FEBRUARY 22 2022
WIC Benefit Bump Must Be Extended Beyond March 31
In early February, Congress announced a short-term funding extension, pushing the Continuing Resolution deadline to March 11, 2022. The WIC benefit bump to fruit and vegetables remains in place until March 31, after which is will revert from $24-47/month back to $9-11/month unless Congress acts to extend funding. We are hopeful that Congress will include funding for the CVB increase in a full-year omnibus agreement, but we encourage our members and partners to call on their members of Congress to urge their support!
NWA's 2nd Annual State of WIC Report
On 2/10, the National WIC Association released a new report, The State of WIC: Investing in the Next Generation. This second annual edition of the State of WIC report, supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, outlines the landscape of the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) during the past year, including the impact of the WIC benefit bump, remote WIC services, and the shift toward online shopping options.
Absent the Child Tax Credit, Child Poverty Up ~5%
Since the Child Tax Credit expired at the end of 2021, nearly 3.7 million more children are in poverty, according to a new study from Columbia University. In the span of just one month, from December 2021 and January 2022, the monthly child poverty rate increased from 12.1% to 17%, the highest rate seen since the end of 2020. Black and Latino children experienced even higher increases in poverty, with 5.9% and 7.1% increases, respectively.
Millions of Children May Lose Medicaid Coverage, Tied to Public Health Emergency Declaration
The number of kids covered by Medicaid or CHIP has soared to a record 40 million during the pandemic, aided by a congressional provision that bars states from disenrolling them during the public health emergency. However, at least 6.7 million children are at risk of losing that coverage and going uninsured for a period once the emergency expires, according to a new analysis released Thursday by the Georgetown Center for Children and Families.
CWA’s 30th Conference and Trade Show - REGISTRATION OPEN!

The draft agenda is now available for The Power of Community, 30th Annual CWA Conference, May 9-12 We are happy to provide a virtual event with opportunity to engage with more national experts and also be accessible to more WIC staff and partners. We are mixing it up a bit by offering concurrent sessions for portions of the conference, which will give attendees the chance to gain 30+ CEUs. Registration is open, at the same rates as 2021, and we continue to offer a discounted rate for students, breastfeeding peer counselors, and retirees! Contact Grace at gharrelson@calwic.org for registration questions. 
Wellness and Black History Month

February is Black History Month, where we celebrate the achievements of Black Americans and honor the significant role and impact they have made on all facets of life and society throughout U.S. history. The theme for 2022 is Black Health and Wellness acknowledging the legacy of not only Black scholars and medical practitioners in Western medicine, but also other ways of knowing (e.g., birthworkers, doulas, midwives, naturopaths, herbalists, etc.) throughout the African Diaspora. Take some time to explore materials on Black Health & Wellness and learn more about conditions that affect African Americans and what to do about it. 
We Want Your Story!

Twice a year, CWA publishes the WIC Watch - a magazine for WIC staff, partner organizations, and any folks interested in all things WIC! We welcome your story submissions for our spring issue, the deadline is March 11th.
Local agency sharing at The Power of Community conference

Showcase and share the great work you have been doing at a virtual local agency conference sharing booth. You can share brochures/handouts(doc, ppt, or pdf), videos, images, website links, a description of your project. Don’t worry! We will upload all of your info…you just need to submit the materials to us via this form by April 27th. More details? Lena can help, lworkman@calwic.org
Limited Implementation of CA’s Healthy Default Beverage Law for Children’s Meals Sold Online
A UC Nutrition Institute study in suggests fewer than 6% of fast food restaurants in low-income California neighborhoods offer beverages online in a way that is consistent with CA’s Healthy-by-Default beverage law for children’s meals. 

COVID-19 Vaccination During Pregnancy Lowers Hospitalization Risk for Infants
Infants of mothers who were vaccinated with an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine during pregnancy were less likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19, according to data published in the CDC's Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report.

Child Care Employment 12.4% Below Pre-Pandemic Levels
Despite January’s strong jobs growth, child care employment remains 12.4% below pre-pandemic levels. Unlike other industries, the child care sector was experiencing difficulties with hiring and retaining workers long before the pandemic, making the strain this crisis put on the child care sector much more difficult to recover from. 

Infant Formula Shortages, Recall
A nationwide shortage of infant formula is due to an increase in demand and supply chain issues during the pandemic, and has been a cause of concern for families all over the United States, including WIC participants in several states. Compounding the problem is a recall of several Similac, Alimentum and Elecare products, after 4 infants became ill after consuming infant formula products from one Abbot facility.

Citrus Season
A bright spot in the middle of winter - citrus season! In California we're especially lucky in many areas to have local access to fresh, in-season oranges, lemons, kumquats, and more! Get your vitamin C and enjoy a sunny-tasting treat this month.
Disaster Preparedness
As climate change becomes an ever-increasing problem we find ourselves facing natural disasters - such as wildfires - on a yearly basis here in California. While many federal, state, and local agencies invest in resources for disaster readiness, the special needs of vulnerable populations during disasters are often disregarded. WIC Can Help by becoming familiar with local, state, and federal resources that would be appropriate to refer families to in the event of a crisis.
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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