CWA Flash E-Newsletter - June 30, 2020
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Alcohol and Substance Abuse  
The stresses of the pandemic present different challenges for addressing alcohol and substance abuse and addiction. New resources have become available from the National Institute of Health and HHS with a free national hotline available 24/7 in English and Spanish for treatment referral and information. 
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Cute Animal Videos Really Might Help!  
Everyone needs a mood boost occasionally, and right now we're dealing with a pandemic, racial inequity and resulting protests, a tanking economy, and apparently murder hornets. And if some of us get those boosts - or positive emotions, as they're referred to among psychologists - from watching cute animal videos, experts say that's fine. 
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USDA Waivers Extended 
After considerable advocacy from NWA, CWA, members of Congress and Senators, and a request from CDPH WIC, USDA has granted the request to extend the waivers through the end of September. The waivers allowing WIC staff to serve families remotely have been critical to maintaining staff and participant safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, and local agency directors throughout California report high engagement and customer satisfaction with this method of delivering services. As COVID-19 infection rates are rising in many states, and WIC sites are not uniformly equipped to re-open safely, we are glad that local agencies will be able to continue prioritizing the safety of the WIC community, and families will have more flexibility within the WIC food package to meet their nutrition needs in this era of "panic buying" and food supply chain issues. Shout out to CA Congressman Josh Harder whose Dear Colleague letter was instrumental in the extension of waivers until Sept. 30. 
School Food Flexibilities Through June 2021
With uncertainties about the format of schools in the fall due to the pandemic, USDA announced flexibilities for school food service through June 2021. Flexibilities will include meal patterns, serving meals outside of group settings, mealtimes and options for parent/guardian pickup of meals. Summer meal flexibilities are currently being used to ensure kids get students over the summer. Families can use the USDA FNS's MealsforKids interactive site finder to locate free meals for children ages 18 and under this summer at 67,000 sites across the nation. 
State Updates 
The CA State Legislature voted last week to approve a new State Budget for FY 20-21, which begins July 1. The new spending plan is very similar to the proposal they voted upon on June 15th, and the Governor signed it late yesterday, along with the various "trailer bills" that help to implement the new spending package. Due to the COVID19 pandemic, legislators and the Governor were forced to make tough decisions to cope with a $54 billion shortfall, after having started the year with a large surplus, and put together a package that relies heavily on federal relief and additional tax proceeds that they hope to receive later this summer. The plan protects and rejects cuts to aging programs, CalWORKS, Medi-Cal and to Prop 56 tobacco tax funded programs. Some "trigger cuts" will need to be made later this year if the additional revenues do not materialize. CWA will continue to monitor things through the summer and fall. We are grateful to the Legislature and to the Governor and his agencies and departments for allowing great flexibility for WIC staff during the pandemic. 
P-EBT Application Extended to July 15th  
As of last week California had issued 2,170,877 cards for 3,007,527 P-EBT eligible children and continues to work through pending applications. An estimated 3.8 million California children are eligible for P-EBT. To support the goal of reaching as many eligible children as possible, the P-EBT application is extended deadline to July 15th! Final eligibility decisions will not be made until the end of July, and families who have already applied but have a pending eligibility decision, do not need to apply again. DSS will continue to work on all applications received between May 22 and July 15 through the month of July to ensure they have verified as many children as possible eligible for P-EBT.  
CWA News
Empowered Young Families Unite, Inspire, Uplift!
The theme of CWA's 28th Annual Conference and Trade Show, Aug. 24-28, will focus on uncomfortable realities and promising strategies to ensure young families have a bright future. The 5-day event will cover nutrition, breastfeeding and early feeding, leadership and management, and wellness. A sample of topics includes breastfeeding support during the COVID pandemic, identifying excess weight loss in WIC infants, compassion fatigue and self-care, WIC online grocery delivery and pick up, and best practices for telehealth. The Trade Show will run the full event with designated times to engage with vendors to learn about products and share from the front lines, the needs of families. A variety of wellness breaks will be provided twice each day. For the agenda , FAQs on attending a virtual conference, or to register check here . 
Webinar Opportunities
The Baby-Led Approach to Feeding: What Does the Research Say?       
An emerging body of research supports a baby-led approach to feeding as a safe and efficacious way to start solid foods. In this presentation, Katie Ferraro, RD and mother of 7 children, will share the current research into baby self-feeding as it pertains to growth and development, prevention of picky eating, acquisition of essential nutrients from foods, choking risk and achieving developmental milestones. July 16 Register now .
Supporting Responsive Feeding Using Baby Behavior      
Feeding can be one of the biggest challenges for parents of toddlers. In this session, Dr. Heinig will describe developmental reasons for many of the most frustrating toddler behaviors that may lead to non-responsive feeding practices. Attendees will also learn how extending the Baby Behavior curriculum to older infants and toddlers can be a positive way to promote responsive feeding during the toddler years. July 22 Register now. Presented as part of the California Pediatric Obesity Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network in partnership with CDPH/MCAH, WIC and Obesity Prevention, and California Breastfeeding Coalition. CE units are available for the live webinars.  
