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Building Kentucky’s State Budget

Every two years, the Governor and legislature craft a biennial budget to guide the operation of state government. Kentuckians rely on the budget beyond what we may automatically think of, like roads, public parks, and public-school education. Kentucky families rely on the state budget to keep children safe, support kids' healthy development, and put kids on track for a prosperous future. Kentucky invests in kids by crafting a state budget that provides preventive oral health [...]

By | 2017-11-10T15:17:47+00:00 October 5th, 2017|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety, Economic Security, Education, Health, Youth Justice|

Kentucky Kids Need a State Budget Built for Them

Fall mornings with Kentucky’s hills and valleys blanketed in fog create a picture-perfect landscape. While I appreciated the view on a recent morning drive, I breathed a sigh of relief when the fog lifted. The budget news for state government in Kentucky has been dire for months as the looming pension crisis has created a fog around the state budget. Recent revenue forecasts predicting another budget shortfall to the tune of $200 million have made [...]

By | 2017-11-10T15:18:50+00:00 September 29th, 2017|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety, Economic Security, Education, Health, Youth Justice|

Prioritizing Youth Outcomes and Public Safety Benefits the Bottom Line

By Clarissa Mobley, a Master's student at the Kent School of Social Work and a KYA intern Success! That is what Kentucky families and children are achieving with juvenile justice reforms. Simultaneously, the state is seeing a reduction in the number of juvenile offenses. Secretary John Tilley of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet and Commissioner Carey D. Cockerell of the Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) recently presented on the success of reforms in [...]

By | 2017-11-10T15:19:55+00:00 September 27th, 2017|Blog, Youth Justice|

Kids Win When Congress Prioritizes Them

This post originally appeared as an op-ed in the Courier Journal on August 4, 2017. By Dr. Terry Brooks City BBQ features the best brisket I have ever eaten! It also features an array of “front porch gems of wisdoms” that make you both smile and think. Taken from a gas station in North Carolina, one reads: “If con is the opposite of pro, is Congress the opposite of progress?” It’s no secret that for many years [...]

By | 2017-08-09T17:09:20+00:00 August 9th, 2017|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety, Health, Youth Justice|

Celebrate “Cool” Wins for Kids this Summer

Summer is here! As Kentuckians, we can certainly count on experiencing hot and humid weather and can hopefully count on enjoying cool treats and days playing in the sprinkler. Another certainty we can count on during the Kentucky summer is the implementation of bills that were signed into law during the General Assembly. The Kentucky Constitution states that new laws go into effect 90 days after the legislative session adjourns. The 2017 regular session adjourned [...]

By | 2017-07-13T09:01:08+00:00 July 13th, 2017|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety, Economic Security, Youth Justice|

Guest Post: Opening Doors to a Positive Future

By Reggie Smith As a strong advocate for young adults, I am grateful to acknowledge the recent passing of SB 195 during the 2017 Kentucky legislative session. This bill provides youth with the opportunity to expunge certain felonies off of their criminal record. In 2016, the General Assembly passed HB 40 to allow adults to expunge certain felonies; youth, however, were still not allowed to expunge a number of felonies. SB 195 closed that gap [...]

By | 2017-07-05T17:05:56+00:00 July 5th, 2017|Blog, Youth Justice|

Coming Soon: 2017 National KIDS COUNT Data Book

Next Tuesday, June 13th, Kentucky Youth Advocates co-releases the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s KIDS COUNT Data Book. The Data Book includes data on all 50 states, and you can see how Kentucky is faring on 16 key indicators of child well-being. You can find the book on our website next week, and you can be the first to know about the book by signing up for email alerts and following us on Facebook and Twitter. Once [...]

40 Years of Showing Up for Kids

Since our founding in 1977, we at Kentucky Youth Advocates have made it our vision to make Kentucky the best place in America to be a kid. Forty years ago, with a much smaller staff and budget, advocates came together to find solutions for Kentucky’s kids. What we lacked in resources we made up for in our unwavering commitment to ensure a brighter future for our youngest citizens. As we kick off our 40th birthday [...]

By | 2017-05-22T11:53:29+00:00 May 22nd, 2017|Blog, Child Welfare & Safety, Youth Justice|

Ending the “One Size Fits All” Approach

A “one size fits all” approach works much better for some situations than others. A “one size fits all” hat with an adjustable strap, for example, could work for all. A “one size fits all” pair of shoes, on the other hand, wouldn’t work for most. And a “one size fits all” approach doesn’t work well in our youth justice system. Changes that have been implemented in recent months in juvenile court reflect that sentiment, and youth [...]

By | 2017-04-20T10:15:44+00:00 April 20th, 2017|Blog, Youth Justice|

Kids Win When Leaders Step Up

The 2017 legislative session recently wrapped up, and kids and families won on several fronts. The General Assembly took action on a number of Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children legislative priorities ranging from supporting children who have to be removed from their home due to abuse and neglect to promoting work when people return home from incarceration – a critical piece for the many Kentucky children who have had a parent incarcerated. Advocates are celebrating several [...]