Equally exciting (at least to me) is the fab Web site which -- hold on -- includes an email subscription service for news, election results, events, and news releases. Seriously, this is cool, so sign up today!
Sunday, May 31, 2009
Use of the emergency room may seen incongruous to the recently released data* that 96.5% of District's children were insured in 2007, higher than the national average of 90.9%. ER use also seems inconsistent with data related to preventive health care visits (97.6% in the past year) and preventive dental care in the past year (81.7%). The WaPo piece seems to make somewhat more sense considering that in 2007 less than half of young people, 49.7%, had a medical home compared with 57.5% nationally. This, of course, in the context of the multi-million dollar investment in medical homes, an effort led by the DC Primary Care Association (DCPCA).
All of this data, even together, makes sense if you understand the history of SCHIP in the District. Certainly, I'm no expert, but I was on the periphery of the SCHIP expansion in DC under the leadership of DC Action for Children with funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). The District's Income Maintenance Administration (IMA) in the Department of Human Services focused on getting young people and the adults in the household enrolled in DC Healthy Families, the city's SCHIP program. Major policy and practice wins were achieved including a shortened application, intensive outreach to enroll and recertify, and customized engagement of "new" populations not usually considered when talking about public benefits.
One of the most vexing and challenging aspects of health care expansion and reform is behavior change. This should come as no surprise if you have ever tried to change your behavior. It should also come as no surprise given that a good proportion of adult Medicaid recipients are hourly workers or workers with inflexible work schedules. What, in my view, we have to do now is to 1) prioritize behavior change and 2) address workforce challenges.
It is not too late to fix this problem.
*Child and Adolescent Health Measurement Initiative. 2007 National Survey of Children's Health, Data Resource Center for Child and Adolescent Health website. Retrieved [05/31/09] from www.nschdata.org)
Saturday, May 30, 2009
- Ask questions. Raising questions about what candidates think and what they would do can put issues on their radar screens and let them know that there are constituents (or potential constituents) who are interested. It can also help get beyond the fog of the general statements local candidates tend to issue. "I'll improve our public schools, etc."
- Pull together the answers and/or positions the candidates have taken. An issue-by-issue crosswalk is useful and something that can be shared.
- Encourage active grassroots involvement. While nonprofits can't engage in partisan campaigns, their supporters and clients certainly can. And, as many readers know, active involvement in campaigns opens doors later.
- Encourage everyone—supporters, clients and staff—to vote. A government relations team I've worked for has mantra that's applicable here: More legislative battles are won on election day than during an entire legislative session.
Got any more ideas to share? Email them to me and I'll add them to the running list.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Why you should participate:
[the survey] examines the physical and emotional health of children from birth through 17 years of age. Emphasis is placed on factors that may be related to the well-being of children, including medical homes, family interactions, parental health, school experiences, and neighborhood safety.
This Web conference will provide an overview of the survey methodology, discuss potential applications of the survey as well as selected findings, and provide information about accessing National- and State-level survey data online and highlight key State-level survey results. (Taken directly from email announcing the presentation.)
If you are not familiar with the survey or the 2007 results for DC, check out a recent blog post.
Proposed change to Medicaid: The Department of Health Care Finance (DCHF) issued proposed rules to establish a "Maximum Allowable Cost (MAC) program for prescription drugs covered by the Medicaid program." According to the proposal,
The MAC rate will be the maximum amount the District will reimburse a pharmacy for affected multi-source drugs. Implementation of the MAC standardizes the rate of reimbursement to pharmacies, thus encouraging pharmacies to obtain the lower priced multi-source drug for dispensing purposes. Medicaid state agencies are adopting MAC programs as a best practice initiative to contain the increasing cost of prescription drugs needed by Medicaid recipients. The MAC program will work together with the Preferred Drug List to help DHCF to obtain the lowest price for prescription drugs, consistent with quality of care standards. DHCF estimates savings of more than $4 million dollars from the new MAC.