Our Top News Picks
U.S. Schools Likely to Limit On-Campus Instruction This Fall
The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a strong statement in favor of resuming on-campus education this fall wherever and whenever they can do so safely. The American Academy of Pediatrics' guidance "strongly advocates that all policy considerations for the coming school year should start with a goal of having students physically present in school," saying "schools are fundamental to child and adolescent development and well-being." The AAP cites "mounting evidence" that transmission of the coronavirus by young children is uncommon, partly because they are less likely to contract it in the first place, and cites concerns that remote learning may result in severe learning loss and increased social isolation. Despite these recommendations, many school districts around the country are announcing hybrid on-campus/distance learning schedules this year, as well as preparing for total campus closures should public health safety necessitate them.  
Stressed Parents Don't Enforce Screen Time Rules
In a study that won't surprise many parents, researchers at University of Guelph found that parents of young children reporting high levels of life or parenting stress were less likely to monitor and limit their kids' screen use and more likely to use their own devices in front of their children. The study's findings are important given that previous research has shown that high screen use is linked to health issues in children, including lower activity levels, obesity, language delays, and sleep problems. This study comes at a time when many parents are experiencing high levels of stress related to the far-reaching impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Interactive Map Pinpoints Urgent Needs of Vulnerable Populations Through the COVID Crisis
Right now, state and local leaders, government agencies and others are gathering resources to find and help those who are most in need during the COVID-19 crisis. To help target their efforts, the Public Health Alliance of Southern California has released the COVID-19 Healthy Places Index Resource Map, a powerful interactive online tool that exposes how the COVID-19 crisis is exacerbating existing health disparities based on race, poverty, and other socioeconomic and environmental factors. 
Annie E. Casey KIDS COUNT Data Book Released 
The 31st edition of the Annie E. Casey Foundation's KIDS COUNT® Data Book has been released, describing how children across the United States were faring before the coronavirus pandemic began. This year's publication continues to deliver the Foundation's annual state rankings and the latest available data on child well-being. It also identifies multi-year trends - comparing statistics from 2010 to 2018. As always, policymakers, researchers and advocates can continue using this information to help shape their work and build a stronger future for children, families and communities. 
Listos CA Emergency Preparedness Resources 
The Listos California Emergency Preparedness Campaign, anchored at the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services, is striving to ensure our most diverse and vulnerable populations receive the information they need to be prepared when disaster strikes. The campaign has prepared a Dropbox here filled with information you can share with your community via social media, newsletters and/or visits with your local community. Videos and graphics can be used in newsletters and social media. Please review this Table of Contents here to better understand how to share this lifesaving information with clients and community partners. Listos California can provide additional materials upon request, including an in-language Disaster Ready Guide or COVID-19 Guidance for Immigrant Californians. Should you have any questions or need additional materials, please contact Houa Vang at
Birth Settings Report 
Released by the National Academy of Science, Engineering and Medicine is areport on birth outcomesin the US. Compared to other similarly resourced countries, births cost more in the US and have worse outcomes, especially for Black and Native American women. Many factors influence childbirth outcomes including access to care, structural racism, economics and more. Birth settings and methods also vary widely across geographies. Care for mothers and newborns is complex and includes many cross-sector factors and equity is of major concern. 
Paid Family Leave Benefits Toolkit: Update! 
The Employment Development Dept.(EDD) is providing a new Paid Family Leave (PFL) digital toolkit for sharing information and updates regarding Senate Bill (SB) 83. The digital toolkit is also now available in Spanish. SB 83 extends the maximum PFL claim duration from 6 to 8 weeks in a 12-month period and applies to PFL claims with a start dateon or after July 1, 2020. Potential PFL claimants may choose to delay starting their claim effective date until July 1, 2020, or thereafter, to receive the extended leave benefit. Several forms and publications were revised to reflect the SB 83 changes and this information needs to be shared with the community. Examples include Paid Family Leave Bonding Benefits, The Physician's Practitioner's Guide to Paid Family Leave and more. Additionally, to improve PFL claim filing accessibility for Spanish speaking California workers, a fillable PFL Spanish claim form, the Solicitud de Beneficios del Programa de Permiso Familiar Pagado (PFL) (DE 2501F/S), is now available on the EDD website.This form replaces the Spanish instructions for the English PFL form. Visit Paid Family Leave Forms and Publications to download and print the form. 
USDA Science Blueprint Report 
Outlining major focuses in sustainable agriculture, the environment and agriculture, nutrition and food, and ag policy leadership, the roadmap outlines objectives, evidence and strategies for 2020 through 2025. 
CA Connected COVID-19 Resources 
Check out this toolkit of resources-including flyers, infographics, social media posts, and videos-to help educate community members about contact tracing and California's plan to slow the spread of COVID-19. Some of the resources are available in multiple languages. You can download them for your own use directly from this Dropbox folder. These materials explain that contact tracing, testing, and treatment for COVID-19 is free and not dependent on immigration status. 
CA Census Report Rate Tool: Beat 2010! 
If you haven't checked the Census completion rate map recently, you should and here is why. Statewide we are at 62.9% completion while the 2010 census final completion was 68.2%. CA is currently 23rd in the nation for state for responses! We need to be #1! We are over halfway through the census completion time frame with some extra time due to the pandemic. We can use this extra time to get excellent census completion, especially for children and their families. Be sure to click this video that explains how you can easily find the completion rate for census tracks and target your outreach. It is really important to get good counts to ensure adequate funding, especially to be able to serve neighborhoods that are hard to count and more often in need of programs. Check out your numbers! Need help? The CA census folks are here to help! 
California WIC Association
3960 Industrial Blvd., Suite 500 West Sacramento, CA 95691

Phone: 916-572-0700; Fax: 916-572-0760