As San Antonio debates a ballot initiative to extend pre-K education to more of its children, the San Antonio Express-News
discusses the value of early learning for children with our in-house pre-K expert Kara Johnson. She emphasizes the bipartisan consensus Texas has arrived at that early education matters.
9.7.12 State Leaders Told to Stop Pitting Education, Health-Care Needs Against Each Other
Texans Care for Children
CEO Eileen Garcia, as chair of the Texas Forward coalition, is quoted in the Burnt Orange Report's blog post about a growing petition calling on state leaders to meet children's health care and education needs.9.7.12 Hope Rises from the Ashes
An Austin American-Statesman
editorial quotes our juvenile justice policy expert Lauren Rose on advances in a program for some of the most troubled youth in the juvenile justice system. As a letter to the editor
from Lauren later notes, however, Texas cannot yet say it is ensuring the safety of all children within its care.
9.7.12 Teacher and Healthcare Groups Agree: Let's Get Together and Raise a Little Revenue
The Texas Observer
reports on our work with "a coalition of healthcare and education groups gathered at the Capitol to try and beat back the idea that Texans have to choose between paying for schools or our growing demand for Medicaid. Texas Forward, a kind of public interest supergroup with dozens of members, organized the policy party, featuring bona fide lab-coated doctors side by side with teachers and union reps."
9.6.12 Texas Bets on Small Fixes to Reduce Violence in Youth LockUps
The Texas Observer
spoke to Texans Care for Children's CEO Eileen Garcia and juvenile justice expert Lauren Rose about how the Texas Juvenile Justice Department is coping with its latest crisis: a new series of violent incidents in lockups.
9.5.12 Coalition Unites Behind Balanced Approach for State Budget
The Houston Chronicle
was one of several news organizations to cover a Texas Forward press conference where Texans Care for Children and other groups suggested Texas must meet the needs of its children and all people, because cuts to vital services would only drag our state backwards.9.2.12 New Juvenile Justice Program Shows Early Promise
In reporting on the Phoenix Program, a small facility for violent young offenders in the Texas juvenile justice system, the Austin American-Statesman
spoke with our juvenile justice policy expert Lauren Rose, who notes the importance of small staff-to-youth ratios in creating a supportive environment.8.28.12 Sugary Drinks and Obesity
The Houston Chronicle
published a letter to the editor from our health policy associate Lauren Dimitry about the public should take an interest in preventing children from consuming too many sugary drinks. Lauren also offers a strategy for Texas to consider.8.12.12 How Will the Recession Affect Today's Youth?
Kids today are growing up in one of the most difficult times in recent U.S. history. The Dallas Morning News
spoke with Texans Care CEO Eileen Garcia about the lasting impact on children of growing up in a time of economic deprivation and growing austerity.
8.5.12 Giving Texas the Care It Needs: If anything, Medicaid needs more support, not more state control
Texas has a chance to save lives, improve health, and bring more peace of mind to millions of Texans, all while improving the state health system and ensuring more money in taxpayer pockets. In a Sunday Insight spotlight in the Austin American-Statesman
, Texans Care for Children chief executive officer Eileen Garcia joined other members of the Texas Well and Healthy Campaign in making the case that growth in the state's Medicaid program is an important opportunity the state can't miss.7.27.12 Dr. Perry vs. Obamacare: Whatever Gov. Tough Guy says, Texas health care is about to get a federal update
Benefits of the Affordable Care Act already are kicking in for countless Texans, and more will be coming down the pike as we explained to the Austin Chronicle
. The article also highlights the work of the Texas Well and Healthy campaign that we help lead, which is educating and organizing folks across the state around the cause of better health care for Texas kids and families.
7.26.12 Texas #44 in Child Wellbeing
The Amarillo Globe-News
reports on a new national ranking report that finds Texas falls behind 43 other states in overall wellbeing for children and speaks to Texans Care for Children CEO Eileen Garcia.
7.11.12 Efforts to Repeal, Limit Health Care Law Intensify in Congress and States
Nationally syndicated Free Speech Radio News spoke to Eileen Garcia, our CEO, about the governor's efforts to prevent Texas from expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. The wellbeing of Texas families and their financial security is what defines success for Texas, she notes, and measures that would leave more families out of the health care system and holding the bill for medical care are no way to plan for future success.7.10.12 4 Reasons Rick Perry May Regret Battling ObamacareThe Week
, the international weekly news magazine, offers "the list" in each edition, with a focus this time on why Texas stands to benefit so much from the Affordable Care Act. CEO Eileen Garcia explains that the dollars Texas has to gain in its health system and local economies make the nation's health reform law a winning issue for Texas.
