After Labor Day, federal legislators will return to the nation’s capital for a few weeks before adjourning in October for the final campaign push before the elections. During that short but critical time period, the Academy will be advocating for congressional action on several child health priorities that were left unfinished before the August recess. These priorities include:
- Zika funding: Members of Congress left Washington without passing a funding package to combat Zika virus. Upon their return to Capitol Hill, the Academy will continue to urge legislators to pass a strong Zika funding response that does not divert funds from other health programs or include harmful riders.
- Child nutrition reauthorization: Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) and ranking member Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) are aiming to bring the bipartisan Child Nutrition Integrity and Access Act of 2016 (S. 3136), which reauthorizes federal child nutrition programs, up for consideration in the full Senate.
- Appropriations: Congress has until Sept. 30 to pass a spending measure for fiscal year 2017. Before then, the House and Senate will need to agree on an omnibus spending package or decide to pass a continuing resolution, a short-term spending agreement to avoid a federal government shutdown.
- Child welfare legislation: The House passed the Family First Prevention Services Act, a comprehensive, bipartisan effort to strengthen the child welfare system. The Academy is urging the Senate to pass the legislation as written without delay.
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