Monday, September 20, 2021


The American Rescue Plan could provide essential training to boost jobs in construction, and we explore a trauma-informed approach to preventing marijuana use in teens.


Pfizer says its vaccine is safe for children ages 5 to 11, travel restrictions soon will ease for vaccinated international visitors to the U.S., and a Texas doctor who performed an abortion under new restrictions is sued.


Lawsuits stall debt relief for America's Black farmers; Idaho hospitals using "critical care" protocols; grant money boosts rural towns in Utah and more conservation acreage could protect the iconic sage grouse.

Pandemic, High Housing Costs Could Stall Progress for ID Kids


Tuesday, June 22, 2021   

BOISE, Idaho -- A new report finds child wellbeing in Idaho had been improving since the Great Recession until COVID-19 hit.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation's Kids Count Data Book analyzed data from 2019 in four categories: economic well-being, education, health, and family and community. Overall, it ranks Idaho 16th.

Christine Tiddens, director of Idaho Voices for Children, said increasing housing costs and the pandemic threaten progress. She pointed out there was a 15% increase in the number of families struggling to pay rent between 2020 and 2021.

"While we're experiencing this decline in child poverty rates, what we're now seeing in Idaho is that these rapidly increasing and high housing costs have become a major burden on family economic well-being across the state," Tiddens observed.

The report found child poverty rates in Idaho declined from 19% in 2010 to 13% in 2019.

Tiddens noted the state is doing better in the health category.

"Idaho ranks 19th in the nation for affordable health care," Tiddens explained. "And actually, we increased and have done better than in years past, and this is due largely in part to our expanded Medicaid."

The rate of uninsured children decreased from 11% in 2010 to 5% in 2019. Idaho voters approved Medicaid expansion in 2018. Last week, child- and health-advocacy groups launched Idaho Kids Covered, to close the gap on the remaining 5% of children without insurance.

Tiddens added one important policy for families is the Child Tax Credit, which was included in the American Rescue Plan, and will go out starting in July.

While it's set to expire in a year, child advocacy groups want the tax credit to become permanent.

Leslie Boissiere, vice president of external affairs for the Foundation, said it's expected to raise as many as half of kids living in poverty above the poverty line.

"For families with children under the age of six, it's $300 a month that those families will be receiving," Boissiere explained. "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."

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
This, year the theme of Sea Otter Awareness Week is the species' key role in the mosaic of the ecosystem. (Wikimedia Commons)


MONTEREY BAY, Calif. - This week, conservation groups are celebrating Sea Otter Awareness Week with online and in-person events across the state…


LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Admission to any state park in Nevada is free this coming Saturday, as part of the first Nevada Public Lands Week - with a series …

Social Issues

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A new Redistricting Advisory Council announced last week by Gov. Tom Wolf's office will focus on reducing gerrymandering as new …

The Nature Conservancy says the U.S. loses nearly 1 million acres of forest lands each year through development and other factors, reducing nature's ability to capture and store carbon dioxide. (Adobe Stock)


DULUTH, Minn. - As Minnesota looks to address the impact of climate change on the region, land managers and policymakers are reminded of the role …

Health and Wellness

By Savanna Strott for Eye on Ohio, The Ohio Center for Journalism Broadcast version by Emily Scott for Ohio News Connection. COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio …

According to the CDC, around 181 million Americans have received COVID-19 vaccinations. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- One in five unvaccinated Kentuckians say they are open to getting the COVID-19 vaccine, according to a new poll from the …

Health and Wellness

HELENA, Mont. - It can be hard for people with disabilities to afford the assistive technology they need to perform daily activities. A program in …

Social Issues

LA CONNER, Wash. - The exhibit of an artist who depicted the lives of farmworkers in northwest Washington has been recognized for its quality…


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