5003) would put access to many essential children's food programs at risk. The bill also weakens nutrition standards that help children thrive academically and developmentally. Specifically, the provisions to increase both verification requirements and community eligibility thresholds will undoubtedly result in children losing free and reduced price meals during the school day.
We must continue to improve access to healthy and nutritious foods for all kids, rather than create additional barriers for the families who need it most.
Statement for the Record for FY17 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bills
On April 15, 2016, the First Focus Campaign for Children submitted a Statement for the Record to the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health & Human Services, Education, and related agencies.
There are more than 200 distinct child and family programs and the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health & Human Services and Education has jurisdiction over many. Every year for the last ten years, First Focus has published an annual Children’s Budget book that offers a detailed analysis and guide to federal spending levels and priorities on children and families.
Last year’s Children’s Budget 2015 showed that the share of federal spending dedicated to children fell to just 7.89 percent, down from its highest level of 8.5 percent in 2010. Consequently, the federal share of discretionary spending dedicated to children has dropped by 7.2 percent over the last five years.
In its April 15 Statement for the Record, the Campaign for Children asked Congress to increase funding for several critical programs that directly impact children and their families.
Currently, immigrant parents who are ineligible for a Social Security Number (SSN) pay their taxes using an Individual Identification Number, and are able to claim the CTC and its refundable portion for qualifying children. By requiring a SSN, more than 5 million children living in low-income immigrant families, the vast majority of whom are U.S. Citizens, would be directly harmed.
The CTC and the ACTC were designed to benefit children, and we are opposed to any change in eligibility that would undermine the best interest of children.