Archives: Voices

CHN Member Groups and Allies React: A “Rogue” Court Denies the Reality of Racial Inequality – and Life – in America

CHN member groups and allies reacted with anger and angst over Thursday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning the use of affirmative action in college admissions – as well as with fear that the country’s institutions of higher learning will become re-segregated. But they also expressed a spirit of determination – a collective will that the six justices who struck down affirmative action will not have the final say when it comes to fighting racial discrimination in our country. 

CHN’s Human Needs Watch: Tracking Hardship, June 30, 2023

The we’re-failing-our-children edition. The latest National Assessment of Educational Progress test scores are out and the news is not good. The math and reading performance of 13-year-olds has hit the lowest level in decades. The last time the math performance was this low for 13-year-olds was 1990 – in reading, the last time it was this low was 2004. 

Child care cliff: 3.2 million kids could lose access beginning this fall 

As many as 3.2 million kids could lose access to child care beginning this fall and 70,000 child care centers across the U.S. could close, according to a disturbing new report released this week. The report, released by The Century Foundation, warns of the consequences of the loss of billions of dollars authorized by Congress as part of its pandemic-era aid. The report warns that these disastrous child care losses will have “ripple effects” that go far beyond the child care industry, which already was in dire straits even before the pandemic hit. 

Evictions are soaring. Affordable housing advocates warned this was coming. 

Eviction rates are soaring in some cities and states throughout the U.S., and in some cases are up 50 percent or more when compared to pre-pandemic levels. The higher rates appear to be linked to increased rents and a shortage of affordable housing stock as well as to the end of a federal moratorium on evictions and the expiration of rental assistance programs approved by Congress. 

How to address – and improve – Black maternal health 

Black women in the U.S. experience morbidity and mortality three to four times more often during childbirth than their white counterparts. While Hispanic mothers and Native American mothers also die at exceptionally high rates (2 times and 1.8 times, respectively), statistics show that maternal mortality in the Black community is a prominent and pressing issue. This issue is the cause of two main factors: implicit bias towards Black people in the medical field before and during pregnancy and a lack resources in Black communities.  

Summer’s here. It’s a great time to agitate! 

Next Monday marks Juneteenth, a holiday for many, including CHN.  And Wednesday is the first day of summer, also known as the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year for the Northern Hemisphere. It’s also traditionally a time when CHN member groups and allies pack the calendar with opportunities to make our voices heard.

CHN’s Human Needs Watch: Tracking Hardship, June 16, 2023

The no tax cuts for the rich edition. They’re at it again. Some House Republicans are pushing for giant tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and large corporations. In this newsletter you’ll read about how the top 20 percent would fare under the GOP proposals compared with the bottom 20 percent – and you’ll learn just how much the cuts will cost if House Republicans ultimately are successful in their quest to make them permanent. 

An Urgent Cry to Address Youth Mental Health. 

On February 11, 2022, Orli Sheffey died by suicide. Orli, a sophomore at Washington University in St. Louis, was an involved student on our campus: writing for the school newspaper Stud-Life, an aspiring Uncle Joe’s peer mental health counselor, and an advocate for Planned Parenthood and WashU votes. Her death shook our entire campus, as students were shocked that someone who was an advocate for mental health and a presence on this campus was suddenly gone.

Hundreds of thousands are losing Medicaid benefits – even though they still qualify 

A recent analysis has found that more than 600,000 Americans have lost Medicaid coverage since April 1 as states resume requiring proof of continued eligibility in order to  remain on the Medicaid rolls. This massive effort to determine the eligibility of millions of Medicaid beneficiaries has been triggered by the end of the pandemic public health emergency; it’s known as the “Medicaid unwinding.” 

American Family Act would bring back expanded Child Tax Credit, make other improvements 

More than 200 House members this week signed on to legislation that would once again expand the Child Tax Credit, a move that would comprehensively reduce child poverty in the U.S. The American Family Act (AFA) was introduced Wednesday by Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Suzan DelBene (D-WA), and Ritchie Torres (D-NY). The legislation comes as House Republicans are preparing to bring forth legislation to extend some Trump tax cuts passed in 2017, including cuts favored by large corporations.

CHN’s Human Needs Watch: Tracking Hardship, June 2, 2023

The We, the Hostages edition. Congress has passed the Fiscal Responsibility Act and it will soon be headed for President Biden’s signature. Passage will allow our nation to meet its obligations and avoid financial ruin. But the toll exacted by House Republicans during negotiations with the Biden Administration will be paid for years – and will harm the vulnerable and those with low incomes the most.