The Connecticut Early Childhood Alliance is recognizing 29 state legislators as 2016 “Children’s Champions”. Every year, the Alliance recognizes legislators for their leadership on issues that impact the well-being of Connecticut’s young children in the areas of healthy development, early care and education, nutrition, and safety. “Although much of the focus during the session was on filling holes in the state budget, a number of early childhood issues received attention,” said Merrill Gay, Executive Director of the CT Early Childhood Alliance.
“Some very important early childhood issues were raised, and some good legislation did pass.” Among the items passed this year: Repeal of the sales tax on diapers, which was included in the budget implementer and is set to take effect July 1, 2018; and House Bill 5466, which requires background checks and notice of convictions for any household member in a family child care home or group child care home. Important issues raised included paid family and medical leave, childhood obesity prevention, increased access to early childhood programs for homeless children, and recruitment and retention of the early childhood workforce.
Founded in 2002, the Connecticut Early Childhood Alliance is a statewide organization committed to improving outcomes in the areas of learning, health, safety, and economic security for children ages birth to eight.