Skip to comments.Ellison renews call to end sequester; says area's most vulnerable hardest hit
Posted on 06/25/2013 7:04:10 PM PDT by Tailgunner Joe
Parents in Community Action (PICA) Head Start Executive Director Alyce Dillon said her programs resources are stretched to the max.
If further federal cuts, known as sequester, are to occur, Dillon is forecasting a bleak future for those who could be dropped from Head Start, the federal preschool educational, health and nutritional program for disadvantaged children. The 43-year veteran of the program said Head Start in Hennepin County is already in a dire predicament.
Keep in mind, even prior to the sequester, we had 1,000 parents who were trying to get their children into the program (but could not access the program due to a lack of funding), said Dillon. Why this country should balance the budget on the backs of the poor and vulnerable children is beyond me. Its shocking and appalling.
With Fraser Head Start as the setting, 5th District Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison called on his fellow members of Congress to end federal cuts that he said are impacting the most vulnerable such as small children and the elderly. Ellison toured the Fraser Head Start program, 700 Humboldt Ave. N., to highlight how federal budget cuts are hurting Head Start programs all over the country and other services for the poor. According to the Congressman, Dillon and Head Start Director Rico Alexander, as many as 90 Hennepin County pre-kindergarten children will be kicked out of the program and 14 to 15 staff will be let go without an end to the sequester.
Ellison, co-chair of the Progressive Caucus, said he too is appalled at the inaction of the Republican-controlled Congress to end the sequester.
A core function of government is to make sure that small children have a good education, said Ellison. But for some people in Congress the cuts in government spending mean they can cut taxes for the better off and well-to-do. They dont think government has a responsibility to the poor. Im here to put a human face to the consequences of sequester. Some of the kids in this facility are coming from a shelter to begin with. That makes this facility even more important for these kids.
According to Ellison, Congress demonstrated its distain for the poor when it chose to furlough cuts to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Though Ellison is not opposed to FAA funding cuts, he feels there are other crucial services that should also be spared the ax.
When the FAA was going to have layoffs, Congress said we fly, our donors fly and that Friday we voted to have furloughs for the FAA. Head Start is just as important as the FAA.
For Alexander, cuts to Head Start means he will have the unenviable task of laying-off facility staff.
Were talking teachers, social service staff, transportation staff the staff that provides direct services to our kids, said Alexander, who has been with Head Start for 21 years and a director for the past five. Its not just the children; we provide a lot to the parents.
Alexander said his staff teaches parents how to provide better nutrition for their kids, better methods of scholastic preparedness and other parenting skills.
There are 90 children right here who wont be given the best opportunity to be successful in school (if federal cuts are made to Head Start), said Alexander.
Ellison said other real consequences of sequester include the possible loss of 1,000 civilian jobs at the Minnesota National Guard 133rd Airlift Wing.
If no action is taken, federal cuts to programs such as Head Start and job cuts at the 133rd will commence as early as October of this year.
We need to end the sequester. Our country can afford it, said Ellison.
Damn, Alice just might to have to find a “real” job
Why this country should finance the health, education, and nutrition of ghetto spawn on the backs of the hard-working middle class is beyond me. It's shocking and appalling.
Perhaps if they "clawed back" some of that $, they could "afford" other things.
Can’t Saudi Arabia or Iran help a brother out?
Yeah, I’m sure that 1% smaller INCREASE is hitting those women and minorities where it hurts. [facepalm]
Kill the whole damn program....it’s nothing but a baby sitting program....while momma sleeps the day away or works the streets.
If Ellison wants to end it, that is a clear message that we should DOUBLE it.
didn’t obama just grant the palestinian $100mill?? that’s before his $100mill vacation??? and about $200mill to the syrians??
They can find the money from the remaining 98%.
a 2% budget cut
ts fact is they’re targeting certain areas specifically to maximize impact
Ellison, the Islamic Rep. from Minnesota, who took his oath on the Koran?
That guy? He should be told the cost Obama’s vacations, this year alone, would be enough to make up for the sequester cuts.
Did he ask the first family to cancel thier million dollar vacation/ did he ask the IRS head to halt 70 million dollars in bonuses........nuff sed