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Uncovering America's methamphetamine history; PA Early Intervention programs vital for child development; measuring long-term impact of the O.J. Simpson trial on media literacy.

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President Biden's name could be left off the ballot in Alabama and Ohio, the Justice Dept. mandates background checks for gun show purchases, and Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds moves to allow state police to arrest undocumented migrants.

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Housing advocates fear rural low-income folks who live in aging USDA housing could be forced out, small towns are eligible for grants to enhance civic participation, and North Carolina's small and Black-owned farms are helped by new wind and solar revenues.

Report: WA children of color continue to experience inequities

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Thursday, January 18, 2024   

Washington state's kids see disparities in well-being across racial groups.

That's according to the Race for Results report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

Despite the inequities, the report finds there have been improvements nationally in six of the eleven indicators since the first analysis a decade ago.

Stephan Blanford, Ph.D, is executive director of the Washington state-based Children's Alliance.

He said the state is starting to see results from the 2021 Fair Start for Kids, which expanded access to child care and early learning. However, Blanford noted there affordability gaps remain.

"Kids that have high-quality child care experiences do much better in K-12 and have much better life outcomes," said Blanford, "and so it's critically important that that access be provided amongst all kids, particularly kids who have the biggest challenges."

Blanford said the state is also facing a crisis when it comes to access to behavioral health services for kids.

The report measured children's well-being from racial groups including Native American, Asian and Pacific Islander, Black, latino, and white.

Congress reached a deal this week to bring back the pandemic-era Child Tax Credit.

Leslie Boissiere, vice president for external affairs with Annie E. Casey, said programs like this that benefit everyone are a good first step.

"We know that these universal policies are very effective for all kids and families and it's important that we support all kids," said Boissiere. "But we also need to understand what can we do in a targeted way for each one of the subgroups?"

Blanford said there was a focus on racial gaps immediately after George Floyd's murder in 2020, but the focus has shifted since then.

"A lot of the appetite for addressing issues of inequity seems to be waning," said Blanford, "and so it's our responsibility to keep that at the forefront."


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


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