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2020 ELECTION GUIDE — YOUR VOICE MATTERS

The Colorado Children's Campaign positions on 2020 ballot measures impacting kids and family:

Proposition EE

Tobacco - Vape Tax: YES

Amendment B

Gallagher Repeal: YES

Proposition 118

Paid Medical and Family leave: YES

Measure 2B

Boulder Local Housing Ordinance: YES

Proposition 116

State Income Tax Reduction: NO

Proposition 117

Enterprise with Fees Subject to Voter Approval: NO

Amendment 76

Citizen Requirement for Voting : NO

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Colorado has made important strides toward improving conditions for kids since the Great Recession, but the COVID pandemic and resulting economic downturn threaten to set our state back in critical areas. This year’s election offers voters and candidates an opportunity to learn from previous economic downturns. Here are the most critical issue areas that the Colorado Children’s Campaign believes need to be uplifted with your vote this November.

Maternal Health: Healthy moms are essential to ensuring kids get off to the best start.

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Moms need to be physically and mentally healthy in order to be the kind of parents they want and need to be for their kids. However, policies and practices driven by individual, structural and institutional racism mean that not all families have an equal chance at a healthy start.

We can help families by ensuring access to family planning services, improving access to community birth workers, and improving the quality of mental and physical health care provided to pregnant and postpartum people.

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Among Colorado women who gave birth in the previous year, 1 in 9 reported experiencing postpartum depressive symptoms.

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A separate survey found that nearly 1 in 3 new moms in Colorado had elevated anxiety scores on a commonly used screening tool.

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Nationally, half of women who had recently given birth and were diagnosed with depression did not get the treatment they needed.

Learn more about child health impacts Colorado kids and families

School Finance: Adequate education spending ensures kids and families have access to important learning resources.

A large body of research finds that school funding is strongly linked to student performance and academic outcomes. Yet Colorado lags behind the nation (48th out of 50 states) in dollars spent per pupil, and the amount of dollars invested in Colorado’s students varies significantly between districts due to the state’s school funding formula, and the role played by local property wealth and voters’ ability to invest more in education.

We can reimagine the potential of our education system and our children by transforming our school finance system. Targeted investments in our students and communities living in poverty and experiencing the most barriers to opportunity are especially important.

Group of Kids in class room

SOME RESEARCH FINDS THAT STUDENTS FACING POVERTY REQUIRE 2.5 TIMES THE FUNDING THEIR HIGHER-INCOME PEERS RECEIVE—YET IN COLORADO, THE REVENUES PER STUDENT DIFFER ONLY SLIGHTLY BETWEEN THE HIGHEST AND LOWEST POVERTY DISTRICTS.

STATE AND LOCAL REVENUES PER COLORADO STUDENT, HIGHEST AND LOWEST POVERTY QUARTILES

Highest Poverty

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Total Revenue
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Lowest Poverty

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Total Revenue
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STATE LOCAL

Read this fact sheet to learn about the ways that we can re imagine the potential of our education system!

Ask your candidates how they’ll protect the 2020 Census

Child Care and Preschool: Everyone benefits when Colorado families have access to affordable, high-quality child care and preschool.

Child care and preschool allow parents to work and ensures kids are in stimulating, safe environments during the day. However, too many Colorado families can’t find affordable, quality early care and education close to where they live or work and the COVID crisis has disrupted the already fragile early childhood sector.

By supporting access to quality child care and preschool, with a particular focus on families with very young children, we can help families succeed economically and support young children’s healthy development.

Children In class learning from teacher

HALF OF COLORADANS LIVE IN CHILD CARE DESERTS, AND BLACK AND HISPANIC/LATINO COLORADANS ARE MORE IMPACTED THAN OTHERS.

PERCENT OF COLORADANS LIVING IN CHILD CARE DESERTS BY RACE/ETHNICITY, 2018

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Learn more about the policies and practices related to early childhood learning and healthy development in Colorado here

Income Supports: We all benefit when Colorado families facing the greatest barriers to economic security have the opportunity to thrive.

Safe and stable housing is essential to child well-being. However, many Colorado families are struggling to find an affordable place to call home, as housing costs have skyrocketed in many parts of the state and incomes have not kept pace.

Housing insecurity puts families at risk of homelessness and negatively impacts health and education outcomes for kids. We can help by ensuring families have access to affordable, quality, safe housing without having to move frequently.

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The hardships and stressors associated with poverty can harm children of any age—but research shows that poverty experienced during early childhood is particularly damaging to a child’s development. One study found that people who experienced poverty between birth and age 5:

Hardship and Stressors

Boost income $3,000

The same study found that boosting the income of families with young children by $3,000 per year was associated with better outcomes in adulthood—including a 17% increase in adult earnings and more hours worked.

Learn more about the policies and practices related family economic security here

OUR VISION FOR A BETTER WORLD

This is where you come in

Little Girl with Flag

TALK TO YOUR CANDIDATES ABOUT KIDS TODAY

Kids do better when the adults put them first at the Colorado State Capitol and in Washington, D.C. With this information and much more available in KIDS COUNT in Colorado!, you can speak up for kids whether you hold office or want those who represent you to reflect your priorities.

We urge you to ask hard questions of yourself and those who represent you:

What is our responsibility to Colorado children? If some of our kids aren’t doing well, what does that say about us as a state? Should we be proud of a Colorado in which only some children can truly aim high?

Your job will be to ensure Colorado has a prosperous future. If you place children, especially very young children, and their families at the heart of your policy and public investment strategy, then we can make that happen together. We must acknowledge, though, that children of different backgrounds face greater distances to opportunity and so we must do all we can to ensure our focus begins with these children and families. How will you make kids facing the most barriers a priority?

If we want our own kids to be well, happy and smart, we need to make that true for all Colorado kids. The 2020 election is a huge opportunity to make a big step in the right direction. Working together, we can ensure all our elected officials start their first day knowing the issues and opportunities facing Colorado kids. Thank you!

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Fact Sheets

District Fact Sheets

We created these district-specific fact sheets for legislative candidates to learn about child well-being in their districts. Advocates are welcome to download them and put them in the hands of candidates as well. You can find much more data, organized by county, in our annual KIDS COUNT in Colorado! report as well as the KIDS COUNT Data Center. You can access both at www.coloradokids.org/data.

Request our Election Guide here