DCHF plans to take final rulemaking action in no fewer than 30 days from the date of publication. The public is encouraged to comment and those details are in the proposed rules. (See page 4186)
State Superintendent of Education proposes rules on due process: These rules describe the procedures for resolution meetings and due process hearings. OSSE plans to take final rulemaking action in no fewer than 30 days from the date of publication. The public is encouraged to comment and those details are in the proposed rules. (See page 4208)
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Four public witnesses testified today:
- Robert Malson, Chief Executive Officer of the DC Hospital Association (DCHA)
- Marley Greiner, brought in to testify by child welfare advocates opposing the bill
- Joyce A. Fourth Clemons, Communications Director of the DC Campaign To Prevent Teen Pregnancy
- Susan Ogden, Domestic Infant Program Director at Adoptions Together
Dr. Roque Gerald and Loren Ganoe, both from CFSA, represented the executive.
No matter the objections from two of the witnesses, seems that this bill will go forward with some modifications. DCHA's Bob Malson and CFSA are expected to pitch in with additional information and some TA. Final passage will make CM Catania very happy indeed.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
- Vialetta Brown, DC Board of Elections
- Arlin Budoo, DC Board of Elections
- Adam Fogel, FairVote
- Phillip Pannell, DC Democratic State Committee and Ward 8 Committeeman
Come out and learn about current and proposed voter registration and Election Day procedures and ideas from a uniquely qualified panel. The meeting will be held at 12:30 pm at Ward Memorial AME Church, 241 42nd St, NE.
The report summarizes the testimony of the 13 public witnesses; the majority of them supported the appointment. Also summarized is the testimony of the appointee; his testimony is here. Questions from committee members concerned meeting the LaShawn benchmarks; Council input into outcome goals for CFSA; placement stability and disruptions; prevention; performance-based contracting; and the vision for the agency, particularly about how it will be functioning in three years. CM Wells concluded his questions by reminding Dr. Gerald that the committee will hold an oversight hearing in January 2010 on the FY 2010 BSA provisions.
Yesterday came the announcement of the Draft Clark Ray for DC Council-at-Large Committee. Outlets like the Examiner highlight committee supporters such as Cora Masters Barry (no more details needed!) and Laurie Collins (resident advocate in Mount Pleasant and campaigner in the Fenty mayoral campaign). But note that those long involved in community work, much in the nonprofit sector, including Kim L.E. Bell and Pat Fisher, as well as society page residents like Simone Green, are also members of the committee boosting Clark. Media reports -- from the Washington Blade to the WCP City Desk blog to the aforementioned Washington Examiner have more on the whys and wherefores of the campaign, whether Clark will be taking on fellow Dem Phil Mendelson or Independent David Catania. Details about the candidate, campaign, etc. are on the draft Ray site.
Also out yesterday was the Brookland Heartbeat, an all-volunteer community newspaper that began in June 2005 to provide local news of interest to residents and businesses in greater Brookland, which included a piece on CM Michael Brown. Councilmember Michael Brown Eyes 2010 Mayoral Race is all about how the CM believes that "Mayor Adrian Fenty for leading the District in the wrong direction." (If you have not already signed up to receive notices of the latest edition of the BH, do so today -- details are on the Web site.)
Susie's commentary on the democratic practice of fair and open elections and not the candidates themselves: During my 11 years at DC Action for Children and since that time, I have encouraged nonprofits to pay close attention to local political campaigns and to use them as an advocacy tool. In my view, "paying attention" is more than voter guides and candidate fora. To me, "paying attention" means reading the paper (and now blogs, etc.) everyday for quotes and position statements from candidates. It means collecting this information (quotes, position papers from campaign Web sites) in a methodical way and then using the information when necessary. What does "using" mean? Things like:
If your staff is too busy to do this collection work -- which I have to say I don't accept if the work is important enough to you -- it is a terrific gig for volunteers.
