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PathWays PA Special E-Alert - June 24, 2009

Help Reform Child Welfare Financing
The Department of Public Welfare has recently delivered amendments to the Public Welfare Code to the Pennsylvania General Assembly in support of their goal to safely reduce the number of children in foster care placement by 20% by 2010.
According to the Pennsylvania Partnership for Children's Porch Light Project, at any given moment, 20,000 children find themselves living in the foster care system rather then with their birth families because they have been abused or neglected. Research demonstrates that children in home settings generally achieve better outcomes than those in institutional setting, including, higher levels of education, less alcohol or other drug abuse problems, more positive relationships with biological siblings, better housing stability, more close relationships and social support, less dependency on public assistance, and less risk of delinquency.
Please contact your local representatives and let them know how important this initiative is to you and to Pennsylvania.

As the Budget Turns...Help Save Industry Partnerships and Child Care Work Subsidies!
Currently in Harrisburg, legislators are grappling with the state budget. In order for important programs, like the Industry Partnerships and Child Care Works Subsidies, to continue to receive funding, legislators need to hear from you.
Please contact your representatives and let them know how important these programs are.
If you would like to sign onto a letter supporting the Industry Partnerships you can click here.
If you would like to send your own letter to your legislators we have prepared a letters that discuss the importance of the Industry Partnership Programs and the Child Care Work Subsidies. Please feel free to include your own personal stories.
Here is some information about the programs that you can share with your representatives:
The Industry Partnerships are consortiums that allow employers to improve and expand their workforce by bringing together companies committed to the development of their workforce. This program provides workers with access to training that gives them the skills necessary to maintain jobs and obtain employment with sufficient wages so workers can adequately support their families. In Pennsylvania more than 6,300 businesses are involved with more than 70 Industry Partnerships across the state and more than 70,000 workers have been trained since 2005. On average, those workers have seen their wages rise by 6.62 percent within the first year after receiving the training.
The Child Care Works Subsidies allow parents to afford to work by assisting them with the expense of child care. For many parents the cost of child care may be more than they bring home in a paycheck. Currently in Pennsylvania, over 15,000 people are eligible for the child care subsidies but are currently on the waitlist, where some families remain for months. In the meantime, they must pay more than they can afford for child care, provide childcare through an unreliable patchwork of friends, family, or substandard facilities, or risk losing their jobs at a time when employment is hard to find.
Particularly in these tough economic times when employment is of significant importance, Pennsylvania cannot afford to cut programs that provide training and make work possible for so many.


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