Voters need to keep children’s issues, including health and social welfare, in mind as they head to the ballot box, a coalition of advocacy groups and professional associations said on Tuesday. (No, ED in ’08 wasn’t one of the groups. This time.)
The coalition of 30 organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the National Association of Social Workers, and Pre-K Now, launched “Step Up for Kids Day.” The campaign included local events in all 50 states and the District of Columbia to get voters, policymakers, and candidates thinking about children’s issues, including child abuse, infant mortality, childhood poverty, as well as the need to increase access to the Head Start preschool program and quality afterschool programs.
The groups are hoping that “the next two months will see the word ‘children’ interjected into the priority issues facing this country that the next president wants to address,” said Michael R. Petit, the founder of Every Child Matters, a Washington-based youth advocacy organization. “We are looking for a kid friendly, family friendly federal budget to be submitted next February or March to the American people.”
He said the organizations have contacted the moderators of the upcoming presidential debates to try and get questions on children’s issues added to the mix. Here’s hoping that effort succeeds; it will give Campaign K-12 something to write about.