Senate on Right Path with Early Ed Investment
The following op-ed by California United Way leaders was published in the Santa Cruz Sentinal on May 31, 2014.
A state Senate proposal to make a major investment in high-quality early learning for low-income children is an opportunity to make California a place where all kids get a fair start. The Senate proposal calls for establishment of the California Pre-kindergarten Program, a multi-year reinvestment package in California's early learning systems. It would provide access for 234,000 low-income 4-year-olds to high-quality pre-K and open channels for younger kids as well.
This would have a profound impact on the future for so many low-income children and their families. United Way's vision is a caring, engaged and vibrant community where families and individuals achieve their full potential through education, health and financial stability. Over the years, we have learned that to reach that goal, children must start school prepared to learn. But for far too many children in our community, that isn't yet possible.
Governor’s May Budget Revision Continues to Invest in K-12 Education while Missing an Opportunity to Improve Access to Health Care and Restore Cuts to Vital Services that Worked
May 14, 2014
Sacramento, CA—While the Governor’s May Budget Revision continues investment in K-12 education, similar investments in health programs and initiatives that help families achieve financial self-sufficiency are needed to strengthen opportunities for low-income families. California’s United Ways work throughout the state to improve health, education, and financial stability in our communities, and we know that success in any one of these areas is affected by progress in the others. United Ways of California (UWCA) urges the Governor and legislature to work together through the budget process to restore health and human services programs that are crucial to achieve these results.
UWCA applauds the Governor for his continued commitment to our schools on maintaining the core priorities outlined in his Budget for K-12 schools paying down the “Wall of Debt” and investing significantly in the new Local Control Funding Formula. We support the Governor’s leadership to create a continuous appropriation for LCFF, ensuring that the formula continues to be implemented on schedule in future years. UWCA also deeply appreciates his proposed investment of $26.7 million for the K-12 High Speed Network to provide technical assistance and grants to local educational agencies; this is a good start on addressing the technology requirements necessary for successful Common Core implementation.
Governor's Budget Proposal is a Good Start, But Doesn't Do Enough to Help Low-Income Families
January 9, 2014
Los Angeles, CA — California’s finances are more solid than they have been for several years, thanks in no small part to Governor Brown’s leadership. While the Governor’s proposed budget increases investment in K-12 education, similar investments in health programs and initiatives that help families achieve financial self-sufficiency are needed to strengthen opportunities for low-income families, which are essential to California’s overall competitiveness and well being. California’s United Ways work throughout the state to improve health, education, and financial stability in our communities, and we know that success in any one of these areas is affected by progress in the others. United Ways of California (UWCA) urges the Governor and legislature to work together through the budget process to restore health and human services programs that are crucial to achieve these results.
UWCA applauds the Governor for his continued commitment to our schools evidenced by his proposal to provide $10 billion in 2014, including $4.5 billion toward the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), enough to eliminate more than 28 percent of the remaining funding gap. We support the Governor’s legislative proposal to create a continuous appropriation for LCFF, ensuring that the formula continues to be implemented on schedule in future years. UWCA also deeply appreciates his proposed investment in the state’s higher education system to maintain the quality and affordability of one of California’s greatest strengths.
United Ways of California is Proud to Partner with Covered California on Outreach and Education
May 14, 2013
Los Angeles, CA—United Ways of California (UWCA) issued the following statement today in response to being named one of the first recipients of Covered California’s Outreach and Education Grant Program.
United Ways of California is delighted to be named a recipient of Covered California’s Outreach and Education Grants. We look forward to working with Covered California to provide Californians with the information they need about the health coverage options available to them and connecting them to resources to enroll.
As part of this Outreach and Education grant, United Ways of California, in partnership with local United Ways, seeks to work with: 1) our business and workplace partners to reach the employees who due to their status as part-time, contract or seasonal employees are not eligible for employer sponsored insurance; 2) educational institutions including universities, community colleges, and technical schools; and 3) other United Way initiatives and programs such as the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) programs, health fairs in the community and on campuses. All strategies will reach eligible Californians over 138% of the federal poverty line.
