Friday, June 26, 2009

Prevent Child Abuse America sends a letter to the members of Michigan's Legislature because of threats to funding for early childhood programming.

Earlier this week, the staff at Prevent Child Abuse Michigan asked us to bolster their efforts to fight budget cuts to early childhood programming in the state by sending a letter to the Legislature there arguing for the importance of protecting programs like these. We have posted that letter below.

Dear Members of Michigan’s Legislature,

The economic viability of Michigan is in part dependent upon the availability of a skilled workforce which is productive and contributes to Michigan’s competitiveness in a global economy. Supporting services that assist the workforce to perform productively is good for business, good for our economy and simply good public policy. Continued funding for early childhood programming helps accomplish this goal.

Citizens across Michigan and across the country overwhelmingly oppose cuts in funding to early childhood programs. And with good reason, because when we invest in child development, we are investing in community and economic development, as flourishing children become the foundation of a thriving society.

Unfortunately, children are sometimes exposed to extreme and sustained stress like child abuse and neglect, which can be devastating to a child's development. This toxic stress damages the developing brain and adversely affects an individual’s learning and behavior, as well as increases susceptibility to physical and mental illness. As a nation, we spend an estimated $104 billion a year on services that are required as a result of child maltreatment, such as foster care, criminal justice and special education.

We can invest in children now, however, so we don’t have pay later, and we can be the stewards of a stronger Michigan today and on into the future. We implore you to continue Michigan’s investment in early childhood programming.


James M. Hmurovich, President & CEO
Prevent Child Abuse America

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