State of the Union Response: Statement From Shay Bilchik

Child Welfare League of America
Tuesday, 29 January 2002

Tonight the President brought the nation together to assess the state of our union four months after the events of September 11. The Child Welfare League of America applauds President Bush's ability to unite the nation against a common threat and his recognition of the fact that we must address a faltering economy. We are also pleased that the President listed children as a priority in several instances during his address.

As a country we rally behind the President's commitment to combat threats to our national security. The terrorist attacks on September 11 made us a nation more united and more attuned to the needs of our fellow citizens.

As President Bush and his administration work to implement the plans outlined in the State of the Union, the temptation may be to focus wholly on immediate objectives having to do with defense, antiterrorism measures, disaster relief, and economic stimulus. As we build our defenses to make our citizens safe and stimulate the economy to make our country strong, we must not hesitate to also serve the immediate needs of our youngest and most vulnerable - our children.

We hope the President's FY 2003 budget, which will be released on February 4, will move us forward as a nation to meet our commitments to ensure the well-being and security of our nation's children and their families. CWLA calls on the President to include in his budget proposal increased investments to address child abuse and neglect, teen pregnancy, health care, substance abuse, and youth development.

Strong, self-supporting families are vital to our nation's health and security and we look forward to working with the President in the months ahead.

Established in 1920, the Child Welfare League of America is the nation's oldest and largest membership-based child welfare organization. Headquartered in Washington, DC, CWLA strives to advance sound public policy in behalf of the three million abused and neglected children served by its more than 1,160 public and private member agencies.

For more information, or to contact Child Welfare League of America, see their website at: www.cwla.org

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