March 2012 RESULTS National Conference Call: Bipartisan "Dear Colleague" Early Childhood Letter

March 12, 2012
by Meredith Dodson, Director of U.S. Poverty Campaigns

Our Head Start, Early Head Start, and the Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) by building support for a bipartisan “Dear Colleague” letter circulating in the House. Guest speaker Helen Blank, Director of Leadership and Public Policy at the National Women’s Law Center, offered her insights on the early childhood field and how we can make the most effective case for protecting these vital services. Congress is now beginning work on the FY 2013 budget and we need to once again remind lawmakers that investing in early learning services in an investment in our future. Rep. Dale Kildee (D-MI-5) and Rep. Todd Platts (R-PA-19) are circulating a bipartisan “Dear Colleague” letter to House members urging support for funding Head Start and child care at the levels needed to protect existing services (see below). The letter will then be sent to House Labor-HHS Subcommittee Chair Denny Rehberg (R-MT-AL) and Ranking Member Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-3), who set funding levels for Head Start and CCDBG. The more signatures on the letter, the stronger the message to appropriators. Being a bipartisan letter increases the chances of getting both Republicans and Democrats to sign on. But we have to act now! The letter closes on Wednesday, March 14. Please call House aides in Washington, DC TODAY urging them to sign on the Kildee-Platts “Dear Colleague” letter. Use the talking points in our March Action Sheet for your calls and see the sample conversation with an aide about the letter on our website, which we reviewed on Saturday’s conference call.

RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Ginnie Vogts hosted a “Shares” section, which included highlights of recent activities in Columbus OH, Santa Fe NM and South Central PA. Grassroots Fundraising Manager Cindy Changyit Levin gave an update about the Friends and Family fundraising campaign, and RESULTS Gig Harbor WA volunteer Betsy Gast highlighted her own experiences participating in the campaign. Finally, we welcomed our newest Congressional Hunger Fellows Tavia Benjamin and Allison Burket, placed at RESULTS through the Congressional Hunger Center. Tavia will focus her efforts on our Early Childhood Development campaign while Allison works on our Economic Opportunity for All campaign. We are thrilled to have them on the RESULTS team for the next few months and are grateful to have their skills and talents on staff.

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