Have you used campaign literature, candidate quotes in other ways? Please share with me and I will post here.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
- First, juvenile crime is a favorite topic of conversation especially in warming and warm weather. This is particularly the case on the many community electronic discussion lists.
- Second, the Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary is considering the omnibus crime bill. While the legislation does not specifically contemplate recidivism, the challenges of recidivism and the adoption of a common definition of it should be part of the dialogue.
The report analyzes re-conviction rates and other data for juveniles committed to DYRS as a way to assess the public safety impact of the many DYRS reform efforts.
Susie's commentary: This is a useful tool, one that I wish I had known about when I was working on another project. It contains information that is often absent from the public discourse on youth involvement in crime and delinquency, one that in fact refutes much of the current thinking about the revolving door of youth detention and re-involvement in crime.
DYRS director Vincent Schiraldi provided details about New Beginnings in his testimony on the mayor’s proposed FY 2010 budget. Highlights are:
- The new facility has a 60 bed capacity
- locked treatment program for the city’s deepest end youth
- Move DYRS toward compliance with Jerry M. class action lawsuit
The construction, costing $44,460,340, was on time, and on budget, according to the Committee on Human Services. The committee also expressed some skepticism about DYRS’s plans in their draft FY 2010 mark-up report:
There is some concern that 60 beds may not be enough, given the increase in the number of new commitments in recent years. Of 740 committed youth during FY 2010, there will only be room for 60 at the new Oak Hill facility. The remaining 680 youth will be placed in Residential Treatment Centers, Group Homes, with relatives (including back in their own homes) and in Independent Living settings. The majority of the youth committed to DYRS for committing crimes in the District will be placed by the Agency in community–based settings, where the community itself will bear much of the responsibility for keeping these youth out of trouble, and getting them back on the right track.
Saturday, May 23, 2009
- Commercial Corridor/Small Business Development ($400,000 in CDBG-R)
- Storefront Façade Improvement ($700,000 in CDBG-R)
- Barbara Chambers Children’s Center ($0)
- Capital Area Food Bank (CAFB) (just under $3 million in CDBG-R)
The public is encouraged to comment on the proposal; the deadline is COB May 29. The actual proposal and details about commenting are on page 10.
Also remember that the issue and child fatality recommendations also involve health (under the purview of the Committee on Health, Catania, chair), education (under the purview of the Committee of the Whole, Gray, chair), and juvenile justice (under the purview of the Committee on Human Services, Wells, chair). All in all, then, all members of the City Council have some responsibility for oversight of this issue and implementation of the recommendations.
My point? That residents of Wards 2, 3, 4, and 7 should urge their representatives to attend and actively participate in the hearing. As we would expect, Ward 8 had the highest number of youth deaths investigated by the committee. Of the 160 deaths analyzed in the report, 36 were from Ward 8. But other wards felt the pain as is illustrated in the report (page 5, page 11 of 54). Those analysts, advocates and providers working with the health and human services committee as well as the Committee of the Whole should also encourage committee staff and chairs to pay close attention to this issue.
There is no single fix to this problem. Many things have to change to keep kids alive and safe.