United Ways of California Reacts to Governor Brown's Budget Proposal
January 10, 2013
Los Angeles, CA –United Ways of California (UWCA) issued the following statement today relating to children’s health, education and family financial stability in response to Governor Jerry Brown’s budget proposal. The Governor’s proposed 2013-2014 budget contains a number of major changes that will affect children and families.
After several years of harsh budgets that imposed significant cuts to the programs that families rely on, UWCA is pleased to see that the Governor’s proposed budget appears to usher in an era of reinvesting in California’s future. While this budget is by no means ideal for California’s most vulnerable populations, it inspires more hope than budgets in recent years, and smartly begins to rebuild our damaged health, education, and human services budgets.
United Ways of California Congratulates Governor Jerry Brown on Passage of Proposition 30
November 7, 2012
California Voters have responded to Governor Brown’s call for a Temporary Tax Hike to Save Schools
South Pasadena, CA – With the passage of Proposition 30 in the November 6 Presidential election, California will prevent $5.3 billion in trigger cuts to K-12 schools and $500 million in cuts to California’s public universities. Peter Manzo, President & CEO of United Ways of California stated “California has cut or deferred $20 billion from our schools and colleges in the past four years, despite having the ninth largest economy in the world. With the passage of Proposition 30, schools will be spared from losing as much as a month of school days and avoid massive cuts to educational programs our children need to succeed.”
United Ways of California Commends Supreme Court Decision on Affordable Care Act
June 27, 2012
United Ways of California hails the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act as good news for millions of California children, families, and businesses who will benefit from many of the provisions of this health care legislation, some of which are already helping more children and individuals access health care. UWCA applauds the work that California’s Health Benefit Exchange and other agencies have done to date in California to implement this important law and calls on California policymakers to continue the state’s substantial progress toward implementation and ultimately, comprehensive, affordable health coverage for every child in the state.
United Ways of California Reacts to Governor Brown's May Revise Budget Proposal
Major Changes to Health and Human Services Could Harm Children and Families
May 14, 2012
Los Angeles, CA
United Ways of California issued the following statement May 14, 2012 relating to children’s health, education and family financial stability in response to Governor Jerry Brown’s May Revise budget proposal. The Governor’s revised budget contains an alarming number of major changes that will affect children and families. On behalf of United Ways of California, Pete Manzo, President & CEO, said:
"This revised budget calls the question of what kind of California we all want to live in - do we believe we can again provide first-class educational opportunities, comprehensive health coverage for children and individuals, effective assistance to parents struggling to support their families, and help our state be more competitive in a global economy?
United Ways of California Reacts to Governor Brown's Budget Proposal
Major Changes to Health and Human Services Could Harm Children and Families with No Guarantee of Success
January 6, 2012
Los Angeles, California
United Ways of California issued the following statement today relating to children’s health, education and family financial stability in response to Governor Jerry Brown’s budget proposal. The Governor’s budget contains an alarming number of major changes that will affect children and families.
“We understand California’s dire fiscal situation, and we appreciate that the Governor’s budget does not attempt to reach balance only through cuts, but the fact remains that even in the best case, this budget further jeopardizes the future of millions of vulnerable California children and their families by threatening loss of health coverage and care, increasing obstacles to self-sufficiency and shrinking educational pathways.” said Peter Manzo, President & CEO of United Ways of California.
CPUC Action Would Ensure 100% 2-1-1 Coverage For All California Residents In Times of Disasters and Emergencies
2-1-1 Available to Provide Timely, Critical Non-Life-threatening Information in Times of Disaster. Will Help Reserve 911 for Life-saving Emergency Calls.
