White House Conference Senate Bill Filed!Senate Bill for a White House Conference was Filed after CWLA's Advocacy Day
Senate Bill to Re-Establish White House Conference on Children and Youth Introduced by Senator Landrieu
As you know, CWLA has been working hard to get Congress to support a White House Conference on Children and Youth. As a result of our combined work with you, we now have legislation in both houses of Congress towards this effort.
On Thursday, March 13, Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) introduced a bill to re-establish a White House Conference on Children and Youth (S 2771).
The introduction of this bill means that there is now a bill in the Senate (S 2771) and in the House (HR 5461). The House bill now has 43 sponsors. The Senate bill's original cosponsors include Senators Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Senators Chuck Hagel (R-NE), Christopher Dodd (D-CT), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), Evan Bayh (D-IN), Robert Casey (D-PA), John Kerry (D-MA), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Tim Johnson (D-SD).
Both bills direct the President to issue a call to hold a White House Conference on Children and Youth in 2010 with a series of meetings in 2009 that will lead up to the conference. The legislation creates a policy committee that is selected by both the President and the bipartisan leadership in Congress. The committee then oversees such key issues as holding meetings around the country in preparation, the number and selection of delegates, and an agenda to be published in the federal register.
The first such conference was held in 1909 with one then being held every ten years through 1970, at which point they stopped taking place. The only other similar White House event is the White House Conference on Aging which started in the 1960's and has taken place every ten years since. In more recent Aging Conferences such as the 1993-94 event, approximately 900 separate state and local gatherings were held independently from the conference, but recognized for their input and suggestions. Such will be the model for the White House Conference on Children and Youth in 2010.
CWLA called for the restoration of the event last fall and sees this an opportunity to focus community and national attention on the nation's most vulnerable children, and as a result, on the most critical issues facing children in the United States in the 21st century.
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