The Children's Defense Fund Leave No Child Behind® mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities. Full Mission Statement »
Two months have now passed since Congress let funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) expire and 9 million children and their parents are still waiting for funding to be extended. Sadly, once again children are being held hostage to political debates. Created specifically for children, CHIP’s benefits and provider networks ensure children in working families with higher income eligibility than Medicaid have access to child-appropriate services, providers, specialists, and facilities. The historically strong bipartisan support for CHIP continues with a commitment to a strong five-year extension of CHIP, but politics, other priorities and disagreements over pay-fors have kept Congress from moving forward on CHIP. As a result, agencies and families are truly in crisis mode as states are being forced to use dwindling dollars to plan to shut down their programs and families just at holiday time are being warned they might lose the health care their children depend on to survive and thrive. Congress must move CHIP forward now. Please call (877) 233-9025 TODAY and urge your Senators and Representatives to pass a strong, five-year extension of CHIP NOW that is not accompanied by harmful offsets. We’re so close to the finish line. There is bipartisan support for CHIP and 9 million children and families are counting on it.
For the first time, this report shows that by investing an additional 2 percent of the federal budget into existing programs and policies that increase employment, make work pay, and ensure children’s basic needs are met, the nation could reduce child poverty by 60 percent and lift 6.6 million children out of poverty.
The United States has the second highest child poverty rate among 35 industrialized countries despite having the largest economy in the world. A child in the United States has a 1 in 5 chance of being poor and the younger she is the poorer she is likely to be. A child of color, who will be in the majority of U.S. children in 2020, is more than twice as likely to be poor as a White child. This is unacceptable and unnecessary. Growing up poor has lifelong negative consequences, decreasing the likelihood of graduating from high school and increasing the likelihood of becoming a poor adult, suffering from poor health, and becoming involved in the criminal justice system. These impacts cost the nation at least half a trillion dollars a year in lost productivity and increased health and crime costs. Letting a fifth of our children grow up poor prevents them from having equal opportunities to succeed in life and robs the nation of their future contributions.
Happy, Healthy and Ready to Learn: Insure All Children! Toolkit
If asking parents this simple question could help ensure children stay healthier, do better in school, and even save a child's life, should schools do it? More and more districts around the country are answering with a resounding yes! CDF and AASA, The School Superintendents Association, have just released Happy, Healthy and Ready to Learn: Insure All Children! a toolkit to help schools and districts connect children to health care coverage as part of routine school enrollment. The toolkit offers a clear set of steps, useful tools, tips and lessons learned that we hope superintendents, school districts, teachers and parents across the country will embrace and make connecting uninsured children to health coverage through schools routine in America. Get started now to help #InsureAllChildren.
Having health insurance makes a huge difference for children in school. Schools can make a difference by identifying uninsured students and connecting them to health insurance.
Hear former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell and former U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. speak about the importance of this work at the event highlighting the Happy, Healthy and Ready to Learn: Insure All Children! toolkit by CDF and AASA, The School Superintendents Association. Get started today!