Voluntary federal home visiting programs are inching closer and closer to the chopping block. Congress must reauthorize Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) funding months sooner than its September 30, 2014, expiration date. Unlike other funding, Congress cannot reauthorize MIECHV retroactively to ensure that activities don’t stop. If Congress fails to act now, programs will soon go without adequate staff, fewer parents and children will have access to the services they need for more independent and successful lives, and many programs will close by late summer. Starting them back up once funding is reauthorized will cost significant time and money that can be avoided with more timely action by Congress.
Congress must reauthorize home visiting now. That’s why the First Five Years Fund is taking part in a Home Visiting Day of Action on Wednesday, March 12.
We all know that voluntary home visiting works for families, kids, and communities. It’s time to tell Congress to invest in the future by continuing to invest in home visiting.