CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION EFFORTS & BUDGET UPDATE
Dear Friends and Neighbors,
I hope you wore blue yesterday. In the Capitol, and across the state, wearing blue meant that you support raising awareness and preventing child abuse in your community. We hosted a rally on the Capitol steps with Department of Health and Social Services Commissioner Val Davidson as our speaker. April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and we are taking steps to raise awareness and enact policies that will prevent child abuse. Last year our focus was Erin’s Law and Bree’s Law, that passed last June, and is now being implemented.
This year we are working on HCR 21, that calls on Governor Walker to join with the legislature in enacting policies to address Adverse Childhood Experiences, or ACES, in our state. ACEs are traumatic events that happen during childhood, five that happen directly to the child and five that happen in the environment the child lives in. Things like mental or physical abuse, having violence or mental illness in the home, and neglect are all ACEs. There is an ACEs quiz with the ten questions; your score is the sum of the ones experienced out of ten. Take the ACEs quiz here.
Alaskans have high ACEs scores and the high scores are linked to our high rates of domestic violence and sexual assault, our high rates of substance abuse, our high rates of child sexual abuse, our high rates of suicide, and contribute significantly to overall costs in Medicaid.
We hope that this month Alaskans across the state are taking a stand against violence in our homes and in our communities. Everyone, at every stage of their life, has a right to live free of violence and abuse. Together we can end violence and abuse in our state. If you’re interested in learning about the 5 Protective Factors, click here, and share with your family, friends, and neighbors.
Update on the Budget Bills
Constituent Teleconference Meetings April 7 & 14
I am hosting two more teleconferences leading up to the end of the Session. If you have any questions about the budget or any other legislation, we have scheduled Thursday evening meetings that began on March 31st and will go until April 14th from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. The call in number is 1-844-586-9085.
The 6th installment of the WorldMatters series will feature Dr. Yaso Thiru, professor at Alaska Pacific University, and Eric McCallum, President of Arctic Wire Rope & Supply. They will be speaking on “Can Business Change the World: Using Social Enterprise to Solve Community Problems.” Hear about their experiences working with social enterprises locally and internationally! The conversation will be moderated by Corey Hester, Communications and Program Director at the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce.