The Reader’s Viewpoint

President’s proposal to eliminate afterschool funding would imperil  children and families

“The President’s proposal to eliminate federal funding for afterschool programs is bad for children, bad for families, bad for our education system, bad for our workforce, bad for our economy and bad for America. Zeroing out funds for afterschool programs is short-sighted and dangerous. It ignores decades of research demonstrating the many ways afterschool programs support student success. It betrays millions of families who rely on these programs to keep their kids safe, inspire them to learn and provide parents with peace of mind during the sometimes-perilous after school hours. It is, quite simply, a terrible idea.

Last year, when President Trump proposed eliminating the 21st Century Community Learning Centers initiative – the chief federal funding stream for afterschool and summer learning programs – parents, educators, business leaders, community organizations and others responded with outrage. Congress listened, rejecting the proposal outright. Today, it seems, the administration learned nothing from that experience, renewing its attack by proposing a cut that would take afterschool programs away from 1.7 million children in Fiscal Year 2019.

That is not what the country wants. A 2017 Quinnipiac national poll found that 83 percent of voters oppose cutting funding for afterschool and summer programs, with just 14 percent supporting the administration’s position. There is good reason for the overwhelming public opposition to this proposal; it would imperil children and families across the country. Children would be denied safe places in the afternoon that their parents have come to count on. They would lose untold educational opportunities and their parents would lose the security that comes from knowing their children are engaged and learning under the watchful eye of caring adults once the regular school day ends.

As we did last year, we will work with lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle to defeat the proposal, protecting afterschool from this hard-hearted attack. Our country’s current federal investment in afterschool is modest, but crucial to families and communities, providing afterschool to 1.7 million children. But we have miles to go before every child who needs an afterschool program has one. For every child now in an afterschool program, two more are waiting to get in.

We will again mobilize the millions of parents, as well as educators, business leaders, community leaders, law enforcement officials and others who recognize the important work done in afterschool programs. Our new web page,www.AfterschoolforAmerica.org, is just the beginning. We will defeat this unwise proposal.”

By Jodi Grant, Executive Director, Afterschool Alliance 

The Afterschool Alliance is a nonprofit public awareness and advocacy organization working to ensure that all children and youth have access to quality afterschool programs. More information is available at www.afterschoolalliance.org.

Let’s get tough on crime

Why is crime so rampant in our country? One of the reasons is because we don’t give enough jail time. At every opportunity we have to make people placed in our jails pay for their own incarceration including tapping their pay checks for the rest of their lives. We are way too soft on criminals and sex offenders. Also let’s pass new laws protecting drivers who get into wrecks with uninsured drivers up to and including making good on innocent drivers losses in these wrecks which would come out of state funds. It’s the state that allows them to so easily drive without insurance. Also we should give life sentences with no possibility of parole to sex offenders and rapists and murderers. I’m all in favor of paying more taxes to give our police officers the means they need to fight crime.

Eugene Wiesner

Laurel

Upcoming Events

Saturday, July 20, 2019
Third Saturdays, 1 p.m., The Crossings, 600 Roundhouse Dr.
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Tuesdays, Noon, Beartooth Grill, 305 1st Ave. S.
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Fourth Tuesdays, 7 p.m., Eagles Hall, 313 W. Main, 628-4503
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
10 a.m., Laurel Public Library, 720 West Third Street, Laurel, 628-4961
Wednesday, July 24, 2019
Every Wednesday at 5:30 p.m., check www.laurelexchangeclub.org for more info. Find them on Facebook www.facebook.com/laurelexchangeclub . Email them to find out meeting time and to join: clubinfo@laurelexchangeclub.org The club will have a meeting or volunteer activity. Meeting location is Sid's East Side Bar & Grill on first and third Wednesdays of each month. Members and guests eat free.  Volunteer activity on the second Wednesday of each month. Check their facebook page for updates.  Every fourth Wednesday is for a club social activity. 
Tuesday, July 30, 2019
Tuesdays, Noon, Beartooth Grill, 305 1st Ave. S.

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