Many of you may have seen the Responsible Budget Coalition’s call to contact legislators today to pass a budget that fully funds human services. The RBC action alert can be seen here. Our own call to action is at the bottom of this post.
Today at 2 p.m., the Senate Appropriations I Committee will hear SB6, Amendment 1, the budget bill negotiated by Senate leadership. This bill includes funding for the remainder of FY17 for human services. We’ve been honest about the toll the lack of movement on a real solution is taking on our advocacy efforts. It’s hard to keep mobilizing staff and for staff to keep responding to our calls, again and again. This is frustrating work – honestly, much more frustrating than it should be. But I have one more piece of evidence that YOUR advocacy is working. Yesterday, as legislative staff were negotiating the budget bill, Safe from the Start – the funding that supports our Butterfly Project in Central – was not included in the bill. Because of the work of our lobbyists and the advocacy efforts led by our own Tiffanny Powell, the newest version of the Senate bill includes Safe from the Start. Your efforts made a difference.
Here are some of the items included in SB6, Amendment 1:
Safe from the Start: $600,000
Healthy Families $9.947 million
CCBYS $16.6 million
Redeploy $5.07 million
Homeless Youth $4.63 million
Children’s Home + Aid has slipped in support of this bill. Please call your Senators and Representatives to support SB6, Amendment 1.
Here are steps everyone can take below.
Here’s how you can help right now
CALL YOUR STATE REPRESENTATIVE
Need to lookup who your state rep is? >> Click Here Be sure to call their Springfield office
Sample call script: You will likely speak to a staff member. Please tell the staff member the following:
Vote yes on SB6, Amendment 1, which provides funding for the rest of this fiscal year for vital human services. SB6, Amendment 1, includes funding for:
- Safe from the Start
- Youth Services – including CCBYS, Homeless Youth and Redeploy
- Healthy Families
If you get the opportunity to speak directly with your state senator, consider sharing information about the impact that the budget stalemate has had on your program thus far. This could include reductions in numbers of children and/or families served and what you anticipate the impact of a continued impasse would be.
POST ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Sample Facebook post:
[Tag your Senator] We need a budget now to restore human services funding and get essential services and support to children and families in Illinois. Take action. #ILBudgetNow
[Include a link to the lookup page to encourage others to take action www.childrenshomeandaid.org/findmyelected ]
Sample Twitter post (tweet):
We need a budget now to restore human services funding [@local senator’s Twitter handle] #ILBudgetNow