Advocacy Alert for New Choices

3 Jun
Dear friends,
I am writing to ask you to spend 5 minutes calling in support of the YWCA’s New Choices Program and the Drop-in Child Care Center. As most of you know, the New Choices Program removes the barrier of access to childcare for women who are working to improve their work skills and gain employment. Additional support such as credit classes, resume writing, job seeking and job keeping skills help women improve their economic stability.
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The proposed senate budget has zeroed out the funding for these services which would mean a significant reduction in work force development services available to women trying to become more economically secure. It could also mean a reduction in the hours of free drop-in childcare which is a major obstacle to parents trying to return to school or work. The YW currently receives $55,000 of combined Displaced Homemaker Funds and Divorce Filing Fees. This is the base annual income for the New Choices program which is supplemented by grants and contracts when we can get them.
Please call all of the key representatives of the House Appropriations Committee:

Nelson Dollar    (919) 715-0795     Nelson.Dollar@ncleg.net
Justin Burr          (919) 733-5908    Justin.Burr@ncleg.net
Bryan Holloway   (919) 733-5609   Bryan.Holloway@ncleg.net
Linda Johnson   (919) 733-5861    Linda.Johnson2@ncleg.net
Susan Fisher      (919) 715-2013   Susan.Fisher@ncleg.net

Background information:

*  The NC Senate’s budget elimination of funding for displaced homemaker programs will have a devastating impact on the ability of the YW’s New Choices Program and 34 other programs across NC to provide services that help participants get reintegrated into our economy.
*  Last year, 5,790 individuals received training through NC’s Displaced Homemaker Programs. That training helped them learn job skills, achieve financial literacy, and work toward community college certification, all skills necessary to move them from dependence to independence. They include the persistently underemployed, a category where NC has the sad distinction of ranking fourth in the nation.
*  The Senate’s budget redirects monies from Divorce Filing Fees, which has funded Displaced Homemaker Programs, to the Domestic Violence Fund. The new legislation does not require workforce development services be provided by domestic violence programs.

The main points to make are:
If the house does not move to reinstate the monies, the impact will be stark:

*  35 Existing Displaced Homemaker programs will be eliminated
*  Unemployed and dislocated workers will have far fewer workforce development programs to help them access the skills and support needed to reenter the workforce
*  Domestic violence services, while very important, are targeted to victim assistance and awareness programs
*  By definition, not all displaced homemakers are domestic violence victims, thus many “displaced homemakers” will lose vital workforce development services with the elimination of DH programs.

beth maczka blueThank you for your time and attention to this important issue!
Beth Maczka
YWCA Executive Director

2 Responses to “Advocacy Alert for New Choices”

  1. Carmen Ramos-Kennedy June 4, 2013 at 3:14 am #

    Called all.

    Carmen

  2. YWCA of Asheville June 4, 2013 at 3:29 pm #

    Thank you so much Carmen!

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