Sunday, September 26, 2021

Play

New Yorkers voice concerns about the creation of not one, but two draft maps for congressional and state voting districts; and providers ask the Supreme Court to act on Texas' new abortion law.

Play

The January 6th committee subpoenas former Trump officials; a Senate showdown looms over the debt ceiling; the CDC okays COVID boosters for seniors; and advocates testify about scams targeting the elderly.

Play

A new Oklahoma museum honors tribal nations, while Iowa's history is back on the blacktop; mixed news on COVID-19 comes with a warning about unconventional drugs; and electric cars and buses are coming to rural America.

Report Suggests FL Gains in Child Well-Being Could be Temporary

Play

Monday, June 21, 2021   

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- An annual report on child well-being underscores the need in Florida for specific action to repair the damage caused by the pandemic.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation Kids Count Data Book found 18% of Florida children living in poverty in 2019, which shows improvement over the last ten years.

Norín Dollard, director of Florida Kids Count, noted those gains could take a hit in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, as 15% of adults with children said their households sometimes or always do not have enough to eat.

"We were going into it in a reasonable way, but definitely, families are struggling," Dollard explained. "And Black and brown families are struggling disproportionately more than their white counterparts."

A closer look revealed 37% of Black households reporting not enough to eat, compared to 10% for whites and 9% for Latinos. Overall, the Kids Count Data Book ranked Florida 35th for child wellbeing.

The report cited one area of improvement, as more children living with parents who are employed, but the data was gathered before the pandemic.

The report recommended hard-hit communities of color be prioritized in the COVID-19 recovery, and income supports that help families be expanded.

Leslie Boissiere, vice president of external affairs for the Foundation, noted under the American Rescue Plan, the Child Tax Credit was increased and restructured to put money in the hands of lower-income families as early as next month.

"For families with children under the age of six, it's $300 a month that those families will be receiving," Boissiere observed. "So, at a time when families are concerned with being able to pay their mortgage, or to pay their rent or to provide food for their families, it's a significant amount."

According to the report, more than one in eight adults with children, or 13%, said they didn't have health insurance in March. Dollard emphasized parents without health coverage tend to have kids who are also uninsured.

She commended a new Florida law, which expanded some Medicaid coverage to new mothers in the state.

"Although we made strides this session for getting Medicaid extended for postpartum moms up to a year, expanding Medicaid would go a long way to helping families," Dollard contended.

Since the pandemic, the Children's Home Society predicts one in four kids in Florida will be living in poverty, an addition of 210,000 children.

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
The climate resilience package includes $1.5 billion for measures to better defend the state against wildfires. (Peter Buschmann/U.S. Forest Service)

Environment

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Climate activists are praising Gov. Gavin Newsom for signing a $15 billion climate action package Thursday, but argued he …


Social Issues

BROOKLYN, N.Y. -- Some New Yorkers are voicing concerns about the creation of not one, but two draft maps for congressional, State Senate and …

Social Issues

DES MOINES, Iowa -- There is strong public support in Iowa to enact a state law that criminalizes elder abuse, a topic also being discussed by law …


Geothermal energy is produced by drilling deep into the earth's bedrock, pumping in water, and using the resulting steam to generate power. (Utah FORGE)

Environment

SALT LAKE CITY -- A researcher at the University of Utah said plans for generating renewable energy should include a power source right under our feet…

Social Issues

CHICAGO -- Advocates for immigrants and refugees in Illinois traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to push for a pathway to citizenship for up to …

Arkansas farmers produce more than 9 billion pounds of rice each year. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Arkansas produces more rice than any other state, and a new grant will help farmers explore ways to transition the industry to …

Social Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. -- North Dakota lawmakers in charge of redistricting have approved a preliminary draft of new legislative boundaries, but voters' …

Social Issues

SANTA FE, N.M. -- A New Mexico legislator is optimistic a bill will pass in the 2022 session to prohibit life sentences for juveniles convicted of …

 

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