July 2011 U.S. Poverty Laser Talk

Generate Media in Support of Head Start and Child Care in the Budget

Sample Letter to the Editor

Head Start, Early Head Start and child care services are smart investments; they enable low-income parents to work while their children receive the educational and social foundations they need for success in school and life. Despite proven success and the fact that these programs still only serve a fraction of all eligible children, Congress is considering drastic spending cuts to these and other important programs.

Head Start and quality child care programs work. Children in these programs end up staying in school longer, graduating from high school at higher rates, and getting better jobs as adults. This benefits them, as well as society as a whole through better health outcomes, reduced need for social services, lower criminal justice costs, and increased self-sufficiency. Unfortunately, Congress is looking to cut billions from the domestic discretionary budget, which could force tens of thousands of families to lose these critical early learning services, all the while protecting tax cuts for the wealthiest among us.

Congress needs to get its priorities straight. I urge Rep. ____________ and Sens. ______________ and _______________ to reject efforts to balance the budget on the backs of working families and instead work to maintain Head Start and child care services with an increase of $1.2 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) and total allotment of $8.1 billion for Head Start and Early Head Start in FY 2012.

What Is a Laser Talk?

A laser talk serves as a useful starting point for your advocacy work, whether as a talking points during a town hall meeting or as a primer for face-to-face meetings with candidates and elected officials. Follow up with more information and evidence supporting your points. And of course, adapt a laser talk to reflect your own experiences and why you care about the issue! For more on how to create your own laser talk, see the RESULTS Activist Toolkit: Create and Deliver Your EPIC Laser Talk and see our June 2011 U.S. Poverty Action for more background on these issues.