CalFresh: Better Food for Better Living
CalFresh, California's name for food stamps, or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), can add to many WIC families' food budgets and help them put healthy and nutritious food on the table, while also stimulating our economy and supporting communities! Check out our
CalFresh information and toolkit
, and refer your families!
Self-Care at Work
is an ongoing challenge for many. If you're burning the candle at both ends, it may be time to reflect upon your current self-care regimen. Try these simple strategies to help restore balance and productivity in your daily life.
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Federal Budget Deadline Fast Approaching
Members of Congress are on recess, so most will be at home in their districts until April 24th. CWA is challenging California WIC agencies to host all 55 California representatives by November 1st - will you be the one to host your district's member of Congress? Meanwhile, Congress is about to make funding decisions for the rest of this year and is starting to consider FY18 budget proposals, with the President's
out and more details to come. If they cannot agree on finalizing the FY17 budget funding by April 28, much of the federal
government will shut down
. Meanwhile attention is on special elections for seats vacated by new Cabinet members, with
election just finished and
ACTION:Take the opportunity to reach out to your representative and invite them for a visit to your WIC site!
CA Legislative Season
Policy hearings are underway and CWA is supporting a number of bills including nutrition and access to food benefits
, parental leave
, anti-lunch shaming
, sugar-sweetened beverage warnings
, improving access to school lunch through Medi-Cal
applications and a baby home visiting program through CalWORKS,
. ACTION: Stay abreast of these and other bills on our
State Policy page
as they move through the legislative process in coming months.
Mother-Baby Friendly Workplace Awards - Call for Nominations
On May 23rd at the State Capital, the
California Breastfeeding Coalition will recognize
businesses for their exemplary efforts to support lactating employees by creating breastfeeding policies, ensuring all staff are aware of their polices and talking with expectant mothers about accommodating their breastfeeding needs when they return to work. These criteria ensure compliance with existing California and Federal laws requiring employers to provide time and space for employees who want to express their milk.
Accepting nominations now!
Please nominate businesses in your area that have a workplace lactation accommodation policy or guidelines and support employees to continue breastfeeding when returning to work.
Another Annual Conference Wrapped Up!
We had a great time last week at our 25th Annual Conference,
Engaging Families for Thriving Communities
. The 900 attendees pushed hard from dawn to evening: learning, meeting, networking and still fitting in wellness activities. The trade show buzzed with activity. WIC teams from around the state came together for some healthy competition in our CWA Go! Scavenger hunt. We welcomed our colleagues from sister organizations to learn beside us. Our thanks to everyone for this team effort to support our professional development and learning.
Check out the photos and videos on
CWA's Facebook page
New WIC Watch now Available
The Spring Conference Edition of our member magazine,
, is now available online. Learn about new resources, upcoming events, and legislative activities. Enjoy reading about local WIC agency successes in breastfeeding, wellness, and data usage. Get inspired by all that CWA members are doing!
Look for hard copies to be mailed to local agencies soon. Until then, view and share the
Email us your stories
for the Fall Edition by September 1.
Asthma Impact Model: Indoor Air Quality
The Central Valley's families and children suffer with unacceptably high rates of asthma, with 1 in 6 kids in the
San Joaquin Valley
suffering from asthma, mostly due to outdoor air pollution. Ongoing efforts to reduce these rates, using the
Asthma Impact Model
, launched in 2013, include the Central California Asthma Collaborative, Clinica Sierra Vista, Kaiser Permanente, The California Endowment, the Social Impact Bond and other partners. Recent efforts are addressing
indoor air quality
to assist families in improving home quality as one strategy to reduce asthma attacks and visits to the ER.
Anti "Lunch Shaming" Legislation Passed
You may have heard of
in the news - students being
embarrassed by their schools
when they don't have enough money to pay for lunch at school. Now
New Mexico has taken the lead
on legislation that outlaws shaming children whose parents are behind on school lunch payments with the
Hunger-Free Students' Bill of Rights
The law's passage is a victory for anti-hunger activists, who have long been critical of lunch-shaming practices that single out children. School lunch debt is a problem -
According to the School Nutrition Association
over three-quarters of school districts had uncollected debt at the end of the last school year. Policy advocates that supported the bill worked closely with school nutrition departments to draft a bill that still allowed school districts to attempt to collect school lunch debt.
have also introduced anti-shaming legislation.
TDaP During Pregnancy Protects Babies
new study in Pediatrics
shows that when pregnant women receive the tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis (TDaP) vaccine during pregnancy, it is highly effective in protecting newborns against pertussis (whooping cough) in the first two months of life. Researchers followed nearly 150,000 babies in California, and of the 103 cases of whooping cough in infants that were reported after one year, 80 were in babies of mothers unvaccinated during pregnancy. Though the
that all pregnant women receive the TDaP vaccine, in 2015 less than half of pregnant women in the U.S. had received it.
Kudos: CDPH Releases New WIC-Maternal Data
Using 2013-2014 Maternal and Infant Health Assessment (MIHA) data, this CDPH report presents key indicators of maternal and infant health for women who participate in the WIC Program during pregnancy, such as health status before pregnancy, service and health insurance utilization, pregnancy intention and more. The data compares eligible and non-eligible WIC participants and non-participants. Demographics provide more details on women who participate in WIC during pregnancy. For the 35 counties with the greatest number of births, c
ounty and regional data snapshots provide a comparison between prenatal WIC participants in each local area (i.e. county or region) and prenatal WIC participants in the rest of the state. This information can be used by state and local WIC agencies to identify opportunities to improve the health and well-being of women and infants enrolled in the WIC program. ACTION:Find the
MIHA Data Snapshots of Prenatal WIC Participants: 2013-2014
. For more information, please
Supporting Maternal Mental Health in CA
If you viewed
Dark Side of the Full Moon
with us at last week's Conference, you're keenly aware of the impact of
on American families and communities. California's Task Force on the Status of Maternal Mental Health Care, just released a roadmap for supporting maternal
mental health in CA. The report identifies actionable items for a collective impact with responsibility in pediatric, obstetric, lactation, psychiatric, nursing and medical care, health insurance coverage, public health, hospitals, employers and community organizations. We can all support maternal mental health. ACTION:
the report, executive summary or recommendations, and
with the click of a few buttons you can send a letter to Congress asking them to fund the maternal metal health portion of the 21st Century Cures Act: the Bringing Postpartum Depression Out of the Shadows Act.
National Prevention Strategy Report
The Advisory Group on Prevention, Health Promotion, and Integrative and Public Health has released its final report on the National Prevention Strategy, entitled "Fulfilling the Legacy." The report includes key messages, an overview, recommendations for updating the Strategy, and past actions of the Advisory Group. The original report, National Prevention Strategy, released in 2011, includes key concepts and strategies for improving the health of populations and health reform approaches.