Tuesday, February 7, 2023


Bill to expand tax credits draws on children's health data, Alaskans file petition opposing giant grocery merger, and a revised Colorado water plan prioritizes conservation.


President Biden is set to give the State of the Union address, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy calls the national debt limit the United States' greatest threat, and Kamala Harris announces new pledges to offer more economic stability in Central America.


Is bird flu, inflation or price gouging to blame for astronomical egg prices? Pregnancy can be life-changing or life-ending depending on where you live, and nine tribal schools are transforming their outdoor spaces into community gathering areas.

Kids in WA Doing Better Than Other States, But Disparities Remain


Monday, June 21, 2021   

SEATTLE -- Washington state ranks high in a new report on child well-being, but the data hides some of the disparities that exist in the state.

The annual KIDS COUNT Data Book from the Annie E. Casey Foundation looks at four categories: economic well-being, education, health, and family and community. The report measured data before the pandemic in 2019, and ranks Washington 14th overall.

Dr. Stephan Blanford, executive director of the Children's Alliance, said children of color aren't faring as well.

"On almost every measure, Black and brown kids do less well, and those disparities should be of concern to all Washingtonians," Blanford asserted.

Blanford noted there are fewer children of color enrolled in early learning, for instance, which can affect their success in high school and later in life.

The state ranks fifth in the health category and Blanford applauded the state for its investment in keeping the number of uninsured children low, but pointed out racial disparities hide under the statistic as well.

According to the report, nearly 200,000 Washington children were living in poverty in 2019.

Leslie Boissiere, vice president of external affairs for the Foundation, said growing up in poverty has long-lasting effects on kids, including more social-emotional challenges.

"The stress of financial challenges on children is huge, and it's significant," Boissiere contended. "And if you look over time, those same children when they grow to be adults tend to be in lower-wage jobs. And they also tend to be more reliant on government programs."

Washington lawmakers passed an important measure for children this session: the Fair Start for Kids Act, which will make child care more affordable for families.

Blanford emphasized the measure is good for all families, although the state will still need to figure out how to find enough child-care providers to make the law possible.

"Fair Start for Kids, I think, is a game-changer because it offers increased access for lots of kids that were on the margin," Blanford explained. "That's going to be a significant number of kids who will now have that access."

Disclosure: Annie E. Casey Foundation contributes to our fund for reporting on Children's Issues, Criminal Justice, Early Childhood Education, Education, Juvenile Justice, and Welfare Reform. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
As many as 11% of eligible voters do not have the kind of identification that is required by states with strict ID requirements, according to the Brennan Center for Justice. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Secretary of State Shenna Bellows said a bill to require Maine voters to present photo identification in order to cast ballots is unnecessary and coul…

Social Issues

A bill to increase tax credits in the Commonwealth is backed up by research showing the credits lead to better nutrition for working families and bett…


Part of the deal Wyoming struck for sending its water down the Colorado River was that state residents would be able to tap electricity generated at G…

Advocates and activists from both the liberal and conservative sides are trying to encourage voter turnout for the upcoming state Supreme Court race, given the impact the outcome will have on the court's ideological balance. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Wisconsin's primary election is two weeks away, and a high-profile state Supreme Court race is on the ballot. Several advocacy groups are behind a …


A coalition of conservation groups is giving Colorado's revised state water plan a thumbs-up for its increased focus on protecting Colorado's rivers…

Last year, the Federal Trade Commission reported a 70% increase in reported fraud losses from consumers. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Victims of investment-related fraud in North Dakota could soon recoup some of their losses through a proposed restitution fund. A bill to establish …

Social Issues

West Virginia is among a handful of states with the highest increases in educational attainment between 2019 and 2021, according to a new report from …

Social Issues

The state's "divisive concepts" law is preventing educators from holding rational discussions about race relations in America, New Hampshire civil …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021