Friday, May 22, 2009
- The Director of the Department of Health Care Finance (DHCF) has issued final rules entitled "Medicaid Reimbursement For Mental Health Rehabilitative Services (MHRS)." The purpose of these final rules is to (1) set forth the appropriate billing code for the MHRS services and increases in reimbursement rates for certain MHRS services: medication/somatic treatment, counseling, community-based intervention (CBI) and assertive community treatment (ACT); (2) establish a new billing code for assessing eligibility of consumers for behavioral health services; and (3) establish a rate differential and new billing code for CBI Level I (multi-systemic) services. (See page 4098)
- The Board of Commissioners of the District of Columbia Housing Authority (DCHA) has issued final amendments to selected provisions of Title 14 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations. The final rule changes relate to Chapter 95, Rent Subsidy Programs, specifically the Local Rent Supplement Program. The commissioners’ May 13 vote approving the amendments are effective upon publication in the Register. (See page 4101)
- The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) issued final rules entitled "State-wide Academic Assessments." OSSE requires District-wide testing annually for the assessment and evaluation of student achievement in public and public charter schools, including students receiving educational services funded by the District of Columbia in other states. In this regard the final regulation clarifies that Section A2301.4 does not apply to children who are wards of the District of Columbia living outside the District, and participate in a statewide assessment administered by schools they attend in another jurisdiction. The District of Columbia’s annual academic assessment is currently administered through the District of Columbia Comprehensive Assessment System (DC-CAS). (See page 4105)
- OSSE has issued final rules, adopting a new Chapter A54 to subchapter A of Title 5 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations (DCMR). The rules establish procedures for an eligible applicant to appeal to OSSE a decision by a District of Columbia Eligible Chartering Authority denying a petition to establish a public charter school in the District of Columbia. Proposed rules were published for comment on March 20, 2009 (56 DC Register 2276) and are being adopted in final as proposed. (See page 4108)
- District of Columbia Child Fatality Review Committee 2007 Annual Report, presented to Mayor Fenty in December 2008. What is particularly interesting about this report is that it is not on the DC government Web site but rather on that of the National Center for Child Death Review Policy and Practice/National MCH Center for Child Death Review.
In fact, the following appears on the Web site of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner: "CFRC Annual Reports: CFRC annual reports are available in hard copies." (Contact information is provided so the public may request a copy.) Yet you can only get to this page by conducting an Internet search; I tried many ways to find this page from the main OCME site but no luck. Why is this important? Well, one of the criticisms of the government is their failure to use the recommendations to improve practice. It’s really hard to make improvements if you don’t know what the recommendations are. . . .
- District of Columbia Child Fatality Review Committee 2006 Annual Report and the District of Columbia Child Fatality Review Committee 2006 Recommendations and Agency Responses. These documents are important because they were part of 2007 and 2008 efforts by the city’s leadership (the mayor, senior aide and now AG Peter Nickles, and CM Tommy Wells) to ensure that the recommendations made were implemented. The July 1, 2009 hearing will hopefully bring to light the government’s current commitment to adopting the recommended changes.
- Fenty freezes hiring, cuts budget of committee to prevent child deaths by the Examiner’s Bill Myers in August 2008. I hope that CM Mendelson makes a point to determine how the mayor planned to implement the 2006 recommendations in this context:
Mayor Adrian Fenty has instituted a hiring freeze and is slashing the budget of the city agency charged with making recommendations to prevent children’s deaths in D.C., The Examiner has learned.
The Child Fatality Review Committee looks over every child’s death in D.C. and compiles an annual report designed to help city leaders shape policies to protect kids. In February. Fenty froze its staff, leaving the committee with several unfilled positions, including a key coordinator.
- In 2001, three Washington Post reporters published a series of investigative pieces shining light on cases of a "pattern of official neglect". Sari Horwitz, Scott Higham and Sarah Cohen won a 2002 Pulitzer for their investigative reporting. About the committee’s recommendations, the journalists wrote this:
In eight years of confidential reports, fatality committee members issued more than 300 warnings about these and other problems in reviews of the 180 deaths, the analysis showed. They proposed specific solutions to the mayor, the D.C. Council, the police chief, the director of the Child and Family Services Agency and the chief judge of D.C. Superior Court. But over the years, even as some officials left and new ones took over, the great majority of the proposed solutions went unheeded.
"No one paid any attention to us," said Elizabeth Siegel, a lawyer and fatality committee member.
Mayor Anthony A. Williams (D), who was elected in 1998, is working to revamp the entire system.
- On B18-75, “Mandatory HIV Testing and Educational Services for Inmates and Committed Youth Amendment Act of 2009”, July 1 at 10:00 am in the JAWB Room 412. The purpose of the bill is to require HIV testing of all inmates and committed youth offenders.
