On Tuesday, December 10, the lead Congressional budget negotiators reached a deal on the federal budget for 2014 and 2015. They agreed to lift the automatic spending caps known in Washington as “the sequester.” These mindless automatic cuts have savaged important health, education, and child safety programs like Head Start and the Women and Children’s Nutritional Program (WIC), among numerous others. While the deal is a good start, Congress did not do what they should have: end these mindless cuts. Instead, they extended the “sequester” through 2023, so children years away from being born will continue to be harmed by these decisions. In addition, Congress did nothing to stop 1.3 million unemployed adults from losing their unemployment insurance on January 1.
While we don’t outright oppose this deal, we will spend the next year urging Congress to deal with the millions of children living in poverty, lacking access to nutrition programs and quality health care, and denied preschool education, child care, and after-school programs.
Regarding unemployment insurance, please call now, toll-free: 1-888-245-0215. You’ll be connected to the U.S. Capitol switchboard, and operators will connect you to your Representative’s* and Senators’* offices.
Please DO NOT leave for your holiday recess without renewing federal unemployment insurance—1.3 million long-term jobless workers will be affected immediately, and 4.9 million altogether through 2014. Congress has never turned its back on the jobless while there were so many long-term unemployed.
Every Child Matters Education Fund
For more information about Every Child Matters, please visit their website.