7.9.12 Perry Declares Texas' Rejection of Health Care Law 'Intrusions'
The New York Times'
coverage of Governor Rick Perry's attempt to single-handedly opt Texas out of many of the benefits of the nation's health reform law included comments from our CEO Eileen Garcia in conjunction with our organization's role in Texas Well and Healthy, a campaign of grassroots supporters of improving health care for Texans.7.6.12 Care Act Will Benefit Children
In a Houston Chronicle
op-ed coauthored with our partners at the Center for Public Policy Priorities and Children's Defense Fund-Texas, CEO Eileen Garcia points out that the Supreme Court's ruling on the nation's health care law is good for Texas children, who are currently the nation's kids most likely to go without insurance or have parents with no insurance. 7.2.12 Health Care Ruling is Good for Texas
In the Fort Worth Star-Telegram,
advocates including Texans Care's Eileen Garcia explain what comes next after a Supreme Court ruling in favor of the nation's health reform law: "We look to build upon the enormous progress for children's healthcare under the law and will work until every Texan is guaranteed access to comprehensive, affordable healthcare."6.28.12 Texans React to Health RulingThe Texas Tribune
included the reaction from both our organization, Texans Care for Children, and the campaign whose communications we coordinate, Texas Well and Healthy, in a round-up of important perspectives on the historic Supreme Court ruling upholding the Affordable Care Act.6.25.12 Organizations Join CLC in Fight to Regulate Payday Lenders
Texans Care for Children has joined with other advocates of fair lending to form a coalition to improve the state's regulation of predatory lending, such as payday and auto-title loans. This report in the Baptist Standard
offers more details.6.21.12 Plan to Open High-Security Lockdown for Violent Youths Being Protested
The Austin American-Statesman
reports that Texans Care for Children and other juvenile justice advocates called on the Texas Juvenile Justice Department to take care in creating a new "Phoenix Program" for offenders deemed too dangerous for existing juvenile justice facilities. Our organization and others called for a public hearing on the matter to ensure transparency and accountability for the safety of every youth.
6.21.12 Advocates Ask Juvenile Justice Agency to Delay Decision
The Texas Tribune
spoke to Eileen Garcia, our CEO, about our organization's recommendation that the board of the Texas Juvenile Justice Department hold off on making hasty plans for a new program for some offenders. "Garcia said advocates want to make sure the reforms don't take a 'Band-aid' or 'reactive' approach, but truly create meaningful change."
6.12.12 Hogg Foundation Awards $326,436 in Grants to Train Mental Health Policy Fellows in Texas
Texans Care for Children will continue to offer a policy academy for mental health fellows and their mentors and will bring on board a new mental health policy fellow of its own, with support from the Hogg Foundation, The University of Texas at Austin News
notes.6.4.12 Officials Look to Adult Prison to Help Solve Juvenile Security Problems
In a disturbing Austin American-Statesman
report, Texas officials float an idea about locking up more children in the most dangerous and least humane environment: adult prisons. The voice of protest in this article is our own Eileen Garcia, who believes child offenders belong in the system that was created to rehabilitate them, which is the juvenile justice one.
5.10.12 Report: Lubbock a Shining Example of What to Do When Working with Children's Mental Health Issues
The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal
wrote about our report on the state of children's mental health in Texas, including the finding that one of the things working best on the mental health landscape is that local communities are creating solutions that work. Mental health policy associate Josette Saxton notes, "Texas is last among states in mental health spending and last also in mental health treatment for children who need it," and offers several recommendations of how Texas can improve.
5.3.12 Keep Youth Out of Adult Prisons
Jefferson County is failing to take advantage of an option that keeps youth safer, reduces costs, and prevents crime, notes Texans Care CEO Eileen Garcia in a letter to the editor of the Beaumont Enterprise.
The option is keeping youth out of adult prisons and in the juvenile justice system where rehabilitation for young offenders is the focus.
4.13.12 Schools Prepare for Anti-Bullying Law
Under a law the Texas legislature passed in 2011, Texas schools have new responsibilities to ensure staff know how to address and prevent bullying. Texans Care for Children believes there is still more that could be done to ensure schools focus on prevention, versus pushing problem behaviors to other schools. Our juvenile justice and mental health policy fellow Lauren Rose spoke to KUT News about how schools can be intentional in addressing bullying in a more comprehensive way. (Learn more here.
1.14.12 Expect Best of Youth
When it comes to juvenile justice reform, Texas must prepare not only for kids to change, but for our systems to change, explains Texans Care CEO Eileen Garcia in a letter to the editor of the Austin American-Statesman. The letter also corrects an error made by the newspaper in its presentation of data on the number of youth committed to state facilities.
1.8.12 Salvaging Disposable Children
An Austin American-Statesman editorial describes why the reforms happening in the Texas juvenile justice system have big consequences, not only for children but for the state as a whole. The editorial referred to a press release from Texans Care for Children, noting the estimated cost to the state for each incarcerated child is $127,000.