- On the Child Fatality Review Committee Annual Report, July 1 at 11:00 am in the JAWB Room 412. The purposes of the hearing are to 1) comply with the legal requirement that a hearing be held and 2) review the findings of the report.
- On B18-65, “Attorney General of the District of Columbia Clarification Act of 2009”, July 10 at Noon in the JAWB Council Chamber. The purpose of the hearing is to hear testimony about the proposed provisions that would change the position of Attorney General from an appointed position to an elected one.
Susie's commentary: Having been a reviewer for the Trust on a few occasions, I think this is a terrific opportunity to learn about some truly wonderful, successful, high quality programs working with young people in the District. It is well worth the time. And for you bosses out there, this is a terrific professional development opportunity for your staff. So if you are interested, be sure to get your resume in by COB May 29.
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Highlights from the report are:
- DC is better than nationwide when it comes to kids having health insurance (96.5% in DC to 90.9% nationwide)
- In the area of risk of developmental or behavior problems, 30.1% of parents in DC have concerns compared to 26.4% nationwide
- Only 67.6% of children in DC live in supportive neighborhoods versus 83.2% nationwide
Susie's commentary: Now, how are providers and advocates going to use this information? For example, if there are agency vacancies, what are they? Are they essential to programs, services or populations you care about? Are you going to look into this issue? Or this example: We are in August and there is a bunch of money left in the budget, are you going to check into why this is the case? Because remember, what is left in the budget at the end of the fiscal year falls to the bottom line (with some exceptions).
Again the point: We have information previously unavailable to the general public -- what are we going to do with it?
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
The Collective is holding a Volunteer Orientation on Sunday, June 7 from 1:00 - 5:00 pm. Volunteers are asked to make a commitment to provide childcare at least six times over the course of 6 months and attend additional trainings that we provide. The volunteer application and more information is on their site. The application deadline is June 1.
State of the Ward 2009 Address on May 27. This event, which will feature a comprehensive look at the current state of Ward 7, is being held at 6:30 pm.
The Black College Review covered one presentation of the Foster Care Campaign at the City Council's March youth-only hearing. The FCC youth were back in front of Council Chair Vincent C. Gray earlier this month to reiterate the need for the center. You can watch both hearings by going to the Office of Cable Television Web site and watching them on demand.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
increased need for legal counsel to assist with the consequences of a loss in income, including unemployment benefits, potential loss of housing, other government benefits, and child support.
Other legal issues arising directly out of the economic slowdown are also on the rise. Tenants are fighting evictions because of foreclosures against landlords; landlords are delaying repairs due to reduced access to credit; and, creditors are increasing collection efforts on consumer debt. Furthermore, as economic stress increases, domestic violence also increases.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
You may recall that the emergency version of this bill was introduced by Ward 6 CM Tommy Wells and At-large CM David Catania. It was passed unanimously in April 7, 2009.
If you are testifying, I would be happy to share your testimony here.
As many of you know, the District has a curfew law. As I pointed out in my response to the 3D Substation posting, details about the DC juvenile curfew are on the MPD Web site. September to June, young people, with exceptions, have to be home by 11:00; the time changes to midnight during the summer months. The more important part of my response on the 3D Substation list is this:
The curfew hours were changed (restricted) in the summer of 2006 by Mayor Williams when Chief Ramsey declared a crime emergency. Both sides of the debate came out fighting at that time. MPD reports that the number of curfew violators increased during the crime emergency; see Impact of the 2006 Crime Emergency in the District of Columbia. As a long-time observer of MPD, and as someone who has worked with MPD in various capacities in a collegial public-private way, my take on the data differs from that of MPD. I agree that the number of violators picked up increased during 2006. But I would argue that the numbers were higher precisely because MPD made curfew violations a priority for officers and not necessarily because there were more violators.
