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A Valentine Gift for Minnesota Kids

February 14, 2007


Children's advocates say the best Valentine gift for Minnesota and the nation's kids today would be health insurance for the more than nine million who don't have it. Comments from Mark Kimball, spokesman, Children's Defense Fund of Minnesota.

The Children's Defense Fund says it has the perfect Valentine's gift for kids. Minnesota spokesman Mark Kimball says it's access to health care, whatever their economic status...


"We're asking members of Congress to insure every kid. There are 9-million of them that don't have health insurance, in Minnesota and across the country. And, we need to change that. That's unacceptable."

He says in Minnesota, kids under six are the fastest growing group without health insurance. And, all children deserve to start life healthy.


Kimball says good health is critical to childhood development and success in life.

"Kids without health insurance often skip vital pre-natal visits to their doctor. They don't get the immunizations that they need. And, this can hamper them their whole life, it can cause long-term health problems. But, it also hurts their ability to learn in school, because they're not as healthy."

Kimball says lawmakers can help cover uninsured kids by strengthening the State Children's Health Insurance Program, which is up for renewal. He says while it's helped, budget shortfalls and a difficult enrollment process have prevented millions of eligible kids from getting in.


(longer, unedited Kimball cut)

"...whole state."

start life healthy.

The Children's Defense Fund says it has the perfect Valentine's gift for kids. Jim Wishner has more...


Kimball is at 651-227-6121. More online at www.childrensdefense.org/healthy_child


Jim Wishner/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - MN