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 families, we have developed a nationally recognized two-generation program that serves as a model for other service providers across the state and beyond.
Colorado Teen Parent Collaborative (TPC)
TPC is 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.
With an active Public Policy Committee, FloCrit is focused on the strategic objective to advocate for legislative and regulatory policies that address the social determinants that affect the health and wellbeing of pregnant and parenting teens, their children, and extended family. This includes supporting FloCrit students, alums, and staff as they testify in favor of key bills, policies, and funding.
Sign up for FloCrit Activators, a group of community members who are interested in advocacy efforts to support pregnant and parenting teenagers and their children. Becoming a part of this group 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.
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Examples of Previous Public Policy Work
HB 1042: “Colorado Teen Parent Driver’s License Program”
In 2022, the obstacles that students and their partners faced in obtaining a driver’s license became an undeniable issue that Florence Crittenton Services decided to address. A driver’s license provides young parents the privilege of operating a vehicle, independence, and the ability to transport themselves to school and work. However, after providing food, shelter and clothing, many families could not find it in their budget for driver’s education or driver’s license fees.
We wanted our students to have the confidence of being well trained members of the driving community. Therefore, FloCrit advocated for proper funding be allocated in support of teen parents earning the privilege of driving. Additionally, FloCrit stipulated that financial assistance be given to those that seek driver’s training courses and fees to legally operate a vehicle.
Result of bill: Passed and signed into law on March 3rd, 2022
HB 16-1227: “Colorado Child Care Assistance Program, Eligibility Criteria for Teen Parents and Domestic Violence Survivors.”
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.
Result of bill: 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.