The curfew is only one tool that the community can use to “deal” with young people. I would argue now, as I did for years in my role as a child advocate at a citywide DC child advocacy organization, that it is not the most effective tool to guide people in the right direction. THAT happens when we (the city, families, nonprofits, etc.) put actions in place directed to changing the trajectory of youth behavior.Other pertinent information on the curfew is here:
- September 28, 2006 press release on continued restriction of curfew hours
- A Report on Juvenile and Adult Homicide in the District of Columbia 2001-2005
- WAMU piece, Teens Take on Curfew
- WAMU's DC Politics Hour with Kojo and Jonetta, "The new youth curfew sparks heated protest from some teens. Is the city taking a get-tough approach to crime -- or becoming a nanny state?"
Friday, May 15, 2009
DC Campaign has long advocated that recreation centers stay open longer hours and be open on the weekends.
Why? Because one of the protective factors that helps prevent teen pregnancy is providing safe places for teens to spend time with their friends with structured and engaging activities and adult supervision.
DC Campaign is delighted that recreation centers are now open on Sundays for teens and the community and look forward to working with the Department of Parks and Recreation to make teen pregnancy a thing of the past!
The public "thank you" is appropriate and strategic. Rather than always asking for something, the Campaign acknowledges DPR has done something good for young people.
Susie's commentary: When was the last time you thanked an elected or appointed official for something?
Learn more about how to vote in this flier. And then VOTE!! And encourage your colleagues to vote! VOTE NOW -- the deadline is at the end of May.
As pointed out in the recent oversight and budget hearings, and in advocacy materials by DC Action for Children, for example, CFSA faces a number of challenges today and into the future. Read Dr. Gerald's testimony and other docs available on this blog to learn more about both what Roque plans to do and what improvements need to be made.
- Final rules about implementing the city's inclusionary zoning law.
- Medicaid-related proposed rules. The proposal would establish criteria for determining whether a service is medically necessary, a prerequisite for reimbursement by Medicaid. Public comments must be submitted to the Department of Health Care Finance within 30 days of the publication in the DCR, May 15, 2009.
From the 5/15/09 DCR.
Thursday, May 14, 2009
The Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary, chaired by At-large CM Phil Mendelson, held a public hearing on the bill on March 18; watch the hearing here on the OCT Web site (the hearing actually starts at minute 6:20). There were more than 45 witnesses who registered to testify. CMs Mendelson, Evans and Graham delivered opening remarks (minutes 6:20, 10:30 and 15:10, respectively).
According to CMs Evans and Mendelson, Council Chair Vincent Gray and CMs Mary Cheh, Jack Evans, and Phil Mendelson agreed that the committee would mark-up the bill in June so that there could be two votes by the time the council went out for summer recess in mid-July. The legislation would become effective some time in the fall, depending on the Congressional calendar.
The committee will hold another hearing on the bill on May 18 at 10:30 in the Council Chamber (Room 500). This hearing is by invitation only and is designed to delve more deeply into a limited number of issues raised in previous hearings and constituent communications.
Susie's commentary: Mayor Fenty apparently wants this legislation implemented immediately, presumably in time for summer.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Saturday, May 9, 2009
- Public hearing on B18-0076, "Public Land Surplus Standards Amendment Act of 2009", May 29, 11:00 am in the JAWB Council Chamber. The hearing is convened by Committee on Government Operations and the Environment (Ward 3 CM Mary Cheh).
- Public hearing on B18-69, "Anti-Graffiti Act of 2009", May 29, Noon, JAWB Room 412. The Committee on Public Safety & the Judiciary (At-large CM Phil Mendelson, chair) seeks testimony on the bill reported out of the Committee on Public Works and Transportation (Ward 1 CM Jim Graham, chair).
- Public oversight roundtable on the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington and the Omnibus Childcare Background Regulations, May 27, 10:00 am in the JAWB Council Chamber. The roundtable is sponsored by Ward 5 CM Harry Thomas, chair of the Committee on Libraries, Parks and Recreation.
