Our Pillars 2017-06-01T07:43:27+00:00

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Stabilization Of At Risk Families

19% of Texas children live in high poverty neighborhoods and that number is growing.

Child abuse is a massive public health problem that permeates every level of our community.

“Child abuse and neglect are complex problems rooted in unhealthy relationships and environments.  Preventing child abuse and neglect requires a comprehensive approach that influences all levels of the social ecology (including the societal culture).”

“Effective prevention strategies focus on modifying policies, practices, and societal norms to create safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments.”

– Center for Disease Control

Needed Action:

  • Support for policies, programs and laws that ensure a financial safety net for families.
  • Support for policies, programs and laws that help ensure affordable daycare.
  • Development and support for family friendly work policies and practices that support families while balancing good business models.

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Protection Of Vulnerable Children

Texas ranks 41st in child well-being.

All families live out their daily lives and interaction in a setting that is largely invisible to those outside the family unless something goes wrong.

Because of the intimate and private nature of family life, children and their families are often at risk or have experienced harm well before they receive needed support.

The Center for Disease Control cites the number one goal to ensure the essentials of childhood requires raising the awareness of and commitment to the promotion of safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments.

NEEDED ACTION

  • Development, implementation and support of early childhood in home services for at risk and vulnerable children and their families and caregivers.
  • Develop and deliver evidence based parenting education.
  • Provide access to affordable primary medical care.
  • Require outreach models that train all professionals who have frontline contact with both new and young parents and families.

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Comprehensive Education Of Workers On The Front Line

2,495 Confirmed child abuse victims in Travis County in 2015.

The basic qualification for becoming a child protective services specialist is a degree from an accredited college.  Until 2016, Texas required a four-year degree from an accredited university. This requirement has been eliminated.

Public agencies traditionally have little or no funding for training. Training is essential for front line workers forced to make life and death decisions for children.

Whether the frontline worker is the prosecutor, daycare worker, physician or law enforcement officer, their need for training is a prerequisite for the protection of the most vulnerable.

NEEDED ACTION

  • Political action to require increased educational requirements for child protective professionals and increased pay scales.
  • Strengthen mandated reporting education for those from top to bottom within the educational systems – daycare to higher education leadership and management.
  • Requirement of mandated reporting and training in how to access the CPS system for every professional who interfaces and interacts with parents and children.

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Early Education For Children And Their Families

2,495 Confirmed child abuse victims in Travis County in 2015.

Early childhood is seen as the window of opportunity for prevention.

The Center for Disease Control cites “enhancing parenting skills to promote healthy child development” as one of five strategies for the prevention of child abuse.

Education is the single most important force for good in the lives of both parent and child. It has a transformative power.

Most of the families who come to the attention of social services want to do better but most are unprepared or unable to give what their children need and they are drowning in seas of poverty, educational deficits, and awash in huge systems that are difficult for even the most capable.

NEEDED ACTION

  • Public involvement in changing cultural and social mores that appear to base availability of such services on affordability and access. This locks too many out.
  • Provide early childhood and preschool education for every child.
  • Develop and support early education and parenting programs that incentivize at risk families for participating.

19% of Texas children live in high poverty neighborhoods and that number is growing.

Nearly70% of all reported sexual assaults occur to children ages 17 and under.

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