Salt Lake City — Voices for Utah Children is pleased to announce that Representative Lowry Snow (R–Santa Clara) and Utah Moms for Clean Air have been selected to receive our 2016 Children’s Champion Award. The Children’s Champion Award is an annual recognition to a person or group that has made a positive difference in the lives of Utah children.
During the 2016 Utah legislative session, Representative Snow sponsored House Bill 405, which ended the practice of sentencing children to life in prison without a possibility of parole.
“Representative Snow recognizes a fundamental principle that guides all our work: children are not little adults,” said Lincoln Nehring, CEO of Voices for Utah Children.
Representative Snow also sponsored House Bill 42, which would have allocated $17.5 million in ongoing funds for competitive grants for school districts to expand full-day kindergarten programs. HB 42 was geared toward students who are most in need academically, including students from low-income families and others at risk of learning struggles. Expanding kindergarten from half- to full-day programs is a key strategy for leveling the academic playing field for children who begin school without the skills they need to thrive.
“We were disappointed when HB 42 was tabled,” said Nehring. “But there were many positive conversations about the need to improve early education in Utah thanks to Representative Snow’s efforts.”
Representative Snow continued to advocate for investments in early childhood education as a vocal supporter of Senate Bill 101, which expanded access to high-quality Pre-K for Utah children experiencing intergenerational poverty.
Utah Moms for Clean Air (UMCA) is a coalition of community advocates that has fought for better air quality in Utah since 2007. They have supported policy solutions such as improving transportation infrastructure to reduce emissions, holding polluters accountable, and making schools safer with idle-free policies and low emission buses. In December of 2015, UMCA took their message to the international stage. They sent a delegation, complete with youth ambassadors, to attend the 21st Conference of the Parties — the historic United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change — in Paris, France.
“Utah Moms for Clean Air has truly earned the title of Children’s Champion,” said Nehring. “They have mobilized thousands of Utahns to defend children’s health.”
Representative Snow and Utah Moms for Clean Air will be honored at the Children’s Champion Award Luncheon hosted by Voices for Utah Children on September 22, 2016 from 11:30-1:30 at Little America Hotel in Salt Lake City. Registration for the event is available at https://secure.utahchildren.org/champions-luncheon-2016.
For 30 years now, Voices for Utah Children has called on our state, federal and local leaders to put children’s needs first. But the work is not done. The children of 30 years ago now have children of their own. Too many of these children are growing up in poverty, without access to healthcare or quality educational opportunities.
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Make a tax-deductible donation to Voices for Utah Children—or join our Network with a monthly donation of $20 or more. Network membership includes complimentary admission to Network events with food, socializing, and opportunity to meet child advocacy experts. And don't forget to join our listserv to stay informed!
We look forward to the future of Voices for Utah Children and we hope you will be a part of our next 30 years.
Special thanks to American Express for sponsoring our 30th Anniversary Year.