CWDA Commends Speaker & Caucus’ Attention to Child Poverty & Anti-Poverty Strategies

Press release

Frank Mecca, Executive Director of the County Welfare Directors Association of California (CWDA), issued the following statement on the release of Speaker John Pérez and the Assembly Democratic Caucus’ 2014-15 Budget Blueprint:

“We commend Speaker John Pérez and the Assembly Democratic Caucus for highlighting the crisis of millions of children living in poverty across our communities, and outlining effective and practical ways we can improve their lives. Child poverty is a terrible plague that haunts children and families for generations. Mountains of research have conclusively proven that children who suffer the trauma of economic insecurity, destitution, hunger and homelessness too often become adults who deal with the same challenges. We see this every day in our schools and county human service offices.

Clearly, children and families pay the ultimate price for poverty, but our economy suffers too – staggering costs to health, social services and corrections, and billions of dollars annually in lost productivity. And despite California’s improving economy, we have the highest child poverty rate in the country. That’s why we applaud the Speaker and Caucus for identifying strategic, research-supported approaches – such as the Earned Income Tax Credit and adequate child care and employment training support – that can be implemented while prudently building a reserve and paying down debt.

Anti-poverty strategies are critical to achieving the goal of long-term economic health for our communities and our state. We look forward to collaborating with the Speaker and Legislature on proposals for the 2014-15 State Budget.”

The County Welfare Directors Association of California (CWDA) is a nonprofit association representing the human service directors from each of California’s 58 counties. The Association’s mission is to promote a human services system that encourages self-sufficiency of families and communities, and protects vulnerable children and adults from abuse and neglect.