Thanks so much to all who attended our 2015 training series, High Quality Service Delivery from A-Z. We had a wonderful turnout to these informative workshops, and are always so pleased to meet with members and others working in the St. Louis Region, and also to showcase the wonderful presenters who are a part of our community. Stay tuned for information about next year's trainings!
Is is time to renew your membership?
Head on over to the Join CoCAN page to sign up, and take advantage of all the benefits of membership, especially practical and timely training throughout the year.
COCAN Policy Notes - December 2015
Governor Nixon recently decided to cut $46.1 million from the state budget for this year. Among the line items to be cut was $12.6 million to the Department of Mental Health for care providers and programs, $210,541 for a Juvenile Officer Pilot program, and $250,000 for medical homes for foster children. Health and social services were particularly hit hard by the announced cuts.
Shortly before the budget announcement was made, the Ferguson Commission had completed and submitted their report to the Governor. Among their many recommendations were several of great importance to the families COCAN members are dedicated to helping. These recommendations included ensuring early childhood developmental/educational programs meet the demand and follow a high-quality model; End hunger for children and families; and Expand Medicaid Eligibility to 138% of the federal poverty level.
The Missouri Children’s Leadership Council met on 12/03/15 in Columbia to determine their 2016 legislative priorities. Missouri KidsFirst is currently doing a survey in an effort to finalize their legislative priorities for the upcoming legislative session. Please visit their website to take the survey and have a voice in what is important to the children and families we serve.
Our COCAN committees will be focusing on plans for the upcoming year at our December retreat, and we will keep you informed, via these Policy Notes, of which legislative issues we find most pressing for the upcoming session. Please don’t hesitate to contact the Board if you have thoughts to share regarding this.
COCAN has been accepted as a new member of the Missouri Prevention Partners! This is an opportunity to work with others around the state on child abuse and neglect matters. By one of our Board members attending their November 9th retreat, we learned about the work they have been doing and some exciting opportunities for further collaboration.
Representative Bill Lant reported in October that his Committee on Child Abuse and Neglect will hold hearings this upcoming legislative session on the inadequate number of foster homes to serve the 13,000 kids now in State care. His newsletter states the numbers of kids being removed from homes due to Child Abuse Neglect continues to swell, particularly in urban areas.
In November, Representative Lant reported that the Committee on Child Abuse and Neglect has finalized their plans for reconfiguring the Juvenile Office, due to existing conflicts of interest. He anticipates the Missouri Supreme Court or the Missouri Legislature will implement a new set of recommended Statewide Standards, if the Justice Department approves these suggested solutions.
We wish you a very Happy Holiday Season and a prosperous 2016!