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Kevin Chavous' response to
DC ACTION FOR CHILDREN
1. Considering that health and human service budgets have been cut by 65% between FYs 1992 and 1997, and considering that the District had a $186 million surplus in FY 1997 and expects a surplus of $254 million in FY 1998, how much and to what programs would you restore funding regarding children and families?
As mayor, my budgets will emphasize the following:
2. What is the biggest problem facing youth today and how would you address it?
Its an appalling fact, but the majority of our youth face hunger and poverty. Poverty, families without financial security, homelessness, substandard housing among other negative factors all impact on our children ability to perform in school and to achieve and become successful adults. My administration will keep track of these children and ensure that they receive the services and support they need.
3. For some time, there has been talk about establishing a cabinet for children, youth and families. What are you views on such a concept? How would the cabinet be structured?
As mayor, I will implement a District wide initiative to provide early childhood programs, daycare (and night care), before and after school programs and creative recreational programs so that our children have a strong start, are supported through their instructional years and have a strong basis for employment and/or additional education. This initiative will be directed from a cabinet position, the name of which has yet to be decided However, my administration will ensure that the services of the Metropolitan Police Department, Department of Human Resources, Department of Recreation and Parks, Department of Health, and the Commission on Mental Health: Child and Youth Services Administration the District youth and family services are coordinated with those of the DC public schools. My administration will implement a coherent strategy to deal with student health and nutrition, family tensions, abuse and neglect, youth violence, truancy and student discipline. Our job will not be complete until we have functioning before and after school programs and alternative education programs and early childhood programs supporting strong beginnings for all children. from birth if not before.
This initiative will be coordinated with other existing task forces and advisory bodies on children, youth and families, particularly the Mayor's Advisory Committee on Early Childhood Development and with education advocacy groups.
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