Talk to legislatures about keeping funding for children

Published 8:55 pm Thursday, January 29, 2009

Soon the legislature will meet and begin working on the most challenging budget in recent memory. Children First Foundation (CFF) with other child advocacy agencies fear the worst: attempts to make cuts to agencies that serve the children and families of this state.

As our elected officials weigh the consequences of the decisions they will make, we must continue to remind them that Alabama ranks 47th in the nation for child well being. Alabama consistently scores in the bottom for infant mortality and child death rate. Our state struggles with one of the highest teen drop-out rates in the nation and we have one of the highest percentages of working poor. Agencies and programs that protect children should not and cannot be where the cuts are made simply because children cannot vote.

The lives and well being of children in our state must be protected. We cannot provide the opportunities needed to improve the lives of children if we remove the small percentage of funding directly applied for that purpose. CFF’s board calls on all Alabamians to contact their legislators now and urge them to remember the longterm consequences of cutting funding to programs that assists children and families. We must and will use our voices to speak for those that need it most.

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Christy Mehaffey

Executive Director, Children First Foundation