Young people ages 14-20 are invited to show off their audio/video skills to encourage other teens to have a safe, non-violent summer, using the “No Time for Crime” theme. Verse must include at least one of the following messages: anti-violence; anti-auto theft; crime prevention; teen safety; and/or anti-gang violence.The deadline is Sunday, May 17, 2009. Details are on the MPD Web site.
Friday, May 8, 2009
Thursday, May 7, 2009
is intended to enhance the communities use of public spaces and buildings, including schools, parks, recreation centers, and libraries, while also standardizing the process for accessing these spaces for games, meetings, and events. This measure would establish a Board to carry out a best-practices study of surrounding jurisdictions and other municipalities and report to the Council of the District of Columbia its findings. This report would include recommendations on how the District can improve the use of public spaces for sporting activities by creating a more consistent and transparent system to utilize public space. The report must be provided to the Council within eighteen months of the creation of the Board. The Board will expire six months after the report has been submitted to the Council.
The bill was referred to the Committee on Government Operations and the Environment (Ward 3 CM Mary Cheh, chair). CM Harry Thomas Jr. (Ward 5) co-introduced this measure; co-sponsors are CMs Mary Cheh, Kwame Brown, Michael Brown, and Jim Graham.
Susie's commentary: As many folks know, there is a wide range of fees, applications and application processes being used for public use of, um, public space. I'm not sure the solution is an 18-month effort, but I am glad someone is paying attention to challenges District residents, providers, businesses, and nonprofits face every day.
DC Campaign held a Teen Town Hall meeting for a group of girls who’d gotten in trouble with the law. DC Campaign believes that teens are the experts on their own lives, so during every teen town hall meeting, we asked the girls to make a list of their major concerns. The girls were 13, 14, years old, and do you know what they told us were the biggest problems they had? Shooting and killing, HIV, teen pregnancy, perverts, abuse and getting health care.
Can you imagine? All the money we spend in this city and little girls are worried about problems most of us never even heard about until we were fully grown. There’s something wrong with that picture…..and we need to change it.
This is from the DC Campaign's testimony on the FY 2010 budget support act before the Committee of the Whole on April 23, 2009. Brenda Rhodes Miller, ED of this local nonprofit, implored the Council to fund best practices and evidence-based practices and to ask hard questions of those at the Council looking for money for their program. She also said this:
If we really care about the young people in this town, we have to hold programs to the highest possible standard. Ask yourselves: Is it is good enough for your children or grandchildren? If it isn’t good enough for your children and it isn’t good enough for my children, then it isn’t good enough for any of the District’s children.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Monday, May 4, 2009
"Why is this important?" you might ask. Well for one, the human services committee's decision to unfund the build-out of the Youth Transition Center for CFSA will negatively affect the whole project. Certain component costs of the Center were to be shared by the initial three government agencies in the Center, DOES, DYRS and CFSA. We can expect some changes in the project's plans as a result.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Saturday, May 2, 2009
The Committee on Libraries, Parks and Recreation (Harry Thomas, chair) is holding a public oversight roundtable on “2009 Summer Readiness for the Department of Parks and Recreation.” The roundtable is being held on May 11 at 10:00 am the Council Chamber in the JAWB. The public is encouraged to testify; those not able to comment publicly may submit a written statement. Details here.
The City Council is considering a reprogramming request (Reprogramming 18-15) of the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) of $6.5 million. The reprogramming will align PS budget authority and fully fund contracts associated with special education. Unless a CM files a notice of disapproval, the reprogramming will become effective on the 15th day after the receipt by the council. The 14 day review began April 23.
The Office of Contracting and Procurement (OCP) has issued final rules in the May 1, 2009 edition of the DC Register about the requirement for local and federal criminal background checks and local a traffic check for private agencies contracting with the DC government which work with children and youth. The rules are now in effect. The rules are required by DC Law 15-353, “Child and Youth Safety and Health Omnibus Amendment Act of 2004.”