Children’s Defense Fund is working for a future where our children play freely in parks, walk safely to bus stops, and learn in schools as sanctuaries, with neighbors and public servants as guardians of their well-being. A key aspect of that work is pushing for public policy on Capitol Hill and in state legislatures that will create the conditions for young people to thrive. Indeed, one of the legacies we’ve been entrusted with in this moment, is CDF’s history of seeding the policy landscape from the leading edge.
So, as we celebrate CDF’s 50th anniversary this year, we’re excited to gather leaders and advocates and launch the policy agenda that will guide us from a bold legacy toward a bright future. Join us November 2,-3 for Child Well-Being in America: A National Policy Forum, at the Howard University in Washington, D.C.
The forum will feature policymakers, social change advocates, and educators, committed to multi-issue advocacy and organizing for children and families. Through plenaries and breakouts over the two days, we will explore a bold, new public policy strategies and set of leading questions which contend for the voice and hope for America’s children.
Our vision for the future is often clouded by children’s challenges in the moment.
While lawmakers reached an agreement to temporarily fund the federal government, the continuing resolution they passed will not support America’s childcare centers, putting more than 70,000 childcare programs at risk of closure due to an October 1 expiration of more than $24 billion in federal pandemic relief funding. (Check out my comments on this issue from an interview last week with Roland Martin.)
School boards across the country continue to bend to the pressure of those who are actively banning books that highlight America’s diversity. (Here’s a list of banned books we love by the way.)
As chronicled by our faith partners at Sojourners, the U.S. Census Bureau revealed two weeks ago that America’s child poverty rate more than doubled in 2022 thanks to the expiration of the expanded Child Tax Credit.
Young people need us to sharpen our policy analysis, boldly articulate our vision, and build our bases of support. Their interests too often go unheard by powerbrokers. Delivering for them is the focus of Child Well-Being in America. Attendees will leave activated (and agitated) to develop and further groundbreaking strategies to serve, support, and advocate with children and youth for years to come.
This work cannot wait. I am excited to see all we can accomplish together. Join us.