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CDF Action Council - leading the nation since 1973 to ensure a level playing field for all children.

Monthly Newsletter - September 2009

Firearm Deaths Among Children and Teens Increase for Second Year in a Row

Firearm deaths 1979-2006CDF recently released a new report in conjunction with the latest data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showing that 3,184 children and teens died from gunfire in the United States in 2006 a six percent increase from 2005. Read our report Protect Children Not Guns 2009 to learn more about gun deaths in your state and learn how to protect children from gun violence.


Do You Know How Children Are Faring in Health Reform?

Don't let children be pushed aside by special interest groups. We need your help at this critical stage to be the voice for children. With only weeks left in this debate, CDF staff and other child advocates are on Capitol Hill this week urging Senators to ensure that any health care reform bill includes real child health reform that will guarantee all children the simple, comprehensive and affordable health and mental health care they need.

We need you to send an email to your Senators today reinforcing this message for children.

Health care reform is complicated, but ensuring that children have access to the health care they need to grow up healthy is not. No matter what type of health care system Congress decides to implement, they must make it simple for all children to enroll in affordable, head-to-toe health coverage.

We've been in touch with you over the past week about how the Senate Finance Committee is working on its health care reform bill and how you can help now to ensure children are better not worse off after health reform.  Even though the committee isn’t moving as quickly as we thought and although children really can’t wait any longer for health care reform, we're going to use this delay to our advantage to make sure all members of Congress know how important real health care reform is for all children.

As a constituent of a Senator on the Senate Finance Committee, you play a key role in obtaining real health care reform for children this year. As you probably know from our past emails, the current proposal threatens to leave millions of children worse off after health care reform. However, Senator Rockefeller (D-WV) will offer an amendment as soon as today that will take steps to make it simple for more children to enroll in affordable, head-to-toe health coverage. This could be a big step toward achieving what we have been working so hard on over the past few months—health coverage that is simple, affordable and comprehensive!

Help us take advantage of the Senate Finance Committee's delay on working through their health care reform bill take this extra time to show your support for this key amendment, whenever it reaches a vote! ! So, if you haven't already, it's not too late—please call your Senator on the Senate Finance Committee today!

Children's Health Care Reform in the News

As you know, health reform is in every newspaper lately. We’re happy to see that children’s health care reform is starting to get some attention. Check out some recent articles in, The Boston Globe, USA Today,and Politico. Looking for some blog posts about how children will be affected by health care reform? MomsRising has done a great job of rounding some up.

For the latest on how health care reform could affect children? Check out our Health Care Reform Legislative Update. Things are moving quickly on Capitol Hill and we'll continue to update this page as things change.

Children in Poverty in 2008: The New Census Numbers

childThis month, the U.S. Census Bureau released the latest data on poverty in the United States and the news is not good for children. In this economic downturn, it is no surprise that the number of children in poverty has skyrocketed. The number of children living in poverty (family of four with an income less than $22,050) increased by nearly 750,000 to 14.1 million and the number of children living in extreme poverty (family of four with an income of less than $11,025) also increased by over 500,000 to 6.3 million children. This is the biggest increase in child poverty since 1992, showing that the recession has had a deep impact on our country’s children. Read more about what the latest poverty statistics and trends mean for children.

Support Extraordinary Students — Attend a Beat the Odds Awards Event!

Beat the Odds Winner Janet RoblesCDF began the Beat the Odds program in 1990 to highlight the positive potential of young people. Too often we hear about teens getting into trouble, dropping out of school, becoming involved with drugs, crime or gangs, or becoming parents too soon. Over the past 29 years CDF has awarded hundreds of scholarships to students throughout the United States.

You can help support outstanding high school students by attending one of three Beat the Odds events this fall. Not only will these awards events celebrate the scholarship recipients and their accomplishments, but by publicly honoring these young people who have persevered through tremendous adversity provides positive role models for youths in similar situations. Learn more about events in Washington, DC, New York City and Los Angeles.


Early Childhood Development Legislative Update

legislative updateOn September 18, 2009, the U.S. House of Representatives took a significant step forward for very young children and passed the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2009 (H.R. 3221). CDF strongly supports Title IV of the Act, the Early Learning Challenge Fund, which invests $1 billion per year for eight years in challenge grants for states to build high-quality early learning systems for children from birth through age five. The Early Learning Challenge Fund takes a much-needed step toward bridging the early learning gap that leaves millions of children unable to access the quality early education programs they need and deserve. Learn more about this important piece of legislation and its status in Congress.

sweatshirtsStay Warm this Fall and Show Your Support! CDF Sweatshirts Now on Sale!

Temperatures are starting to drop and what better way to stay warm and show your support for all children than with a CDF sweatshirt. Our sweatshirts are now on sale, so buy yours today! Adult and children's sizes are available in grey and white.



You're Invited: National Conference on Transforming High Poverty Communities to Improve Life Outcomes for Children

Harlem Children ZonePrompted and energized by the Obama Administration's commitment to support effective strategies to improve life outcomes for children in high poverty areas through a national Promise Neighborhoods Initiative, Harlem Children's Zone (HCZ) and PolicyLink are proud to announce Changing the Odds: Learning from the Harlem Children's Zone Model, a two-day conference on November 9-10, 2009 in New York City. More than 1,000 leaders from non-profit, community, government, and philanthropic organizations will participate, with a focus on how to transform their communities by replicating the innovative HCZ model. CDF President Marian Wright Edelman will be a keynote speaker at the event.

Learn more about the Harlem Children Zone model and register for the event on the Harlem Children's Zone website.

Mrs. Edelman Joins the Dalai Lama at Mind & Life Institute Event

Dalai Lama On October 8, Mrs. Edelman will join the Dalai Lama for a powerful discussion about how our individual and collective responsibility to humanity as a whole, and to the environment, will be essential to our survival in the globally interdependent world of the 21st century. They will also discuss how to prepare young people to take up and meet these challenges through novel forms of teaching and learning such as those involving contemplative practices in both formal and informal educational environments.

Learn more about the Educating World Citizens for the 21st Century conference and Register today at the Mind & Life Institute's website.

You're Invited: Bridge to Benefits Conference

Bridge to BenefitsJoin CDF-Minnesota for a Bridge to Benefits (B2B) Conference on October 20, 2009. This conference is a chance for Bridge to Benefits partners from Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota to learn about recent updates to the B2B project, promising B2B screening practices, and B2B work support programs. The conference will also share recent data from CDF-MN’s 2009 KIDS COUNT report and make the case for using B2B to make policy changes.

In addition to current partners and funders, organizations that are new to Bridge to Benefits are also encouraged to attend. The conference will include large group sessions and two break-out sessions.

Registration is free, but attendees must register online.

Senator Menendez Meets with CDF-NY and Local Youths

Senator MenendezOn September 11, students from two Newark, New Jersey charter schools met with Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) to discuss why children need to have a voice in health care reform. The students presented the Senator with letters and a banner, which he agreed to take to the floor of the Senate. Senator Menendez listened to the concerns of the students and a story of a youth in New Jersey who was not able to obtain necessary health care because he was uninsured. As the Senator left, the students played the drums as a send-off to encourage the Senator to be a champion for children's health.

Visit Senator Menendez’s website to learn more about the work he is doing to advocate for real health care reform for children.

2009, Children's Defense Fund Action Council, 25 E Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001 | 1 (800) 233-1200 | Unsubscribe
The Children's Defense Fund Action Council's Leave No Child Behind mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start, and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities.