MAY 17 2022
Administration, Congress Take Actions to Help Solve Infant Formula Crisis
Last week, the White House announced it would take action to ease infant formula shortages. President Biden urged USDA to ensure that State WIC Agencies offer flexibility of products to WIC shoppers, directed FDA to explore important infant formula, and asked FTC to investigate price gouging on infant formula. Read NWA’s statement hereToday, Speaker Pelosi announced two pieces of legislation to address the ongoing shortage of infant formula: the Access to Baby Formula Act, legislation that would codify USDA waiver authority during emergencies and supply disruptions, build contingencies into WIC infant formula contracts, and promote coordination between USDA and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) during product recalls, and a proposal for emergency supplemental funding that would provide an additional $28 million to FDA to strengthen staff capacity for monitoring and inspections.
White House Announces New Broadband Initiative 
The White House has announced the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) to expand broadband access, increase internet speed and cut costs. Participants in public programs, including WIC, can visit to sign up with a service provider in their area. Federal agencies are also conducting outreach to program participants, and other income-eligible individuals, to encourage participation in ACP. Broadband connectivity is critical for WIC families to be able to access evolving remote WIC services, including video appointments and eventually online shopping platforms. 
Gov. Newsom Releases May Revise
Governor Newsom released his $300.7 billion May Revise to his proposed State Budget, projecting an unprecedented budget surplus of $97.5 billion. The proposal contains important investments in childcare costs for low-income families, includes funding for “Health4All,” offering Medi-Cal to all income-eligible Californians regardless of immigration status, $125 million to expand access to reproductive care including doula coverage for Medi-Cal beneficiaries, removes exclusions to food assistance for undocumented Californians 55 years of age and older, and $2.7 billion for emergency rental assistance. The budget fails to make paid leave accessible to families by increasing wage replacement rates for Paid Family Leave (PFL) and State Disability Insurance (SDI) programs. 
New HHS Maternal Mental Health Hotline
HHS has announced the launch of the Maternal Mental Health Hotline, a national, confidential, toll-free service for new and expecting mothers who are experiencing mental health challenges. The hotline launched on May 8 — Mother’s Day — with counselors available to provide mental health support.
CWA’s 30th Conference and Trade Show - That's a Wrap!

CWA’s 30th Annual Power of Community Conference was a huge success. We had incredible speakers that kicked off the conference, and four days of sessions covering a diverse array of topics that were eligible for over 30 CEUs. We had around 1,500 attendees from across the state and beyond, over 30 vendors in our virtual trade show, worksite wellness sessions and topics, lunch & learn sessions in both Spanish and English, live cooking demos, daily contests, and more. Our live feed and photo booth were alive with creative posts, and we made the very best of the virtual conference space. We had a lot of fun with everyone, we learned a lot, we networked, and we are looking forward to the 31st conference next year! If you attended the conference, please remember that you can access the platform through July 15, to watch any session that you missed.
If you are interested in presenting at next year’s conference, would like to be on our planning committee, or would like to be a sponsor, please email Jodi
New WIC Watch Issue!
Our latest issue of the WIC Watch - CWA's bi-annual magazine about all things WIC - was published last week! Inside you will find policy updates, local agency news, research and policy briefs, WIC workforce developments and wellness innovations. Do you have a story that you want to share in the next WIC Watch? Send it to Sarah! We would also like to issue a correction for this issue of the WIC Watch: On page 19, it says that the Read to Me, Stockton program has mailed 7,000 books out. The program has actually mailed more than 500,000 books to over 7,000 Stockton children!
Data Shows Benefits of Providing Diapers to Families 
First 5 Alameda County invested in an evaluation of a diaper program in the Bay Area to help build upon the body of evidence in support of families' essential needs. The evaluation was recently released in two parts, a final Alameda County report and a joint report for Alameda and San Francisco counties. The data clearly demonstrates that diapers as a form of economic support reduce the stress that families are under to make ends meet, help improve parent-child relationships, and promote overall health and well-being.

Food Deserts Reduce Breastfeeding Initiation
Living in a food desert is associated with decreased breastfeeding initiation, compared with not living in a food desert, and Black people have the highest risk, according to researchers reported at the ACOG Annual Clinical and Scientific Meeting.

FDA Approves COVID-19 Booster for 5-11 Year Olds for Emergency Use
Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration amended the emergency use authorization (EUA) for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, authorizing the use of a single booster dose for administration to individuals 5 through 11 years of age at least five months after completion of a primary series with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. 

A study presented at the European Congress on Obesity suggested that rewarding children with non-food items for trying new vegetables may increase their willingness to eat different types of veggies. Researchers say regularly offering vegetables could increase the ability of toddlers to recognize different types.

Study Explores Effect of Breastfeeding on Mothers' Mental Health
A new systematic review looked at the effects of breastfeeding on mothers' mental health to make recommendations for breastfeeding. Researchers found that overall, breastfeeding was associated with improved maternal mental health outcomes. However, if a mother experiences difficulties in breastfeeding or differences between her expectations and her actual experience, breastfeeding was associated with negative mental health outcomes.

Another Round of Free Covid Rapid Antigen Tests
The federal government on Monday started taking orders for a third round of COVID-19 test kits to be mailed to any American household. HHS said on Monday said that all U.S. households were eligible to order a third round of tests. Each order now contains eight rapid antigen tests, USPS website says. Previously, four tests were sent out at a time.
The U.S. Breastfeeding Committee, A Better Balance, American Civil Liberties Union, MomsRising, National WIC Association, and WorkLife Law have released an updated version of the PUMP Act Partner Toolkit.

Oral Health
Tooth decay is a common but often preventable problem. Untreated tooth decay is progressive and can undermine children’s long-term health, educational achievements, self image, and overall success. In addition, oral health during pregnancy can have long-term effects on children. Good news: WIC Can Help promote oral health for families by referring them to low-cost or free services.
Support CWA online!
As a nonprofit membership organization, CWA relies on the contributions of many organizations and individuals to help us achieve our mission. There are many ways to give of your time, talents, or resources to help CWA promote healthy families, strong communities, and bright futures! We appreciate all forms of support and invite you to join us!
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