Friday, February 26, 2010

MomsRising: 15 million U.S. children are left alone after school.

Every afternoon 15 million U.S. children are left alone after school. And now there's even more proposed cuts to afterschool programs.
Tell Congress to stand up for Afterschool!

Every afternoon 15 million U.S. children, more than a ¼ of our kids, are left alone after school. [1]

This huge and heartbreaking number isn't because of parent neglect, it reflects a simple fact: Afterschool programs are unavailable or too expensive for millions of families across this country.

In fact, studies show that 18 million U.S. parents would enroll their kids in an afterschool program if one were simply available. [2]

Unfortunately, we're now in danger of losing the limited afterschool programs we currently have.

The President just released his proposed budget and it does a lot of things right, but it cuts more than 13,000 kids out of safe and educational afterschool programs. [3]

Congress is debating our national budget right now. So it's up to our Representatives to get America back to work and keep our children safe and learning by protecting afterschool programs.

Will you take a moment to tell your Representative that you are a part of the 83% of American parents who support public funding for afterschool programs?

The proposed budget cuts $13 million out of the 21st Century Community Learning Center (CCLC) before school, afterschool and summer programs. [4] CCLC programs focus on academic achievement, enrichment, and family literacy for thousands of elementary, middle and high school students in high poverty or low performing schools. [5]

These cuts couldn't come at a worse time. In today's economy more moms are returning to work and more parents are working two jobs to make ends meet. [6] So more kids need a safe and enriching place to spend the afterschool hours. Unfortunately, quality afterschool programs are hard to find. The hours between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. are the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex. [7] That's why afterschool programs are so important to American famlies.

Here's the link to tell your Representative to speak out for afterschool:

And please pass this link along.  Together we can be a voice for the 15 million children with no place to go after school.

Together, we are a powerful voice for women, children, and families!

--Sarah, Kristin, Donna, Joan and the whole team

P.S. Big thanks to the Afterschool Alliance for all the work they do on this issue:

P.P.S. Want to see how the proposed afterschool cuts impact your state?  Check out this state-by-state chart:

[1] "America After 3pm" Afterschool Alliance 2009:

[2] "America After 3pm" Afterschool Alliance 2009:

[3] Afterschool Alliance

[4] Afterschool Alliance

[5] Department of Education

[6]"In Downturn's Wake, Women Hold Half of U.S. Jobs" Wall Street Journal, Nov 12, 2009

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