September 13, 2011
San Francisco, California
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) last week voted unanimously to approve a petition from 2-1-1 California to ensure 2-1-1 will be available to connect all Californians to vital information and referral services in times of disaster. Currently, 2-1-1 is available 24/7, 365 days a year in 30 counties, accessible to 91% of all Californians. But many rural communities do not have access to 2-1-1. The action will enable 100% availability of 2-1-1 to California residents in the event of a disaster or emergency.
The CPUC also appointed 2-1-1 California as the “Lead Entity” to coordinate 2-1-1 service statewide. 2-1-1 services are provided by local and regional 2-1-1 service providers, and 2-1-1 California is a partnership developed to coordinate their work statewide on an informal basis. Assigning 2-1-1 California as the lead entity will help ensure a more formal coordinated telecommunications, IT, software and organizational infrastructure to better connect and coordinate regional 2-1-1’s statewide and to expand 2-1-1’s during emergencies and non-emergencies alike.
California Budget Deal Gambles with Children’s Health
June 27, 2012
SACRAMENTO, CA – A coalition of leading children’s health advocates expressed outrage with the budget passed today by the Legislature, which jeopardizes access to health care for California children. This budget will eliminate the Healthy Families Program and shift nearly 900,000 children
“With this short-sighted decision, the Administration and Legislature are experimenting with the health of 900,000 children,” said Peter Manzo, President & CEO of United Ways of California. “Eliminating California's popular and successful Healthy Families Program is risky. The concerns
about this proposal expressed by legislators today necessitate instituting a strong oversight mechanism to make sure there actually is a doctor available before each child is transitioned.”
Clock is Ticking on Children’s Health Coverage
Legislators and the Governor Need to Step Up and Prevent Hundreds of Thousands of Kids from Losing Health Insurance
August 23, 2011
On behalf of the state’s leading children’s advocates, Wendy Lazarus, Founder and Co-President of The Children’s Partnership, released the following statement in response to recent communications regarding a potential 37 percent shortfall in California’s Healthy Families budget for the current fiscal year.
Last week, the Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board, which administers the Healthy Families Program, responded to an August 12 inquiry from the Department of Finance by announcing it would have no choice but to disenroll children from health coverage unless needed revenues are again approved. If California lawmakers and the Governor fail to extend an assessment on managed care plans before the end of the legislative session on September 9, Healthy Families will lose $130 million in state funds and $260 million more in federal matching funds.
Advocates to California Congressional Leaders: Find a Budget Fix that Works for Families Too
July 7, 2011
California advocacy organizations committed to improving children’s health reacted to negotiations among congressional leaders that could cut health care for children and families across the state and throughout the country. A new study released today by the National Bureau of Economic Research (link below) emphasizes how critical health coverage is for low-income families.
Human Development Report Shows Large Disparities Among Californians in the Areas of Health, Education and Income
Report illustrates the markedly different opportunities and outcomes for California residents across geography, race and gender.
Los Angeles, CA
May 17, 2011
A new report released May 17, 2011 provides, for the first time, an easy-to-understand composite number that measures the well-being of Californians in the areas of health, education and income. A Portrait of California uses the internationally recognized Human Development Index to rank how Californians are doing against key benchmarks, broken out by demographic, geographic and other distinctions. This exhaustive report was prepared by the American Human Development Project, a nonpartisan initiative that seeks to move beyond an overreliance in the U.S. on GDP as a measure of well-being.
Read the full report and find regional data here.
United Ways of California Reacts to Governor Brown's May Revised Budget Proposal
Los Angeles, CA
May 16, 2011
Peter Manzo, President & CEO of the United Ways of California, issued the following statement today in response to Governor Jerry Brown’s May revised budget proposal to merge Healthy Families into Medi-Cal (a General Fund savings of $31.2 million) and increase funding for K-12 education by $3 billion.:
“United Ways of California believes that health, education and financial stability are the building blocks for a good life, and that addressing any of those areas effectively requires attention to all. We appreciate that, while facing an enormous budget deficit, the Governor recognized the importance of education in our children’s lives by increasing funding for K – 12 education. Clearly that is a win for our kids.
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