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Public Policy and Advocacy

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Florence Crittenton Services is the leading advocate for teen families in Colorado. Through decades of experience working with teen mothers, young dads, and their children, we have developed a nationally recognized two-generation program that serves as a model for other service providers across the state and beyond. We have worked for years on strengthening public awareness around the issues affecting teen families, and advocating for programs and policies that help them succeed. In 2014, Florence Crittenton Services was instrumental in establishing the Colorado Teen Parent Collaborative (TPC), a statewide group of organizations that raise public awareness, share resources, and advocate for public policy benefiting teen parents and their children. In partnership with the TPC, Colorado Children’s Campaign, and the Women’s Foundation of Colorado, FloCrit acts as an expert resource to elected officials as they make decisions that impact our state’s families.

FloCrit’s public policy leaders are focused on the strategic objective to advocate for legislative and regulatory policies that address the social determinates that affect the health and wellbeing of pregnant and parenting teens, their children, and extended family. We have seen the powerful outcomes for Colorado’s families when FloCrit students, alums, and staff testify in support of key bills, policies, and funding. In 2019, FloCrit’s community supported HB19-1263 Funding for Full-Day Kindergarten. FloCrit alumna Valeria E. appeared at the Capitol to provide testimony stressing the value full day kindergarten curriculum would provide for her and her family. FloCrit CEO Suzanne Banning, and other staff members, are often seen at the Capitol testifying in support of legislative initiatives, most recently in support of SB21-236 Increase Capacity Early Childhood Care & Education with Women’s Foundation of Colorado Director of Programs, Alison Friedman Phillips.

FloCrit Advocacy Activators

Florence Crittenton Services is one of the leading advocate for teen families in Colorado. Through decades of experience working with teen mothers, young dads, and their children, we have developed a nationally recognized two-generation program that serves as a model for other service providers across the state and beyond. We have worked for years on strengthening public awareness around the issues affecting teen families, and advocating for programs and policies that help them succeed.

FloCrit’s public policy leaders are focused on the strategic objective to advocate for legislative and regulatory policies that address the social determinates that affect the health and wellbeing of pregnant and parenting teens, their children, and their extended family. We have seen the powerful outcomes for Colorado’s families when FloCrit students, alums, and staff testify in support of key bills, policies, and funding.

As more of our community becomes interested in advocacy efforts to support pregnant and parenting teenagers and their children, we have created a special group to keep you all informed. Introducing our newest information channel—FloCrit’s Advocacy Activators—which will give you the insights and tools you need to get in contact with your elected officials when there is an issue important to our community of pregnant and parenting teenagers, their children, and extended families. You can expect to hear from us with action items, email and voicemail templates, and any exciting updates around the issues we are most focused on.

Sign up to be a part of the FloCrit Advocacy Activators email list below.

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During the Colorado 2016 General Assembly, Florence Crittenton Services spearheaded efforts to propose HB 16-1227: “Colorado Child Care Assistance Program, Eligibility Criteria for Teen Parents and Domestic Violence Survivors.” Together with partners in the Colorado Children’s Campaign, Mile High United Way, The Women’s Foundation of Colorado, the Colorado Coalition Against Domestic Violence, several school districts including Denver, Greeley and Aurora, and members of the Teen Parent Collaborative, Florence Crittenton Services negotiated for months with county officials, human service providers, and state legislators to draft a successful bill. We facilitated dialogues directly between teen parents—both mothers and fathers—and lawmakers at the state capitol to identify priorities and areas for compromise. We are especially grateful to Representatives Daniel Kagan (D) and Brian Del Grosso (R), and to Senators Owen Hill (R) and Larry Crowder (R) who sponsored the bill and worked tirelessly for its success. As a result of these efforts, HB 16-1227 was co-sponsored by an incredible 58 legislators, both Republican and Democrat, in a welcome demonstration of bipartisan cooperation.  Additionally, 38 community organizations signed on in support. HB 16-1227 passed the House and the Senate of the Colorado General Assembly with 90 of 100 members voting yes.

On May 19, 2016, Governor John Hickenlooper visited the Florence Crittenton Campus to sign HB 16-1227 into law and remove the child support requirement for teen parents and domestic abuse survivors. As a result, teen parents across the state of Colorado who are working towards a high school diploma can access CCCAP support without first pursuing child support through the legal system. With CCCAP support, their children can obtain a quality early childhood education center and become kindergarten-ready, and both mother and child can make education a priority to break the cycle of poverty.

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