Fear of COVID-19 has prompted parents to cancel well-child visits nationwide, putting millions of children at risk for whooping cough, measles and other life-threatening illnesses. But non-COVID-19 medical needs haven’t gone away, and it is just as essential to prevent other vaccine-preventable diseases like polio and meningitis as it is to develop a safe and effective coronavirus vaccine.
“There’s at least $55 million that our families and communities, and the New Mexico economy is missing out on because of that provision that everyone in the household has to have a Social Security number,” Wallin said.
By James Jimenez, Albuquerque Journal Mar. 27, 2020 As the world energy markets have shown in the past few weeks, New Mexico’s over-reliance on oil and gas revenue leaves our state vulnerable – not just [...]
For the most part, I found New Mexico’s social workers to be kind, strong individuals. It also seemed evident that they are being asked to do one of the most difficult jobs in state government. Helping to decide the fate of children is no small matter, and even the best-intentioned decisions can go terribly wrong.
According to New Mexico Voices for Children "there are major challenges when it comes to having enough food to eat, but there are common-sense policy solutions that we can take to end food insecurity and improve children’s health, well-being, and opportunities to reach their full potential."
New Mexico Voices for Children, the Southwest Organizing Project, state Sen. Mimi Stewart, state Sen. Antoinette Sedillo Lopez, state Rep. G. Andrés Romero, and three residents of the impacted area filed a Complaint for Injunctive Relief in federal court Monday against the Air Force and the Department of Defense.
The lawsuit is being brought by a coalition that includes the nonprofit groups Southwest Organizing Project and New Mexico Voices for Children; state Sen. Mimi Stewart, D-Albuquerque; state Sen. Antoinette Sedillo Lopez, D-Albuquerque; state Rep. Andrés Romero, D-Albuquerque; and Albuquerque residents Lucille Cordova, Reynaluz Juarez and Dante Smith.
“Ensuring an accurate census count is crucial for improving child well-being in our state because so much of the funding for health, education, and food security programs that New Mexico kids depend upon is determined by the census,” said Amber Wallin, deputy director of New Mexico Voices for Children.
Officials with Kids Count, nonprofit that advocates for children, said the governor’s $100,000 donation to the newly-created New Mexico Hunger Action Fund is a step in the right direction. “But we also know we need to think bigger,” said Amber Wallin, director of Kids Count. “In order to really address childhood hunger in New Mexico, we need to think about wages, we need to think about tax policy in New Mexico, we need to make sure our low-income working families in New Mexico are prioritized."
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is promising to end child hunger in New Mexico within a year. “Maybe that's too high of a goal, I don't care,” Lujan Grisham said at the Kids Count Conference. “New Mexico needs to institute universal food security services and programs in this state and every single philanthropic partner has to be dedicated to making sure no child in this state will ever go hungry again ..."