Weekly News - March 5, 2018

Advocacy Day Success!

Thank you to everyone who made their way to Hartford for the Alliance's annual Advocacy Day. Attendees packed the Old Judiciary Room to hear more about the budget impact on young children, the state of Care4Kids, child health and well-being, workforce and safety issues, and what advocates can do beyond advocacy day to keep early childhood issues in the minds of legislators. Several legislators joined us, including Rep. Michelle Cook, Rep. Bobby Sanchez, Rep. Noreen Kokoruda, Rep. Matthew Lesser and Rep. Tim Ackert. Many attendees asked if the slides from the PowerPoint presentations would be available - they can be found HERE on our website. We also have photos from the event that can be found on our FB page (search CT Early Childhood Alliance). If you have photos from the day that you would like to share, please feel free to email them to Jessica at jessica@earlychildhoodalliance.com. And thank you to everyone who shared photos with the hashtag #CTECAdvocacy18 on social media! 

Legislative Update - Public Hearings Coming to a Close

Next Wednesday, March 14, will be the last public hearing of the short session. The Education Committee will be hearing testimony on two bills for the ECE community. The Alliance will decide our position on these bills at our Monday Early Childhood Legislative Caucus meeting.  For more information about the caucus, please contact Merrill@earlychildhoodalliance.com

This bill would change the BA requirement for teachers in state supported Early Care & Education programs to an Associates degree by 2020.
This bill would give OEC the power to prioritize infants and toddlers for Care4Kids and give OEC the power to set rates for School Readiness and CDC's.  Currently School Readiness Rates are set by the legislature.  

Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Alert

From National Women's Law Center: We have heard from allied offices on Capitol Hill that it would be useful to reiterate that Congress needs to follow-through with the bipartisan budget deal’s agreement of a $5.8 billion CCDBG increase over two years. So, we need the field to keep at it to ensure that the doubling of CCDBG funds continues to be a priority as the appropriations process proceeds. The decisions about allocations or how much each subcommittee receives to fund programs under its jurisdiction are still not finalized. If you have not called your members yourself, please do so now. Please call your U.S. Senators (Senators Blumenthal) and Murphy) and your Congressional representatives, ie, Rep. Larson, Rep. Courtney, Rep. DeLauro, Rep. Himes, and Rep. Esty.

Here’s a script:

As a supporter of child care and early learning, I urge you to ensure that the Labor Health and Human Services and Education allocation is sufficient to sustain the CCDBG increase included in the budget deal as well as the highest possible amount for other early learning programs. We hope that Congress is able to complete the FY 2018 process by March 23rd so that states can use the $5.8 billion over two years  to help more mothers work, more children have a strong early learning experience and more providers receive the support they need.

Middlesex Coalition for Children March Meeting Canceled

While Mother Nature left plenty of cleanup for us on March 8, the Middlesex Coaltion for Children had to cancel its monthly meeting. The next meeting will be scheduled for Thusday, April 12 at deKoven House, 27 Washington Street, Middletown

SNAP Webinar Friday, March 9

From the Federal Scoop: There will be a webinar on Friday, March 9, from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m., to learn more about the potential threats to SNAP in the 2018 House Farm Bill. SNAP (which stands for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) is our nation’s largest and most effective anti-hunger program. SNAP cuts in the House Farm Bill could be the opening volley in a larger effort to take away food, housing, health care, and other basic necessities from people who are struggling, all under the misleading banner of “welfare reform” or “workforce development.” Please note that this webinar is geared towards state and local advocates; it is not for legislative staff or members of the media and is not on the record.

CT Mission of Mercy Dental Clinic Set for 2018

The 2018 CT Mission of Mercy (CTMOM) free dental clinic will take place April 20-21 at Torrington High School. The two-day clinic offers free dental services to the underserved and uninsured in Connecticut, who would otherwise go without dental care. The Connecticut Foundation for Dental Outreach, in collaboration with the Connecticut State Dental Association, held its first CTMOM in 2008. In New Haven in 2017, the event served 1,472 patients, with a total value on donated care at $1,005,103. For more information or to volunteer, click HERE

Childhood Conversations/Together We Will Conference Registration is Open!

The annual Childhood Conversations Conference and the Together We Will Conference are working together to bring you one comprehensive conference on Friday, April 6 and Saturday, April 7, at the Hartford/Windsor Marriott! Registration is open! You can register online at www.childhoodconversations.com.

Support for the Alliance comes from of our members and our funders: The William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund, Connecticut Health Foundation, Connecticut Community Foundation, Children's Fund of Connecticut, CT Early Childhood Funder Collaborative, a project of CT Council of Philanthropy; The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut; Community Foundation of Greater New Britain; Community Foundation of Greater New Haven; and The Fund for Greater Hartford.